Given the fact that social media for marketing is still such a new tool, the techniques and benefits aren’t as clearly defined as more traditional methods. The result has been that many people have tried it, saw little or no result and abandoned it, blaming the tool rather than the technique. For businesses who give people something to get excited about, and then develop relationships with those people, social media has become an invaluable piece of their businesses.
Social Media is the Content, Not The Platform
First off, the term “social media” is thrown around so frequently that it seems to have lost its meaning. Simply put, social media is content that is produced by one source to be shared by many other people. It is not Facebook, Youtube or Twitter – those places are simply the platforms where social media is shared. It’s the videos, photos and posts that you put out into the world that make up your social media marketing.
By making that one simple change in thinking, you will find your outlook and the effectiveness of your campaign will improve dramatically: Give people interesting content, worry about the technical sides of Facebook and Twitter later.
Businesses that focus on the shareable content rather than the platform produce easy to make videos that engage their customers like Makeup by Tiffany, or crowd-sourced gown decisions like BT Wedding. The video, shot with a hand-held camera in her studio got Tiffany nearly 2 million views, and the wedding gown Facebook contest got over 59,000 people engaged on BT’s Page.
Fun tactics like those take some imagination, but they get the people who see them excited about the content, and therefore your business.
When brands focus on the platform, they tend to pump out hundreds of links and posts that are relatively uninteresting. They may get clicks or followers, but they generate no real interest in the brand and therefore no real benefit to the business.
Visual Content Wins, Nearly Every Time
The wedding industry is about image. Whether we’re talking about a magnificent centre-piece or a gorgeous flowing gown, people love weddings because they are beautiful. Given that, why would any bridal marketing strategy be based around text?
Text is for textbooks, what people interesting in weddings want is images, innovation and inspiration. Give them what they’re looking for and they’ll love you for it. A site filled with pictures of your work, a Facebook regularly updates with original photos and videos, and a Pinterest board loaded with inspiring pieces will position your brand as the go-to place for all things bridal.
That positioning delivers you a unique opportunity that businesses have never had before: the chance to connect with the people who love your content and develop relationships with them in a real, meaningful way online. As long as business has existed, businesspeople have been searching for ways to make their customers feel special. That feeling of connection with the brand is what fosters loyalty, return business and referrals. Now, we can do that every day without having to even see the person face to face.
Engage the People Who Love Your Content
Follow-up is where the text element of social media can couple very well with the visual content. Imagine if the authority that you looked up to for inspiration one day reached out to you when you were stuck for ideas and offered some free advice, or found some of your work and complimented it in a public way. With a strong brand presence online, those opportunities become available to you.
The businesses who do this stuff the best are the ones who give freely of what they can easily help people with, and benefit from the support and gratitude that the recipients give back.
For more ideas and discussion about Social Media for the wedding industry, be sure to check back here every Saturday or comment below and Conner will reply to you directly.
Happy Social Saturday!