Recently, we had not one, not two, but six members of the Convince & Convert team together at Social Media Marketing World in San Diego. It was a great opportunity for us not only to see some of our favorite colleagues, but also to share, connect, and meet with practitioners of digital from across the industry spectrum.
We co-hosted the annual Warm Up event for SMMW speakers, and four of us also spoke at the event in different capacities. Jay Baer—president of Convince & Convert and sharp dresser—dove into customer experience with “How to Use Customer Service to Turn People Into Brand Advocates” in addition to leading an awesome panel on staffing your social media team. Lauren Teague, strategist and sports maven, led a workshop on creating real-time content during live events. Daniel Lemin, head of consulting and king of cool, moderated a panel on getting your customers to leave online reviews. And I spoke on how to use analytics to create more relevant content for your audience.
Not only is the event one of the largest digital marketing conferences around, but it’s one of the few times of year that our virtual team gathers in one place. It’s apropos, then, that when I asked my fellow Convince team members about their takeaways from the event, the focus was on people and the human side of social media.
“What I like most about Social Media Marketing World is the emphasis on social. People. It’s great to connect with someone you know professionally who is on the other side of the screen, but in a live, authentic way. It’s easy to forget that each Twitter follower or LinkedIn Connect is a person, filled with stories, aspirations, and fears—just like you. Often I find the conversation turning to one’s family, funny side stories, or weekend plans which allows me to get to know someone much better—and have a much deeper and more impactful professional conversation down the road.”
One of our opportunities in social media is to truly take advantage of the two-way conversations that can take place. Maybe that means creating a Twitter list of contacts you made at an event so that you can keep up with them. Perhaps it’s using your CRM to tag people by their interests so that you can share things with them that add value to them outside of their work.
As digital proceeds, we’ll see more opportunities for mass personalization. It’s not just about creating more relevancy—it’s about creating connection and emotional resonance.
Because of the ever-growing importance of social as a touchpoint for customers, it’s becoming not only the first line of defense for companies but also the go-to resource for customers throughout their lifecycle. With that in mind, social media teams need to be part customer service, part sales, part marketing, and all value.
“Based on Jeff Sieh’s insights about graphic techniques that perform well on Pinterest and elsewhere, Zontee Hou’s breakdown of how analytics are key to content creation, Koka Sexton’s extensive study of the volume and types of content that bolster growth on LinkedIn profiles, Jay Baer’s example of how customers rave on social media about a relatively unknown theme park in Indiana, and Kate Ahl’s deep dive into Pinterest and her startling discovery that faces don’t perform well there, my key takeaway is: It’s more critical than ever to listen and contextualize social media activity to understand your customers and give them what they want, where they want it.”
The social media marketing landscape is constantly getting more complex. At the same time, the throughline is the same. We as marketers have to look to our customers’ motivations and needs to show them the right information at the right times. The context, the timing, and the message all matter. When we seize upon kairos—the opportune time and place—that’s when we connect with our customers and bring them to the next step in their customer journey.
Were you at Social Media Marketing World? What were some of your takeaways? Share them in the comments.
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