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Using social for business? Avoid these rookie mistakes...

24-April-2013
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Using social for business? Avoid these rookie mistakes...

Ironically, social media is no longer about mere ‘socialising’. The concept of social networking has now moved to a complete different level wherein consumers, brands and marketers – all have a distinct role to play. In an era of such social activeness, a single wrong decision can lead to social death.

There is no hard and fast rule to be successful on social media as everything depends upon the nature of the brand but there are a few mistakes that marketers tend to make very often. While the do’s continue to be hazy, exchange4media takes a look at the don’ts…

#Mistake 1: No content strategy
Creating a brand page or community just for the sake of social media presence without rooted content is one of the most common mistakes made by marketers. Brands need to create content that users can connect to and which adds some meaning to the brand’s page. Merely posting and sharing existing content to make the page active will not do the trick.

“Original content is rarely created and much of the content pushed out is generic and could have been made by any brand. This creates dissonance and boredom among consumers and will lead to a drop in interest and engagement with the community,” said Sabyasachi Mitter, MD, Interface Business Solutions.

Local Banya, an upcoming e-commerce portal for domestic shopping, is a very good example of relevant content strategy on Facebook. The official page of the website has 23,472 active likes and promotes content in sync with the website’s theme – the services one gets from a local roadside banya can now be found online. The page shares daily offers, food-related content and local updates such as festivals that their TG can connect with.

#Mistake 2: Relying on likes and views, rather than creating independent measurement metrics
There was a phase when Facebook itself could not bank on the credibility of likes. While the website is trying to strengthen its like currency; marketers still cannot completely rely on them or other currencies such as interactions, PTAT numbers or follower counts as there is no background about the relevance of it.

“Measuring in terms of likes is not feasible as they may be from fans who are not interested. The quality of a like is important,” said Chetan Asher, Founder and CEO, Tonic Media.

Rather than relying on currencies created by social media websites, brands need to design their own measurement metrics which helps calculate RoI or other such tangible results. “Even if brands take engagement as a strategy, there should be brand track measures that give feedback on the movement of the brand pointers and see if what is being done on social is having an impact on the brand at all,” added Mitter.

#Mistake 3: Expecting overnight success
Expecting that social media is a magic wand that will get reputation and RoI in a flick is one mistake seen very often. Social media is like any other media tool and will take time to resonate with the TG. “Too soon or together it might not succeed. Brands need to make plans that pan out very logically and target a target community,” added Asher.

Tata Docomo was one of the early birds on social media. The brand has been investing in ORM (online reputation management), engagement and crowd sourcing activities, strong content and communication from the very beginning and now has 1,32,19,407 likes. According to Social Bakers, Tata Docomo is the most active Indian brand on Facebook.

#Mistake 4: Treating it as a short-term medium
A number of times, brands have been seen creating pages for a particular product or a campaign and then is not maintained, thus affecting the goodwill of the brand and also wastage of the investment made in the medium.

#Mistake 5: Believing social media is cheap or free
While marketers are warming up to the concept of social, they still look at it as a subordinate medium on which brands can come on board at minimal prices. As opposed to the stereotype, social is not free and significant investments are required to drive social objectives. Brands believe every piece of content will go viral, which unfortunately is not going to be nine out of ten times.

Brands need to integrate social in their media mix from the very beginning and allot a separate budget for it. If planned thoroughly, along with avoiding the above mentioned mistakes, social can weave wonders. After all, as digital experts say…creating a socially successful brand is not rocket science.

Tags ISB Sabyasachi Mitter Tonic Media Chetan Asher Local Banya Vodafone Zoozoos

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