What are Digital Marketing Rules #1 and #2? Content is King, Conversation is Queen

To my heart’s content

coffee-heart, the myndset digital marketing rules

The Costa Hearts

As the digital wave continues inexorably to be integrated into the marketing plan, brands have to marry a one-way broadcasted message via traditional media with the social media two-way editorial line. The uber challenge is merging and matching the message on traditional media with the one that can be sent in a personalized fashion thanks to ever more sophisticated (“big”) data via the various digital channels, including email, SMS, social media, etc.  The key link is the content.  Yes, the saying of “Content is King” remains royally right.  Brands need to consider what is the kind of content that will be relevant, engaging and shareable for a customer. {Click to Tweet}  Rather than focusing on product features and benefits, brands need to get into the shoes, hearts and minds of their customers, and provide content that is truly of interest for the recipient, all the while being credible and consistent with the brand’s heritage.  {Click to tweet}

Digital Marketing Rule #1: Content is King

Content

– whether as text or increasingly as images and video – is indeed king.  Brands need to be more disciplined in creating an editorial calendar, which can be measured and adjusted according to the customer uptake.  It is important that the number of posts that talk about — or pimp — the brand (i.e. new products, promotions, etc.) be limited.   With a well-balanced editorial line that truly caters to the audience’s needs and wants, a brand will earn the right to post about itself.  In today’s infobese environment, that content must also provide a point of difference.  The old marketing motto “first, best or only” is absolutely on target for creating winning content. {Click to Tweet}

Digital Marketing Rule #2: Conversation is Queen

The second key consideration is conversation.  Rather than focus on broadcasting out messages (i.e. outbound marketing), brands must find more ways to engage and entertain conversations.  Brands need to enable the conversation.  And if the conversation is happening elsewhere, then they should go to where the party is happening!  The key here is to find a sustainable and authentic voice.  The challenge, in a corporate environment, is threefold:

  1. finding a brand voice that is authentic, real-time and relevant having traveled through the different decision-making levels
  2. not looking for immediate “results”
  3. keeping the voice while seeing the individuals behind the wheel change positions (get promoted, leave, etc)

Look who’s talking

Brands don’t talk.  People do.   It follows that a brand’s presence on a social media page, where the message is typed by an individual, should be allowed to evolve organically.  Brands should consider asking informal questions without hidden agendas and they need to reply to customer inquiries in a timely and natural manner.   As my friend Sree Sreevidinasan says, “social media marketing requires a whole lot of good sense.”  {Click to tweet}  Accordingly, consider the participation on the Facebook wall or Twitter stream in the same way you would consider a bona fide wholesome conversation.  Smaller brands — if they have the (human) resources — often come up with the stickier content because they have the challenger mentality, a freer expanse to roam, greater agility and less hierarchy and protocol to overcome.  Yet, some brands that are part of big companies also do a great job: Ben & Jerry’s (Unilever, see below for one of their latest posts), Oreo (Kraft), Red Bull (private) come to mind.  As brand marketers press forward with their investments in digital marketing, it’s worth keeping in mind the above digital marketing rules, but, above all, keeping in mind the entrepreneurial, challenger and “human” touch to one’s social media editorial line.

Herewith a few good social media appetizers for inspiration.

September 1, 2013 from B&J: Quirky sense of humor and an image for my favorite flavor (and a tribute to a great jam band)
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Finding ways to take advantage of news… a recent G-rated newsjacking by Oreo. (July 2013): “Prepare the royal bottle service”

  Cross-referencing another segment to get your message out in a fun way… (end of 2012)

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A statistic for the industry and a sense of humor.  (Autumn 2012)

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In the luxury space, LVMH continues to mesh its “voyage” message with celebrities and product. Very on brand and engaging. (Jan 2013)

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What’s the best conversational post you’ve seen a brand provide?  Your thoughts and comments welcome as ever.

 

 

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