Posts tagged Engage

Shut Up

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Listen to your kids

Social media is not about “creating a narrative” and “delivering interesting stories to your audience.” And branding is not telling people what you stand for.

I take it back. Of course, both those are the case. But they’re far, far from the whole story. As marketers, we’ve always been able to create narratives, deliver interesting stories, and tell people what we stand for.

What social media does is let people tell us if we’re right. The best thing you can do with social media is not push, and not engage. It’s listen.

That doesn’t mean you don’t talk, that you don’t share content. Content is vital. Good content. But use that content as a starting point. How do people respond to it? How do they respond to you? And when do they initiate contact?

Your audience will tell you what your brand is. They’re the ones who see what you put out there, not what you think you put out there. They’ll tell you what that means. Listen to them.

Be their audience.

Photo by Bindaas Madhavi, via Flickr.

Summer Reading (Social Media Marketing Edition)

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The Washington Post usually has a great list of books in a variety of genres. I’m not going to try to match that (although I’m really looking forward to the new Louis Bayard novel), but I do want to share some recent titles that I’ve found valuable. Each is by a thought leader in social media and marketing, and all of them are easy to read.

Content Rules by Ann Handley and C.C. Chapman
As you might guess from the title, this book focuses on the importance of content. I think we can all agree that content is essential–without it, you’re literally talking about nothing. Handley and Chapman provide a valuable look at how to produce substantive content for a variety of platforms, from Twitter to podcasts and white papers. (Ann Handley: @marketingprofs; C.C. Chapman: @cc_chapman)

Engage by Brian Solis

There are two editions, so be sure you buy the new one. I have each, because I bought the first just before the second came out. Solis does a great job of explaining why transparency and trust are vital to the new marketing world, and provides valuable case studies about customer engagement. (@briansolis)

UnMarketing by Scott Stratten
Great book. Stratten just might rule the Twitterverse, and here he provides insight into how every point of contact is important. I’ve long said that the saying ought to be “You only get one chance to make a last impression,” and I’m pretty sure Stratten would agree with that. His book really demonstrates why seemingly inconsequential encounters make a difference, and why “business as usual” just may lose customers. (@unmarketing)

Social Media ROI by Olivier Blanchard
I’m in awe of this book. Blanchard doesn’t just focus on ROI, although wow, will you learn about that. He also provides a social media primer that is a great reference for newcomers and a refresher for those of us with experience. Suggestions on how to develop social media training for your organization, how to persuade reluctant managers to buy in, and more–this book has a wealth of information. Buy it! (@thebrandbuilder)

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