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All Things Social

Mike Pascucci

Social Media Strategy - Research

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Why? Why get involved in Social Media? As my prior entry states, you really need to outline the reasoning as to why your company is going to be involved in Social Media in order to start down the right path. If your reasoning does not align with your corporate goals, then you are already starting down the wrong path. After you align your corporate goals with your Social Media goals, you should then also conduct an internal audit. This will ensure that you continue to leverage what communication vehicles are working, and highlight your Social Media channels within that communication.

 

So you seem to have your goals aligned and understand the current communications that you can leverage, but what are others doing? How is Social Media assisting and supporting the goals of your competition? This is where an in-depth competitive analysis comes into place. Where have others failed/succeeded?

 

In many cases, your competition will have an online presence in some way/shape/form. Whether it is a Twitter or Facebook account, or whether they are leveraging Blogs in order to drive their "Social Proof", they likely have a presence. If they do not, it is great to be the first on the block since you'll be able to harness the current "lack of engagement" to attract potential membership. It is always very beneficial to be the first - just ask eBay or PayPal.

 

The competitive analysis should review what tools they are leveraging within their website (blogs, forums, wiki's, user profiles....) and how they are leveraging external sites (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube....). Are there other external platforms where your audience may be that has not been leveraged? Obviously the idea is to cast the widest and largest net possible to engage with your audience that is already located within those areas in order to drive them to your website. It is within your website that you have more control over the information and how it is presented.

 

In parallel with this analysis, you should begin initial discussions around how you can conduct focus groups or surveys of your audience. If you currently have a community, ask them how they like it, and ask them what is missing. If you do not have a community, but have an email list, email those that have opted in to Marketing messaging, and invite them to participate in a survey, so that you can get a better idea of what their thoughts are. You may think that your community needs "x", but they may say that they are really looking for "y".

 

The above steps really display that you can not focus on tools or strategy independently. Tools and strategy need to be discussed hand-and-hand, as they really do support each other.

Mike Pascucci provides insight on all things associated with social media and online community management. Based on his experiences, he'll share past, current and potential future best practices concerning implementations and strategies.

Mike Pascucci

Mike Pascucci's current position at Ektron - a flexible, scalable, WCM solution provider - provides him the opportunity to discuss and develop Social strategies for corporations that either have failed in the past, or are afraid of failing in their new initiatives. Whether it includes an Enterprise Social Strategy or one that is External, leveraging the likes of Twitter and/or Facebook, Mike can help you navigate the waters. He has been part of the "Social Software" revolution for over 10 years, including 5+ years at eBay where he held numerous Community roles - Manager, Product Manager, and International Consultant.

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