One of the best things about social media platforms and networking, is that people (or customers) are becoming more real, more involved and as such are willing to reveal more about themselves.
The dominance of various social media platforms in our daily lives, apparently show that more and more people (and as such potential customers) are willing to participate there and as such to express their thoughts, ideas, feelings and / or beliefs. Needless to mention that these, are the people that most of us, including our brands, would like to connect with.
The continuous growth of social media platforms and networks facilitates better connections and as such leads the creation and development of online communities. Such communities, foster encouragement for participation, creativity and desire for building and maintaining real, genuine relationships.
Which are the implications for business?
There’s a clear shift away from advertising and selling and a move towards creating more genuine and real connections with your customers, current and potential ones. The emphasis and the continuous shift of marketing budgets towards content marketing and content creation, is largely due to that.
Content marketing provides you the only way to be out there and the only way to create real human connections, strong brand associations and branding networks. Social media and content marketing gives you exactly this single opportunity to present who you are as a company, as opposed to what you do. Don’t forget that people, customers, prospects are already out there in the social media world so its up to you and your brand to participate thereby creating meaningful relationships and encouraging prospect’s engagement.
Brands need to be more human
In the social media environment, brands need to be more human, more real and more inspiring. Your message has to be inspiring, direct but also kind of adventurous. As many social media sites and agencies claim, your effort should be addressed to “inspire” people’s interest, to “ignite” their action and eventually “engage” them. Those, could be your most promising potential customers out there and as such your best brand advocates, you would ever have.
To do that you need to listen to the people and prospects out there. One of the most interesting issues in branding management and marketing, is to understand that it is not really what your brand stands about as it is about to understand what your customers are expecting from your brand and how your product / brand is perceived by them. As such, you need to learn what your customers really want, listen to what they’re after and then be responsive to their needs.
Be more about people
What’s the thing that most people always say when they leave a company in pursuit of their next career level?
The best thing about working here was the people.
Social media platforms and networking, give you exactly this opportunity to make your business around and about the people. Needless to mention that still your product has to be great, but it is exactly this opportunity that can be explored to be spread further and as such to create a more collaborative relationship between you, your business, your brand and your clients (current / potential).
It is exactly this hidden tendency or inner belief of people that always pushes themselves to want to be part of a community, to feel like they belong in and in which they can share, express and / or exchange ideas, beliefs and solutions. Social media gives you exactly this opportunity and chance to bring people closer and show them that they belong with you.
As one of my friends out there, Bryan Kramer, has pointed out,
It’s no longer about consumers, as it’s no more about clients. It’s about people. Listening, engaging, creating real human connections which eventually lead to strong branding associations and networks.
Your customers (current and potential), your advocates are already out there, talking to each other, establishing likeminded and commonly shared communities. All you have to do is to go there and meet them.