WANT TO use social media to get traffic to your business?
Before you go, first step on the brake!
Take a page from Lady Gaga’s manager, Troy Carter: “51 million likes on Facebook does not mean
that you will have 51 million in ticket sales,” said Carter in a recent
interview with the Financial Times.
And he is right!
Remember your purpose is to get sales. People like lots of
things, but that does not mean that they will put their hands in their pockets
for those products or services. “Nice to have” is an opinion, not an action.
And there is a huge chasm between opinion and action. We had
a stunning demonstration of this in September 2012 with the launch of iPhone5.
Some of the blogs and twitter feeds – and that by high profile individuals –
were scathing: “Nothing new,” about summed it up.
Yet Apple has sold all the pre-orders inside of an hour and
within the first 24 hours 2 million of the new phones, 100% more than the
iPhone 4S record! The opinions on social media counted for close to nothing.
Opinions in the digital universe are cheap. Take the
comments on The Economist’s website. Yes, go and have a look.
Unsophisticated fulminations, people just letting off steam.
Compare these with the letters that people write to the magazine under their
own name. If The Economist had to adjust their offering to the perceptions of
those commenting on the blogs, they would have to turn into a tabloid.
So, how to use the information on social media?
distinguish between opinions and behavior. Try to gauge from the Facebook
entries what people actually do. Show how your products and services are in
line with what they actually do – not with their opinions.
forget about quantity, look for a specific kind of individual. The kind of
individual whose behavior shows intense loyalty to you or your product. Minorities are more important than
majorities! Counter-intuitive, but true.
In building a business, intensely loyal followers, “aficionado’s”,
are of more value than numbers. These are the people that you should focus on.
They are the ones whose opinions matter, because their behavior tells you that
their opinions should matter. It’s their
behavior that ignites action in others.
Social media becomes very valuable when they help you to
find these individuals. And it is with them in mind that you should craft your
digital strategy: They are your business ambassadors. Minorities propagate your
business, not majorities.
To return to Lady Gaga, it was precisely because they used
social media intelligently
and applied these lessons that she came to South Africa in the first place. Their analysis showed that there were enough loyal,
fanatical supporters in South Africa to make a tour a financial success.
More on a sound and effective digital strategy next time.
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