CPA, CPC vs. Social Media Engagement – It’s like going to another country.

23 07 2008

Have you ever been to France? They speak French over there, they argue a lot and are extremely social around food – I know this because I actually lived there 25 years :). Well, engaging in Social Media is like visiting France’s back country where CPC (cost per click) and CPA (cost per action) are like visiting Paris. Which one is the authentic ‘France’?…We’re talking quality vs quantity when it comes down to social interaction. Am I being too abstract here? It’s like in hi-density marketing — you’re just trying to hit as many potential clients as you can (a bit like the ‘Metro’ / Underground in Paris) — you end up with a low return and you damage your reputation with everybody through spamming. Your message is not intended for them anyway. BUT WAIT! If their friend or acquaintance had sent the message to them, the return would be much greater! It’s common sense really. So are you ready for quality or are you satisfied with a 1% return on your banner ad campaign or your direct mail? That’s 99% wasted time and energy!

A couple of years ago, everyone was buzzing about social networks even though they were skeptical about how to use them. Now everyone is still buzzing about them but it’s a bit like a burning stove.

Here are 5 handy hints for engaging with social media:

– Set Your Objective: Design your TAG cloud before you start [or just redesign, it]. The TAG cloud is your objective – you can’t blog about everything and be relevant to everyone. Do your research, analyze the competition and most importantly, see how much the tag cloud (keywords) is being talked about in the blogosphere – Do you want to look like this?

– Generate Ideas: Medium size businesses rarely have the time or money to spend on lengthy articles that may (like never) be published in a magazine…nor do they have at least need an $8000 to $15,000 per month PR budget. Not to mention the fact that traditional media gives you a difficult to measure return. BUT HEY! YOU have customers – get them to engage with stories around your product, podcast using Pamela and Skype, get a passionate employee to create video interviews…This is social media, not ABCnews – Then put them on Youtube and start linking it your blogs 🙂

– Be Personable and Personal: What matters to you and them may often be more about you – people care about you online if you let them get closer andengage them on social media platforms from Facebook to Twitter and and so on.

– Do It the Real Way: Social media engagement is about real people – not cold banners and cold push marketing. It takes time, yes; Social Media is not a quick fix. It takes time like any good relationship, but then the rewards are long lasting and repeat business is the name of the game. It’s like going to France again – be real, try to engage – step out of Paris where everyone lives like a rabbit 🙂 Okay, Paris is beautiful, but you get my point.

– The Mirror Again – Bring your 500 customers onto current social networks – many are probably there already – Have you thought of creating your own network? Ning.com maybe what you need then!

– Blog, Blog, Blog: RSS Marketing is efficient only if it is regular, and you connect your media tools (Flickr.com, Youtube.com, Slideshare.com …), your networks (Linkedin, Facebook…), Microblog (twitter, pownce)…etc well.

Here’s to an engaging life together!
Yann

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Facebook page VS Social Media :)

15 07 2008

The tree, the forest… you follow me. When asked about their social media programs, I often get this response from organizations “Facebook…..yeah….. um, we just hired this student to build a Facebook page for us, yeah….it’s really going to make a BIG difference…” Right. Pull the other one.

So I say: “Are you tracking it? Do you already collect stats?”

They say: “stats? what stats? why do I need stats? I have Facebook now”.

I change tack. I say: “So are you blogging as well? Do you actually blog everyday and feed your facebook page with your blog?”

They say: “Blogs? What have they got to do with Facebook?”. Answer: CONNECTIONS BABY….

I say: ” And so are you using YouTube, Slideshare and Flickr as your RSS backend media platforms?”

Now they look confused. Maybe it is the jargon. Maybe they are becoming worried about good old FB. I try something else….

I say: “Have you looked at creating an alumni on Linkedin?, “A group on Facebook?”… “It has a purpose, people will care and engage.”

They say: “Huh?”

Yep, you get the picture…. does one Facebook page mean you are up to speed with social media?
I could keep going but I realize it may be pointless. There’s social media and then there’s the surface of social media….Social media has been likened to an iceberg….it’s deep and much of what it can do is completely hidden from you. A good social media program takes time to implement and reap rewards from but it is worth taking a deep breath and considering….Can we get past the basics? Think about why you are using particular tools. What are your goals? Are they measurable? They should be. Do you have a customer list? A member list maybe? Have you thought of actually engaging your current customers? You should have. Because that’s where it all starts.

Social Media Marketing is still marketing. The old adage is true “the cost of acquiring new customers is still higher.” People won’t care more for you because you’re on Facebook but people who are already your customers can become FANS on facebook… or a fan on YouTube… This is what drives traffic. Communicate relevant information to people who care. Put your precious dime to work for those most important to you and the others will come. Social Media Marketing is a Mirror. It is certainly more than a tree….and much more like a forest.

Yann