2. #1 What are some of the
ways that brands are
using social media today?
istening – Perhaps the most common use is monitoring, which allows
businesses to gain real-time insight into what is being said about their
brand. This insight is aggregated, analyzed, and leveraged for a variety of
purposes, including product development, marketing, customer service,
etc. A natural extension of listening, many brands also use social media to
directly respond to service and support inquiries.
Brand Awareness – On the marketing side, social media sites are commonly
used to build brand awareness, through a combination of games, contests,
quizzes, surveys, and community management.
3. Acquisition Qualification – As social marketing matures, many brands are
now looking to leverage these channels for acquisition and qualification,
using forms, Facebook Apps, and other means to collect and enrich
ne-to-One Engagement – Using the rich data available via social media,
marketers are starting to deliver highly relevant, personalized experiences,
including one-to-one messages and content via Facebook Apps, Twitter
direct messages, etc.
4. #2 Why do social media
present such valuable
There are three primary reasons why social media sites are so valuable
to marketers are:
Users – The top social media sites possess enormous user bases. With
more than 900 million monthly active users, Facebook would be the third
largest country in the world. Twitter, meanwhile, has surpassed 500 million
Engagement – What’s more impressive is how highly engaged these users
are. Facebook has 526 million daily active users who log 10.5 billion minutes
5. on the site—each day. Twitter has 140 million active users who send a
billion tweets every three days.
Data – Lastly, social media creates a tremendous amount of data. These
sites offer unprecedented insight into customers’ interests, needs, and
behavior—in real time. Acquired properly, this data can be a significant
relevance multiplier for marketers.
and its march towards
one billion active users
6. #3 Why do consumers
really like/follow brands
on social media sites?
The reasons consumers like/follow brands
may not be what brands or marketers think.
One survey1 illustrates the misconception.
While consumers ranked purchases and
discounts as their top motives for following
brands, these reasons were lowest on the list
of why brands think consumers follow them.
A Nielsen survey2 further validates consumer
preferences, ranking discounts/special offers
7. as the top reason for liking or following a brand, followed by supporting the
brand and receiving news/updates. While motives vary by industry, region,
etc., it’s clear that value is expected in exchange for the follow.
8. #4 What is the value of a
brand’s Facebook “likes”
and Twitter followers?
Using mass media pricing models, or cost per thousand impressions (CPM),
industry pundits have pegged the value of a Facebook “like” at anywhere
from $3 to $136. However, these estimates are theoretical and imprecise,
with the real answer being zero—until explicit action is taken to acquire,
qualify, and engage fans in a one-to-one manner.
As former Forrester Research analyst Augie Ray writes3,
“The smart marketer will approach the question of value as if
the answer is zero – there is no intrinsic value to a Facebook
fan … What’s the value of an email subscriber if the company
9. never uses the database for anything? … It is what companies do with fans
that creates value, not merely that a brand has fans.”
With consumers showing a clear appetite for discounts and offers, there’s
an opportunity for marketers to monetize likes and followers by engaging
in direct marketing via social media.
10. #5 Beyond listening and
posting, what are next
steps for social marketing?
The following social marketing roadmap helps marketers to identify the
next logical progression for their brand:
Establish Goals – Brands define their social media objectives, as well as the
criteria against which success will be measured.
Build Listen – After establishing their social presence, brands begin
listening and responding to their audiences.
Influence – To increase reach, brands implement basic features (e.g. social
forwarding/sharing) and launch mass campaigns via social channels.
11. Social Opt-in – Brands identify and acquire fans/followers, and enrich their
profiles in a central marketing database. Opt-ins can be acquired through
Facebook Applications, web forms, social sign-on, etc. Regardless of the
mechanism, some value (e.g. games, promotions, access to exclusive
content/deals) is offered in exchange for information.
Engage – Employing direct
marketing principles, brands
engage fans/followers by
delivering relevant, personalized
experiences, including one-to-
one messages and content via
Facebook Apps, Twitter direct
messages, etc. All messages
and offers are coordinated
seamlessly with other channels,
creating consistent cross-
12. #6 How can I use the wealth
of data available on
Social media sites offer
into customers’ interests,
behavior, and sentiment.
