Marketers struggling with their social media strategy may be having trouble because they haven’t yet grasped how to move from being a faceless corporation to a “friend.” Unlike the approaches of the past, these new “rules of engagement” for social media mean marketers need to adjust the way they approach consumers. Because they have not fully explored how to go about changing their approach, some companies are paralyzed between doing nothing at all and doing only the bare minimum and thinking they’re done. Here are the 10 rules of social media courtesy of Millward Brown.
1. Don’t recreate your home page in social media: don’t rehash the same information people can get elsewhere.
2. Listen first, then talk: create a dialogue 3. Build trust by being open and honest: transparency is key.
4. Give your brand a face: give consumers someone or something accountable for the brand.
5. Offer something of value: give without wanting something in return.
6. Be relevant: don’t be invasive without purpose.
7. Talk like a friend, not a corporate entity: speak in simple, casual language.
8. Give consumers some control: be comfortable with the fact that you can’t dictate the message any more.
9. Let consumers find you/come to you: brands that seek consumers too fervently will be seen as intrusive and interruptive.
10. Let consumers talk for you: people will advocate for brands they care about.
Now here are my 10 rules before you embark on a social media marketing program:
1. Ensure you have a strategy in place and that it ties back to brand objectives.
2. Ensure you have buy-in from senior managers on what constitutes success.
3. Use metrics that matter like cost per lead or cost per transaction not engagement or number of followers.
4. Train your people on how to use a human voice in social media not corporate spin.
5. Answer questions, comments and complaints in Internet time not on your time schedule. If you wait too long you risk getting consumers upset and having them hijack your brand.
6. Expect to fail but learn as you move forward.
7. Don’t try to be all things to everyone. There are some people that you’re not going to be able to make happy no matter what you do.
8. Make sure that content is relevant to your audience and is not a sales brochure.
9. Do not have an agency speak for you on your social media page.
10. Marketing should be in charge of your social media if you’re targeting consumers & customers. PR if you’re targeting investors and members of the press.