Social Media is a relationship building process with a big payoff but it is time consuming and requires a big commitment. A half effort can do more harm than good.
Preparation – Time and Resources
To assess our needs, we need to listen to your customers and take inventory of our resources. Social media is social and requires a conversation. By listening, we discover our customers’ needs, wants, and dislikes. “Step one in our corporate social media program is to listen. Listen before you talk. Walk before you run.”
Through effective listening, we will know our audience and which sites they visit most. We must target these locations first. To be social we must have someone with to converse. The top social media sites are Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
Foursquare is a social platform that can assist sales in brick and mortar stores. Foursquare rewards customer check-ins at different locations. After we know our conversation, we can set goals with specific benchmarks.
Resources needed include time, technical and design skills, and computing power.
- Human resources are needed to set-up accounts, make posts, create ads, monitor conversations, and analyze data. Social media can be very demanding and time consuming. A cost effective option would include the use of interns. Interns will need a clear set of goals and proper training on company policies and procedures.
- Design resources will include time for creation of profile pictures, banners, headers, charts, and ads. This work can be done through in-house employees or contacted out to a web designer, ad agency, or social media expert. We have a design team that can handle these needs.
- Computing resources need to be evaluated to insure servers can handle the traffic social media can add to our website. Additional computers may need to be purchased for intern use.
“It’s often said that SMM takes a lot more time than money. This isn’t true when you begin to factor in the amount of resources it takes to implement a full-blown strategy. You can’t overlook the fact that either you or your staff will have a variety of tasks to complete even before you start tweeting, blogging, and so on.”
Preparation begins with listening to the likes and wants our customers. We must target the places our customers visit most. Our company has the technical and design skills needed but additional human resources may be required.
To be continued – this is part 1 of 3.