During the early to mid-2000s, when we were first being introduced to social media, the whole concept seemed to be a bit juvenile. I was in my late 20′s during this time, and even to me, it seemed like nothing more than an online social circle for high school and college students to gossip and share their “kissy face” pictures.
Don’t get me wrong, people are still doing that (I forgot about the guys who take shirtless pictures of themselves in the mirror), but social media has become much more than that. We are only scratching the surface of how to properly use this cultural phenomenon.
“How many people in this room go on search.twitter.com everyday (to see if their brand is mentioned)? It’s grossly negligent to not do that.” This is a quote from best-selling author, entrepreneur and social media guru, Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary is famous for leveraging the internet, and social media, in particular, to transform his father’s wine store in New Jersey, into one of the largest online wine retailers in the world, Wine Library (.com).
What Gary is getting at here, is that social media has matured from a juvenile fad to one of the most important AdvantageMarketing tools that any business today can use to make themselves better. It has essentially opened up the flood gates, and has given companies and their customers (or potential customers) a way to interact — in real time. Platforms like blogs, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, just to name a few, have granted us access to things like never.
As a business, you can truly find out more about your customers, target them directly with personal campaigns, or even interact with them by answering questions or taking care of problems, and developing a persona for your brand.
Social media is not going anywhere anytime soon, and this platform is only going to develop further and further. Gone are the days of customer’s taking the time to write a complaint letter and sending it through snail mail. Now, if they want to blast you, they’ll just do it on Yelp. Hop on these sites, check search.twitter.com, like Gary Vaynerchuk suggests, and respond to their concerns. Likewise, when they have something nice to say about your business, say “thank you” to them.
Brands are going to become more personal in the future. Try to be an early adopter for once.