Unfortunately, as Forrester
Research notes, “too many
companies remain trapped
by merely monitoring or
passively collecting social
media. Few actually reach
13. Social Intelligence: driving their marketing and business strategy using the
data that social media creates.”4
To achieve social intelligence, marketers must capture social profile data
in their central marketing database, integrating it with data from other
channels/sources to build a single, real-time customer view. This 360-degree
view can then drive intelligent marketing decisions, from segmentation and
personalization strategies to channel, offer selection, and more.
Examples include segmenting influential Twitter followers for a special
offer; sending Facebook fans a special message/offer on their birthday; a
concert promoter leveraging location and likes to inform users when their
favorite bands are coming to town; a publisher leveraging likes to cross-
promote its titles and authors; a bank sending users who check into a new
city a list of nearby ATMs; etc. The possibilities are virtually limitless.
14. #7 Is it ok to capture
social media data in my
Data privacy and security is top-of-mind with consumers and brands alike.
Given the sensitivity, marketers may be hesitant about marrying social
profile data with their traditional marketing datamart. Done properly,
however, there should be no cause for concern. Marketers should:
Obtain Permission – By implementing a social opt-in, brands can obtain
explicit consent to bring social profile data into the marketing database
and use it to deliver increasingly timely, relevant, and effective offers
15. Set Expectations – As with other channels, it’s important to set clear
expectations about what data is being captured and how it will be used.
In addition, don’t capture data that’s not necessary to create relevant,
Never Violate Trust – It goes without saying that social profile data should
never be bought or sold. In general, always be open and honest and never
do anything that could conceivably violate consumers’ trust.
A Facebook App install
exactly what data is
16. #8 How should my
marketing strategies vary
for Facebook vs. Twitter?
Social marketing strategies are very much dictated by the media.
Twitter – Limited to 140 characters, marketers must be concise and action-
oriented, ultimately driving followers to the brand’s website, Facebook
page, YouTube channel, etc. Because of its user base, Twitter is a great
channel for targeting influencers.
Facebook – Marketers have more real estate and options to engage fans
directly within the platform, including:
17. Posts – Can be created and managed like email campaigns, with
a subject, image, body, and call to action. There are even basic
segmentation criteria (e.g. country, city, and language). Because fans
don’t frequently visit brand pages on their own accord, posts should
be used to drive traffic to Apps.
Apps – Can deliver graphically-rich, interactive user experiences that
are fully personalized based on what the brand knows about the
visitor, either via their Facebook profile or data housed in the marketing
database. Options include promotions, games, quizzes, and surveys,
as well as tabs containing personalized offers and other information.
18. #9 What’s the best approach
for engaging users on
Listen, Test, and Measure – Because every community is unique, social
marketing approaches must be tailored to a brand’s audience and business
goals. To determine the right strategy, engage in a continuous cycle of
listening, testing, and measuring.
Offer Value for Time – On social media, you compete for your fans’
mindshare not only with other brands, but their friends and family. Thus,
in exchange for liking or following your brand, they expect immediate
and tangible value—from offers/discounts to some mix of entertaining or
19. Have a Cross-Channel Vision – As Forrester Research says, “Facebook
is not an island. It’s as important to integrate it with the rest of your
marketing as with any other medium.”5 Because consumers interact with
brands via multiple channels, often simultaneously, social media cannot
be managed in isolation. Otherwise, the customer experience—and
business results—will suffer.
20. #10 What’s the best way
to generate social
Many C-level executives believe that social media lacks a measurable
ROI. That’s because, to date, brands have focused primarily on listening
and community management—activities that are resource-intensive and
don’t contribute to the top line. The secret to unlocking social marketing
ROI is applying direct marketing techniques to these channels, including
acquiring permission via social opt-in, capturing social profile data, and
delivering personalized messages/offers that drive sales conversions and
sustainable long-term relationships. By following this approach, social
marketing programs will be more in line with consumer expectations (see
question #3) and ultimately drive more revenue.
21. The value of identifying and acquiring contacts from social media into the
central marketing database cannot be overlooked. Consider the following
example: if a brand converts 5% of its 2,000,000 Facebook likes into
identified contacts (assuming 25% overlap with existing contacts), it will
generate 75,000 net new contacts. Assuming an average value of $20 per
identified contact and an average gross margin of 30%, these contacts will
produce an estimated $750,000 in incremental profit.
