The availability of social medium platforms has made them a collaborative tool to distribute press release and official communication. Although social media are not intended to allow direct communication with everyone, they provide resources and accessibility to the followers, journalists, stakeholders, and influencers who will amplify the delivered messages from brands. Appropriate content can be conveyed to right audience at right time using social media’s efficient delivery mechanism.
It is more efficient to set up multi-media presence than single channel to increase brand awareness. However, as different social media have different audience personas in terms of age, education, income, and behaviors, content as well as tones should be fine-tuned to cater with the majority of the audience on each platform (Ref. 1). For instance, Facebook is more like a leisure channel for friends and families to share fun things and vacation experience, while LinkedIn is focusing on career-centric topics and professional remarks about brands and products. Nevertheless, the adoption of multiply social media should not supersede the rule of brand self-consistency – consistency across social platforms is key for brands to being memorable.
As a popular and an effective tactics, most brands have multi-accounts on a single social medium to deliver a focused topic or sub-brand through specific brand account. For example, Lyft on Twitter has a couple of accounts – @lyft is the main brand account focusing on the newest programs and services; @AskLyft provides official Twitter support to answer questions at 3AM – 9PM PT every day; @lyftdesignteam is a hub for sharing ideas about web design, app development, color algorithm and vehicle tools (Ref. 2). Similarly, L’Oréal owns various LinkedIn pages for its sub-brands such as Redken, Yves Saint Laurent, and Lancôme (Ref. 3). This allows the company to engage specific targets for each of its brands by providing relevant content accordingly. Moreover, both Lyft and L’Oréal pay a lot of attention on current events and deliver messages, new product/service launch, and promotions as connected with on-going social issues, sport events, and cultural activities. In one of Lyft tweets, Lyft announced to provide free rides to people who were affected by the power outrage and headed to local education centers in the Bat Area. L’Oréal’s latest post features with holding an innovation competition for reducing plastic pollution and interview video with Guive Balooch, the leader of its Technology Incubator.
The incorporation of brands with current social news and events has spurred a great attention among social media. The many-to-many interactions and co-creation of new content further improve the brand storytelling and story making process. In most cases, positive impressions are developed, and this drives the growth of brand awareness and customer base. The right content and good interaction along the user journey on social media definitely enhance the engagement of audience with brands.
In spite of relatively lower possibilities, negative comments or even crisis posts do show up on social channels. In order to mitigate the negative effects of these postings in a timely manner, brands should have risk and crisis planning and always perform good communication practice in dealing with these comments. Being honest and prompt is most important for responding as it will minimize the damage of brand reputation and deliver positive responsibility image of the company (Ref. 4).
Different from social monitoring which is based on metrics such as engagement rate and number of mentions, social listening is a more holistic and systematic approach for audience research. Social listening allows companies or organizations to track (data collection), analyze (why you got positive or negative comments? what audience are most interested in? keyword analysis; competitors analysis; get online mood or social media sentiment), and respond to conversations (quick respond to positive and negative posts; identify opportunities to engage customers; generate new leads; uncover pain points or weak points for product development/improvement; find influencers) about your brand and industry online, and use the information to guide future strategies (Ref. 5). There are a variety of social listening tools available for analytics of the obtained bid database, which will lead to insightful understanding of audience and actional adjustments of social media strategy.
As social media marketing is gaining an increasing importance in digital marketing, a good framework is needed to implement social strategy in a most effective way to achieve business objectives.
- 5 Tips for Picking the Right Social Media Platform for Your Business. Sing WeistSing Weist. October 5, 2018. https://www.clearvoice.com/blog/5-tips-for-picking-right-social-media-platform-for-your-business/
- 6 Social Media “Musts” for Crisis Communication. June 08, 2015 / in Comms Best Practices / by Jim Dougherty. https://www.cision.com/us/2015/06/6-social-media-musts-for-crisis-communication/
- What is Social Listening, Why it Matters, and 10 Tools to Make it Easier. November 27, 2018. by Christina Newberry. https://blog.hootsuite.com/social-listening-business/