The Secret Sauce Your Digital Tribe Craves

sauceHere’s the take away:

Since BOTH user-generated and brand-generated content shape a brand’s initial impressions, and begin to shape expectations about the brand experience, the effort to set expectations and initial impressions must be considered an essential phase of the Sales process.

During a webinar this afternoon on a new social media platform product, that helps to track–and later attribute–content (created by both the brand and users), it became obvious that more than a few people participating in the event–as well as the presenter–had neglected to recognize the importance of the principle (above) that ties together a brand’s strategic and tactical plans. In this case, the tactics were all about the ways in which a social media campaign can generate measurable ROI.

Participants from diverse industries peppered the chat room (and the moderator) with questions about how to ensure their content will find the right audience. (No, the product wouldn’t help craft the content, nor would it help determine which social media channel, platform, community or tactic would be optimal.)

It was evident that the webinar participants were all in the throes of determining just what content to create, how to create anything other than product promotion messages, and where to put it once it was fully formed.

It is clear that software engineers have outpaced many marketers. The proliferation and promotion of engines, packages, platforms and data analysis software is apparently leading some people to think that strategy is secondary.

What I witnessed today was a chasm that can only be bridged by developing strategies PRIOR to tactics and messages PRIOR to properties. Based on the questions and comments of participants (both B2C and B2B), I could tell that the bridge is also out between Marketing & Sales teams if the Marketers aren’t using the insights generated by the Sales people to uncover–and then supply content that responds directly to–the challenges, hopes, dreams and wishes of customers. These very insights are the raw materials with which to bridge the gap between “what we offer” and “what they want.” Once that’s done, then we can discuss “where they are going to talk about it online” and “what we can do to be a valued participant in the online conversations.”

In the hands of a talented strategist, the insights derived from observations and encounters with current and prospective customers–obtained from social media, among other channels–becomes the information that will:

  • Compel people to visit your online properties,
  • Engage our targeted buyers and influencers with our brand (and your ambassadors), and
  • Motivate the members of your targeted audiences to become enthusiastic members of YOUR digital tribe.

You want to build bridges with social media. You don’t want to take pot shots at it with the digital equivalent of a shotgun. Build a strong bridge, using the best insights you can obtain, and THEN you can maximize the benefit of social media programs/packages and platforms costing $10K and more.

I’ll leave you with this thought:

Exceptional tools can only deliver exceptional results when—and IF—there’s a well-defined strategy for satisfying, and then leveraging your “digital tribe” on, Social Media. There may well be good case studies, but there are no cook books, for ensuring that brand-building content will reach, resonate with, and motivate your particular target audience.

The creation and care of a digital tribe requires constant attentiveness to THEIR drivers and experience. It’s the secret sauce in your successful Social Media content.

If you can’t point to sales metrics that document the effective ROI on your social media messaging, call me at 610-833-8384.

We’ll keep the conversation our secret.


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