22. #11 How can I integrate
social media with other
While features like Share with Your Network (SWYN) or a mobile-optimized
emails might come to mind in terms of blending social, email, and mobile,
effectively bringing social media into the marketing mix should be much
more systemic. That’s because consumers not only interact with brands
via multiple channels; they exert greater control over the terms of
engagement. In order to keep fickle customers engaged, marketers must
deliver an experience that is truly seamless and highly relevant across a
growing spectrum of channels.
Achieving this seamless experience or dialog isn’t built on individual
23. features. It requires an integrated, cross-channel approach to marketing
that’s based on:
Single Customer View – To ensure the latest, most comprehensive
data is driving offer selection and 1:1 personalization
Central Offer Personalization Engine – To fuse inbound and
outbound marketing strategies and deliver 1:1 content and offers,
independent of channel
Seamless Channel Integration – To engage customers and prospects
in sustained, 1:1 conversations, seamlessly across touch points
With these elements in place, marketers can put the customer at the
center of the relationship, and orchestrate timely, relevant messages
driven by their needs, interests, and behavior.
24. #12 How can I create
on social media?
While social media sites have been used primarily as mass marketing
tools to date, there are plenty of opportunities to deliver personalized user
Twitter – Direct Messages (DMs) can be segmented based on numerous
criteria (number of followers, interests, language, location, etc.) and fully
personalized, including the addition of personalized URLs (PURLs).
Facebook – Facebook offers the most personalization potential. On a basic
level, posts on brand pages can be segmented based on the location and
25. language of the visitor. What’s even more valuable, though, is ability to
personalize Facebook Apps. Once a fan subscribes to an app on a brand
page—granting permission to share some of their data—the app content
can be fully personalized using not only Facebook profile data but data
from the CRM database (e.g. customer status, loyalty points, etc.). Using
Facebook Connect, the same level of personalization can be extended
to a brand’s website, creating a seamless, engaging experience across
In addition, there are emerging options for engaging Facebook fans via
one-on-one messages. Once more fully defined and governed, these
options could be particularly useful for delivering real-time transactional
or service messages, alerts, etc.
26. #13 Are there limitations
that could impact social
Perhaps the biggest limitation with social media is how quickly the industry
is changing. From Facebook’s frequent iterations to new sites emerging
on what seems like a daily basis, keeping pace with social media is like
drinking from a fire hose. Brands need the right people, processes, and
technology to quickly identify, assess, and adapt to evolving market
conditions, including potentially restrictive changes.
Take, for instance, Twitter’s daily limit of 250 direct messages (DMs). If
brands are using DMs to send personalized marketing messages, they
need the flexibility to create business rules in their campaign workflows
27. to prioritize recipients and execute messages in waves. Another recent
example was the roll out of Facebook Timeline for Brands, which eliminated
default landing tabs, forcing marketers to adapt their promotion and
28. #14 Is social marketing just
for B2C companies?
Contrary to popular belief, social marketing is not just for B2C companies.
In fact, according to one survey6, more than 93% of B2B marketers use
social media to market their businesses. The same report reveals that
B2B marketers are getting results from social media.
While B2B companies generally have fewer fans than consumer brands, it’s
quality—not quantity—that matters, with 10,000 engaged fans being more
valuable than 10 million passive likes. While LinkedIn is well suited for B2B
marketing, Facebook, Twitter, and others each offer unique opportunities to
educate and engage target audiences with relevant, content.
BM Global Business Services, “From social media to Social CRM: What customers
want,” March 2011
Nielsen, Global Online Survey, Q1 2011
orrester Research, Inc., “What Is The Value Of A Facebook Fan? Zero!”, July 8, 2010,
by Augie Ray
orrester Research, Inc., “The Road Map To Integrating Social And Customer Data,”
October 25, 2011, by Zach Hofer-Shall with Dave Frankland and Allison Smith
orrester Research, Inc., “It’s Time to Make Facebook Marketing Work,” November
28, 2011, by Nate Elliott with Sean Corcoran, Sarah Glass, Sarah Takvorian
ocial Media Examiner, “2012 Social Media Marketing Industry Report,” April 2012