When brands talk about social, it’s mostly from a communications and marketing perspective. Which posts translate into the most likes? How much content should you create to meet your engagement metrics? Are you visible on all the right channels?
But social offers way more possibilities than ticking off some KPIs in your marketing budget (although those matters too!). Social media has grown to become a massive ecosystem where all of your existing and prospective customers hang out and talk about their interests and concerns, giving you a ton of opportunities to make sure your brand is delivering exactly what the market needs.
Here’s how to do more with social.
Make Social A Brand Experience
Too often, social is an add-on or an afterthought. It aligns with a brand’s voice, identity and mission, and acts as an ongoing short-form marketing campaign. But social offers way more than that. It’s often the first place your customers will find you, and it’s the place where they’re most likely to interact with you—leverage social’s power by making it an experience, not just a broadcast. Invite your customers behind the scenes, show them what you’re working on, and introduce them to brand collaborators and employees. Social gives you the opportunity to make your brand transparent, human, and accessible – and allows customers to be a part of the whole experience.
Make Social Your R&D Playground
Social is a great place to chat with customers, answer questions and address concerns. But leveraged properly, it can offer much more than simple in-the-moment customer service responses. Make it a place where you test interest in new products or services, crowdsource ideas or get people to vote on brand- or product-specific attributes such as colors, language, or even which non-profits or causes to support. Your customers will love the empowerment of being involved, and you’ll get direct feedback from your ideal customers, not just people picked from a focus group.
Leverage Social to Look Inwards
We mentioned earlier that today’s social world goes far beyond a mere marketing presence. In fact, used right, it can inform just about every area of your business, from customer service to R&D to business intelligence. There are a plethora of social media monitoring tools available that allow you to “listen” to what the internet is saying about your brand, products, competitors, or industry. The key here is that these conversations are the ones that people are having when you’re not in the room – they’re raw, unfiltered, and express people’s actual thoughts, concerns, and desires. Smart companies are using this information to get the jump on other brands, get ahead of potential reputation crises, revamp products to address negative feedback or identify areas of opportunity. When this kind of information is tapped and shared across an entire organization, your brand is positioned to lead, not just react.
Ready to Lead With Social?
If you still think of social as a cheap photo album or that place where memes go to die, it’s time to rethink. Social is one of the biggest (free!) datasets that we have available, and it presents opportunities at every level of your business. StellaPop can help you leverage social to better engage with customers, inform your R&D, and make smart business development decisions. Get in touch, and our team of experts will show you how to gather the tools, knowledge, and strategy needed to lead with social.