Brand Socialization Fuels Brand InfatuationFebruary 20, 2013 By Peter Weedfald
We are extremely busy people. We are happily and socially engaged while focused on our careers, families, friends and what time is left in our day for our cherished hobbies. Our transactional business DNA has evolved, our fabrics of personal engagements have morphed, and we keep a glowing mobile device at our sides 24 hours a day. Hyper-changing, short product and app life cycles have caused positive disruption, global opportunities, competitive danger and of course, vast confusion. What an uncanny price we pay to play, to gain, to profit.
We are also smart. We know there is opportunity in confusion, but first we find opportunity in reconciliation, requiring a crisp and smart affinity to understand the fast paced social networking world we now troll through. As we know, "the very best opportunities in business lie in danger... welcome to the potential danger of missing the opportunity of social networking."
Opportunity itself is why we conduct phatic brand discourse indispensable to maintaining constant and frequent social connections amongst our most important consumers. Indispensable precisely because it keeps the possibility of bi-modal communication in fluid order, for the purpose of future, more substantial communications; for the purpose of ensuring competitive advantage through the toolbox of smart social engineering.
Let's ensconce our brand-building chores through social engineering best defined as:
- The development of social and professionally motivated contacts, sharing and caring about information and content of common interest.
- Ensuring your brand reaches and engages with your most relevant consumers to gain valuable brand relationships: " to gain more brand cents than your competition."
And B2B, B2C and B2ME social opportunities are advantaged because you gain:
A. More relevant and consumer-centric understanding of your target audiences needs, preferences, interests and loyalties.
B. An immediate understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of your products, price points and juxtaposed competitive brand value allowing for fast course corrections and/or stepping up the opportunity fuel.
C. Faster more efficient customer service and support feedback.
D. Consistency and frequency with your core customers, and with your competitors' customers designed to build interest, preference, life time value; to build profitable competitive advantage.
E. The ability to ask for and receive critical feedback, recommendations and guidance to accelerate your brand and product affinity, equity and profit.
F. A formidable social army of loyal brand fans who will reward you back with their voices, their engagements, their networking, their pocketbooks.
G. A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) data engineering dashboard for your most enthused and self-identified brand fans, watching for your next "relevant to me" communication, product and or engagement.
H. A smart, social networking "war room" in your building. The room should contain up to 10 monitor displays each fixated and tuned to your most important volume-based social initiatives i.e. a Twitter display, a Facebook display, a YouTube display, a display for your own web site, a retail and/or distributor site display (with fast bookmarks), etc.
Having said this, brand competing, that is fighting for a consumers' short and long term attention, interest and conviction, is not a solitary art form even in the world of social networking. There is competition behind you, in front of you, around you and even hidden from you, as your brand marches into the future of your expected more than fair share of opportunities. The following socially-charged marketing realities call for brave internal and external focus to energize, engage and promulgate socially engineered strategies and tool sets to ensure brand growth, brand security:
Reality #1: Brands have discovered the sales and marketing power of social networking and are hiring subject matter experts to navigate, harness and capitalize on this highly competitive, less expensive leverage.
Reality #2: The Internet is naturally evolving its core one-to-one relevant intelligence creating smart and efficient profit pools between creativity and actionable stimulations, defining the new pylon for brands' profitable growth.
Reality #3: Social networking is not just for the young. Those with generally the largest household incomes, those over the age of 55 globally are highly Internet social.
Reality #4: Facebook is a multi-modal pylon to social engagements and a dominant window to global opportunity. Every brand builder should have a keen and highly motivated strategy to harness and benefit from this social powerhouse.
Reality #5: Social networking is rapidly exploding globally, opening new windows to opportunity in every country, cutting through cultural and geographic boundaries.
Reality #6: 126 million blogs are available according to BlogPulse. Blogs offer smart vistas for brand engagements when created and executed in the relevant language of user and consumer-valued expectations.
Reality #7: Social networking is highly efficient and more profitable than conventional mediums when harvested and implemented correctly.
Reality #8: Ambient marketing is mono marketing if not fully engaged in relevant social sites, social opportunities with competitive rhythm impact.
Reality #9: Lasso, harness and teach your entire organization from the CEO down through your hallways regarding the competitive value of the social networking landscape. Social networking cannot be effective nor protracted without internal support.
The gambit of competitive predating and preying through social change, through social networking is already here. Opportunity abounds for smart social-centric marketers. However, our ubiquitous social reality could also be a casualty for uninformed businesses, for the late to the social party, for the socially timid, and socially inactive! When done right, brand socialization hunts for and muscles up brand infatuation, your most potent and profitable competitive weapon of choice.