So, in the grand scheme of things, where does social media sit?
In my experience, and broadly speaking, social media (or social marketing) is useful in the ‘Awareness’* stage of a buying decision (right at the early stages of the purchase). It’s a cost effective way of simply ‘being there’ with your message and proposition. In other words being everywhere your buyer turns (as long as you know where they are turning – no point in being on Fabcebook if your audience doesn’t hang out on Facebook).
In any case, with more than seven in every ten adults having some kind of social profile (source: Ofcom 2015 Market Report), you need to be there and ready for a conversation. You just need to research your buyer personas and where they are.
* One of the six steps to a buyer decision (Philip Kotler model as referenced by Watertight Marketing). Read more on the Watertight Marketing website here >>
But how can social media change someone’s mind?
You don’t have to be Neil Mckenna but timing could be the answer. Here’s an example from my own experience…
I was recently invited to meet with a prospect who had a recruitment gap and needed some help with event management and in-house marketing. Two things I can certainly assist with.
I’d been referred by Watertight Marketing, so I was pretty sure my profile and website had been checked, and they had already warmed to my proposition. I had some ‘Awareness’.
Before my appointment I had an introductory call with the business owner to chat about the business and requirements. I’d given my ‘elevator pitch’. After a short conversation, we confirmed the date of the meeting, and we were all set.
In the time between the call and the meeting, I posted an article on Linkedin entitled ‘Do you know where your business is leaking profit?’ It was a guest article I had written for a recruitment consultant a few weeks prior.
The article talked about some basic principles of getting a watertight marketing operation:
- Touchpoints: Do you know where people interact with your brand, and do you have the right marketing in place to support their buying journey?
- Leaks: Do you know where marketing is missing along that pathway, and therefore are potentially leaking profit (and customers)?
- Prioritising: Do you know how to fix those leaks (with marketing) and in what order?
What I didn’t know is that said business owner saw the article post the morning of our meeting. By the time I arrived, he’d already started thinking differently about his marketing. Maybe it wasn’t an event manager he needed. Maybe it was a deeper delve into the marketing challenges he was facing – how to reach his audience – how to get his message out.
So, did he need the marketing he thought he needed
What ever you think, the Linkedin post got him thinking that he no longer wanted an events manager, or even any events for that matter. He wanted to see if his business was leaking profit and how he could fix it. In my world, that’s called a Thirteen Touchpoint Leak™ Assessment.
Like many other marketing consultants, people come to me with problems. They need more leads or sales or their current marketing simply isn’t working. They may also have an idea of what they need to fix it. Some PR. An Event. Some telesales, but how do they know if that’s the right thing to do, and how do they find a supplier to do it? This is where a good marketing consultant can help – and by exploring all the options.
You might also like from Watertight Marketing: The four foundation leaks (blog) »