When it comes your social media marketing, not so much. Truth is, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that the relationship between brands and consumers in social media is defined more by conflicting visions than anything resembling shared values.
Simply put, there’s a major divide — a perception gap, in marketing-speak — between how consumers use social networks and how marketers think they do.
How big is the gap? Here’s how it breaks down according to research from the social-business experts at the Pivot Conference:
Top reasons social consumers engage with brands:
- Deals and promotions (83%)
- Rewards programs (70%)
- Exclusive content (58%)
- Feedback on new products (55%)
Top reasons social marketers think consumers engage with their brands
- Insights for buying decisions (59%)
- Customer service (58%)
- Feedback on new products (53%)
- Deals and promotions (53%)
Given how many fans want deals and how relatively few marketers are likely to be offering them, at least consistently, says Shea Bennett of mediabistro, there must be an awful lot of disappointed social media users out there.
It may also explain why so many doctors feel they get so little return on their investment from their marketing efforts on the major social networks. Yes, Facebook and Twitter are where consumers are but that doesn’t mean that’s where they want to discuss their aesthetic concerns or connect with potential providers.
Ultimately, your relationship with consumers is like any other relationship: You need to think about what’s in it for them, what they’re looking for and what they hope to get out of it, rather than what’s in it for you. As marketing expert Richard Meyer says,
Do brand interactions build relationships? No, they don’t. Shared values build relationships. A shared value is a belief that both the brand and consumer have about a brand’s higher purpose or broad philosophy.
That’s a tough message to get across in a Facebook post or 140-character tweet.
Social media is the carrot; your website is what gets visitors to stick
Turning Facebook fans and Twitter followers into actual patients is a two-step process. Use special deals and exclusive offers to get their attention and drive them to a dedicated page on your website. Known as a “landing page,” it shouId include a clear call to action for the offer itself, along with concise copy that highlights your practice philosophy and a link to more information for visitors who are undecided.