Forty-eight percent of small businesses and 79 percent of large companies have turned to social media to promote their brand and business to the world.
TEDx speaker and author of Seamless “A Hero’s Journey of Digital Disruption, Adaptation and Human Transformation” Anders Sörman-Nilsson said companies without a social media presence were expected to add at least one platform in the coming year.
“When it comes to engaging with consumers on social media many businesses don’t have an effective strategy. Although in the past there was a division between ‘traditional’ and ‘social’ media approaches, brands who still believe there is that separation, aren’t taking this business tool seriously enough.”
“In today’s market, understanding that social media is now considered traditional media is more important than ever for businesses. The customer journey is no longer linear, and digital due diligence has already completed a large chunk by the time they interact with a brand’s sales representative, making well-executed online touch points essential,” he said.
Sörman-Nilsson helps leaders decode trends, decipher what’s next and turn provocative questions into proactive strategies and has a pool of hot shot clients such as Apple, Johnson & Johnson, Cisco, IBM, Xerox and Commonwealth Bank.
To help companies use social media effectively as a business tool, Sörman-Nilsson detailed his expert tips on the best way to do so:
- A picture says 1,000 words. While keywords and great, engaging content are still relevant for the SEO algorithms in Google, the way to success is through HEO (Human Engagement Optimisation). Imagery, both still and moving can capture both mobile minds and analogue hearts to build brand equity.
- The video is king. Mobile video distribution is growing exponentially and for a good reason. If a picture says 1,000 words, the video says 1,000 pictures. Facebook prioritises native video, and Instagram is giving prime real estate to stories because videos, both edited and documentary-style are very captivating content pieces.
- The video star isn’t killing radio. Podcasts are seeing a renaissance and are a good way to tune into audiences who are on the move. A person on a commute, at the gym or in traffic, may not be able to view a video, but they will gladly listen to inspirational or mind-shifting content, interviews, and rants. It is also an unexplored opportunity for B2B, as much as it is for B2C.
- Order, discipline, and a bit of cheekiness. Tools like Hubspot, Hootsuite and Buffer enable companies to schedule tweets, LinkedIn Updates, and blog promotions in a disciplined fashion. Social media messaging should be operated just like traditional media – in an organised way – while still allowing for humanity and responsiveness.
- Don’t divide digital and traditional market budgets. Don’t create internal friction and politics by having digital and traditional silos which are adversaries. The two need to play together – seamlessly. The Chief Marketing Officer or marketing director should oversee all aspects and ensure the digital and analogue channels complement each other.
- Seamlessness. Customers are expecting brands to connect with their digital minds and offer experiences to their analogue hearts. Social media is only one aspect of the deeply empathetic design of customer journeys, which should be moving clients and prospects from awareness to engagement, evaluation, the decision-making process, and finally on usage and loyalty, whereby both digital and analogue media augment each other.
- Make it strategic and inspirational. Whether it’s B2B or B2C, as customers, consumers all crave transformational and deeply empathetic content that educates and empowers businesses to make smarter decisions. So, to ensure that this is the case, the company’s inbound content strategy needs to be both strategic and inspirational.
For a more detailed report on how Australian individuals and businesses use social media check out the Sensis Social Media Report released last year by clicking on the link below: