The majority of businesses have yet to awaken to the power of social technology. Many do not think it is relevant to their business. At the same time most continue to use old marketing and advertising techniques for their business. Relevancy is created when you can get people to think in terms they understand. Many do not understand social media.
What Is Relevant To You?
Relevance is a term used to describe how pertinent, connected, or applicable something is to a given matter. A thing is relevant if it serves as a means to a given purpose. Something (A) is relevant to a task (T) if it increases the likelihood of accomplishing the goal (G), which is implied by T.
Given the above definition one must ask if use of social media is pertinent, connected, or applicable to accomplishing business goals and objectives? Before answering that questions one must ask what are your business goals and objectives? Most businesses would answer:
- Increase revenue
- Reduce expenses
- Reach the market with our value proposition
- Expand the market of buyers
- Demonstrate our market differential over competitors
So the answers to accomplishing 1-5 above is another question, How? “How” reflects methods, knowledge, communications and people. Meeting or exceeding 1-5 above for any business requires new methods and knowledge which can be effectively communicated to employees, suppliers, customers and the markets which have an affinity to your business. Thus anything that enables a business to learn new methods and new knowledge that enhances communications with people and the market ought to be considered relevant.
How Important Is It?
In an article titled Ford’s social-media campaign gives next Ford Fiesta a huge head start Farley, a former Toyota executive, said he learned a lot about the effectiveness of social media and grass-roots marketing through his involvement with the launch of Toyota’s Scion brand several years ago.
The marketing world has changed dramatically both for Ford and for all major corporations in the past year, Farley said.
“Online has become mass media,” Farley said. “A Yahoo or Google page takeover actually gets more eyeballs than a network TV commercial now. That hasn’t happened before.”
Now, Farley said the importance of communicating through online social media platforms as well as through public relations, has become far more important due to the evolution of technology.
But We Are Not Ford
Most business would read this story and discount it because they don’t have the resources that Ford does or they may say “we don’t sell cars”. Read on.
I have a small business client who has a unique card marketing technology. They have zero budgets for advertising and marketing and have relied on physical “word of mouth” to sell. I did a series of post titled “Social Media Card” in which I described their technology. The post “pulled in” several interested parties. One was a marketing agency in California for several national associations. The associations offer affinity rewards and discount to their membership which happens to be millions of people.
To make a long story short, my post pulled the marketing agency in to inquiry about the technology. I turned the inquiry over to my client. My client formed a partnership with the agency. The agency sold the association on the card platform because it was innovative and enabled the association to allow its members to “download affinity discounts, rewards and coupons” directly to their members credit card. The platform also allowed direct communications of relevant offerings to members. No paper and no traditional advertising needed.
The association will be able to cut their traditional advertising cost in half. The association members will get merchant brand offerings at discounts simply by the click of a mouse from the associations web site. The marketing agency will make money. My client will make money. How much? Millions upon millions of dollars will flow and every party in the transaction will win. Social media will be built into the campaigns for the brand merchants, the association and for its members use so they can share the value they receive with “friends”.
A series of only three post created the opportunity, brought relations together, created knowledge of an innovative offering, created value for an associations members, value for the agency and for my client. How is that for an ROI?
My client was a small business which just got much larger because we used social media. How relevant is that?