A few days ago there was an article that was posted on the Management Today website called: The top five professional services searched for on Twitter.
The article says that ‘over the past two years, there has been a 663% increase in people using Twitter to ask for business recommendations’.
According to Orange Business, the top five sectors who are benefiting from recommendations on Twitter are:
- Web Designers;
- Architects; and
Now, you might be asking what this has to do with ‘Customer Focused Strategies to Grow Your Business’ the stated objective of this blog? The answer is simply that if your customers are there talking about your industry and asking for recommendations then why are you not there, why are you not visible and why are you not taking this opportunity to get to know your customers better and to build better relations with them?
The Management Today article finishes by saying:
“So, if you fall into one of the top five sectors generating leads from Twitter and you’re not on the social network yet, don’t be a twit. Start tweeting.”
However, for many firms this poses a very real problem….how to get started and what to focus on?
With that in mind, I thought I’d share with you a framework that I have used with clients to help them better understand the social media environment and plan what they want to do and achieve.
The framework breaks the social media environment and activity into 4 areas: Create, Curate, Connect and Converse.
If you look at how firms are successfully using social media to connect with customers then you will see that they will be doing many, if not all, of these areas.
- ‘Create’ is all about what content you are generating to help you get found and help your customers whether it is a blog, white papers, case studies, client testimonials, useful videos etc etc.
- The reality is that if you think about your customer’s journey many will ‘consume’ a lot of your thinking and your value add before they have spoken to you, met you, or emailed you. Therefore, make anything you ‘create’ both interesting and interested in them.
- ‘Curate’ is all about finding and sharing things that your customers will find useful.
- Firms need to remember that it’s not always about them and their level of expertise but also about what they know and share about what is going around them. If you are just talking about yourself then that is just another form of broadcast.
- “Connect’ is all about being in the right places and on the right platforms that will allow firms to identify and connect with their customers. The Management Today article shows that many customers are searching on social networks and are looking for referrals and recommendations. If they are there and you are there then you maximise the likelihood of getting recommended and also make it easier to get recommended.
- ‘Converse’ is all about allowing you to converse on blogs or Twitter in order to help your customers. However, doing it in a social way makes it transparent, allows you to showcase your helpfulness, your knowledge and your opinions. Whether, you use the ‘Converse’ element for your customer service or business development give people the opportunity to see you being social and helpful.
Finally, this framework doesn’t mean that you need to do all of the C’s. In fact, there are examples of firms that are only active in one or two areas.
But, I hope the framework is helpful in breaking down the social media environment and where to get started. In addition, I hope it will give you a head-start on thinking about what to concentrate on with the aim of getting the most out of your social media activity and ultimately developing your skills and activity in all four areas.
If you want help getting started then just let me know by getting in touch here.
Thanks to NuageDeNuit | Chiara Vitellozzi for the image.