26 Jul Changing Up Your Social Media Strategy
A few years ago, we hit a tipping point where just about every company or brand out there had a website. Today, it’s hard to find a brand that doesn’t have some form of online social media presence. However, this doesn’t mean that all brands are executing a social media strategy that is helping, rather than hurting their brand.
The simplicity and low cost nature of creating and posting to a social media platform like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. seems to have given some brands a false sense of security and confidence. Over time this lax approach has resulted in many companies forgetting that social media shouldn’t be used for self-promotion, but rather as a way to engage people, build brand trust, and address customer issues. As we said earlier this year with our 2016 forecast, social media is going to be a lot more about customer service and interaction than self-promotion.
For an example of a stellar social media presence, have a look at Airbnb. Airbnb, a global community of hosts offering travelers homey and unique accommodations, has grown by leaps and bounds. With over 25 million total guests, Airbnb.com receives bookings quicker than every 2 seconds. Embracing its origins of growth from the word of mouth of passionate travelers, Airbnb has transitioned this discussion to the online world. Through its personal and emotion-driven stories of its real hosts, Airbnb has been able to humanize itself and gain the trust of a naturally skeptical audience.
An equally important facet of social media is addressing customer issues. Incite’s “State of Social Customer Service Report” claims that 71% of consumers who experience a quick and effective brand response on social media are more likely to recommend that brand to others. The old adage of it is cheaper to retain an existing client than gain a new one has never been more evident.
The size of a company shouldn’t be used as a scapegoat for the poor management of a brand’s social media presence. Nike, a global goliath in the sporting goods industry, has set up a dedicated Twitter handle (@NikeSupport) to respond to online customer service issues. With a response rate of over 70%, and responding to 55% of tweets within 30 minutes, Nike is doing everything it can to ensure customer grievances don’t spiral out of control and become a social media nightmare.
The goal of your social strategy in 2016 needs to be customer focused. Find out what they need and give it to them. If it is quick answers to questions then respond quickly. If they need a push in the form of a personal experience from an existing customer then give them testimonials. The ball is in your court.