Obvious examples I point out here for the sake of propriety, i.e. consumer vs. non-consumer concerns. In the first case above a real point to be made is that the potential value of general population branding for what they sell is about zero, most people don't even know what a coupler is.
The nightclub is a given though, and then a good in-between example would be a company like Intel, who as we have seen over the years have done a spectacular job of branding themselves. The process of utilizing social media is very specific to the business in question, and need only be conducted in a limited capacity for the great majority.
In furtherance popular venues as we are now seeing are trending to vary, so at any given moment you tailor your campaign to the most appropriate venue. And now this is where the research comes in...
Rather than get into a discussion of mundane why's & wherefores I want to take an opportunity of demonstrating my way of doing things. After all it's why you're here right? I'll pick a good example of a gray-area product social media-wise... How about strollers for elderly persons?
Now these strollers are not just run-of-the-mill, our company, lets call them “Secure Stroll”, makes strollers that have more features and cost more money. Regardless of product, typical shopping behaviors will forever apply, so if we're talking small pictures of strollers in a catalog, the customer focus will naturally zero in on the price first. This in turn creates a market disadvantage for our company.
Now at first thought old-people strollers certainly aren't a hot topic with the general public, but to care-givers you bet they are and for good reason. But it doesn't really seem like you'd be getting onto social networks to talk about this right? WRONG... Its a great idea...
Granted at this particular juncture (2012) we don't have too many elderly people on social media outlets; well, maybe... The bigger issue is that their adult children & caregivers are, and these are the people we would target for social media. So who are these people?
This is a piece of research that is not even necessary to source here. Everywhere you go, and within the family, you primarily see women in the 30ish to sixties age bracket as the overwhelming demographic of primary care resource/decision-makers, be it a daughter or a staff nurse. So this understood, whats a good way to get in front of these people?
The following conclusions are based on hard data analysis; the resources listed are hyperlinked to their source page for you to read if you like...
In picking a venue, professional experience comes into play, and the method of choice here for me is going to be Facebook. Quoting from a time-tested favorite, StatCrunch, a study they conducted discovered that “the interquartile range, or middle 50% of all visits by females, was 8 visits per day”.
So running a PPC, or pay-per-click campaign on Facebook and targeting this age range of females becomes an excellent way to get them to shop our company. We would link the ad to a Facebook Business page which over time will fill with solicited likes & more importantly, very valuable and permanent positive feedback about the product.
Now it has to be said that the true definition of Social Media as portrayed is getting people to talking about you. In reality that occurs very infrequently and the value of it to 90% of business out there is hardly anything at all. The repeated admonition one hears in commercials such as like us on Facebook for example... Does anyone care? Do you??
Social media as a free-standing element is extremely limited in its ability to sell anything on its own accord, but when used in conjunction with an campaign, and preferably tied to it, then the game changes dramatically.
As our example has done here, we have an ad campaign running in a social media environment. We have targeted high-value prospective clients who, whether or not they are clicking on the ad, are still seeing it and as a component of brand strategy it serves our company quite well visually. But how much?
Well, from a paper produced by the Interdisciplinary Journal of Contemporary Research in Business, “Brand Awareness score a coefficient of .269, with an error of .123, leaving a beta of .159.” This statement essentially means the behavioral impact of repeated brand exposure is quantified at a median of 16% influence.
Translated, we have a situation where in addition to outright product sales, we are branding ourselves to future clients through repeated exposure to our ad placements and receiving a 16% boost in probability of sale to interested parties who have viewed the ad as the need will arise.
In addressing your needs I trust you have gotten a simple taste of my approach to the element of Social Media and I encourage you to contact me via E-mail or phone @ 972-488-3700, to learn more about this type of campaign, and my input toward your specific needs...