Social media needs

A friend of mine went to a Social Media for Small Business conference recently. He’s a small business owner, and has been thinking about using social media for a while.

He enjoyed the conference and made some great connections while there. Yet something he said worries me, and that’s the need to be everywhere.

According to the social media expert that was speaking at the conference, businesses need to be on as many social media channels as they can. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Ning, blogging, Facebook Places, Tumblr, etc – the list goes on.

The reasoning? You never know where your customer is going to be, so you need to be in all the places they could be.

Bullcrap.

You can (and do) know where your customer is going to be by doing the research – a social media audit, for example.

Because of this map, you can tell demographics, spend decisions, social network use, optimum time of day for social network use and promotions, and much, much more.

You can then use this information to understand where you need to be, when you need to be there, and what you need to be saying/doing while there. This targeted approach makes sure no-one’s wasting their time, and goals can be set and results measured.

It’s not rocket science – it’s a marketing strategy.

Saying you need to be on every site because your customers might be is like saying you need to advertise in every single newspaper because some of your customers might read it.

Sure, they might. But if your customers are vegetarians, would you advertise in Slaughterhouse Weekly?

No – so why take that approach with your social media strategy? Instead, be where you need to be.

Make sense?

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Danny Brown
Co-author Influence Marketing: How to Create, Manage and Measure Brand Influencers in Social Media Marketing. #1 marketing blog in world as per HubSpot. Husband. Father. Optimist. Pragmatist. Never says no to a good single malt. You can find me on Twitter - Google+ - LinkedIn.

93 comments
SuzanneMannion
SuzanneMannion

Danny, we are in totally agreement. A key component of a proposed social media strategy is the WHERE.  You can't be all things to all people, after all.  BUT, a point to consider - as a communications agency, we aim to be in as many places as we can be so that 1) we understand the options for our clients and 2) we're scoping new business opps!

SuzanneMannion
SuzanneMannion

Danny, we are in totally agreement. A key component of a proposed social media strategy is the WHERE.  You can't be all things to all people, after all.  BUT, a point to consider - as a communications agency, we aim to be in as many places as we can be so that 1) we understand the options for our clients and 2) we're scoping new business opps!

AmyMccTobin
AmyMccTobin

OK, thanks for writing the post I wanted to write, but actually getting it done:)

AmyMccTobin
AmyMccTobin

OK, thanks for writing the post I wanted to write, but actually getting it done:)

penneyfox
penneyfox

How ironic is this ... I just said this same thing on Tuesday to the attendees of my social media class! I was giving an example of why you don't need to buy every type of media out there if your customers aren't watching that show or listening to that station. And then I said, 'and you don't have to be on EVERY social media program just because its out there.' I swear, I've never seen so many looks of relief on so many faces in one room. One of them even mouthed the words to me 'thank God' and then relaxed his whole body.

 

And now I get to say the dorky thing we marketing folks say -- this is SO spot on! It is about the strategy and finding out where your customers hang out. Over the past few months, I've been blogging about my research about the top target audiences and where they log on and how they use social networks. Amazing stuff when we see the same lifestyle and behavior differences in social media as we do with traditional media.

penneyfox
penneyfox

How ironic is this ... I just said this same thing on Tuesday to the attendees of my social media class! I was giving an example of why you don't need to buy every type of media out there if your customers aren't watching that show or listening to that station. And then I said, 'and you don't have to be on EVERY social media program just because its out there.' I swear, I've never seen so many looks of relief on so many faces in one room. One of them even mouthed the words to me 'thank God' and then relaxed his whole body.   And now I get to say the dorky thing we marketing folks say -- this is SO spot on! It is about the strategy and finding out where your customers hang out. Over the past few months, I've been blogging about my research about the top target audiences and where they log on and how they use social networks. Amazing stuff when we see the same lifestyle and behavior differences in social media as we do with traditional media.

Rhysorwin
Rhysorwin

Since I found out you were Scottish I read everything you write in a Scottish accent, it makes it even more entertaining. But anyway, yeah let's all be everywhere and have no time to build relationships and make connections oh and to boot, let's post the same content on all platforms so people who follow us on multiple networks get to see everything more than once. Great idea, solid strategy.

Rhysorwin
Rhysorwin

Since I found out you were Scottish I read everything you write in a Scottish accent, it makes it even more entertaining. But anyway, yeah let's all be everywhere and have no time to build relationships and make connections oh and to boot, let's post the same content on all platforms so people who follow us on multiple networks get to see everything more than once. Great idea, solid strategy.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich

OFGS. I want to punch people in the face when they give this kind of advice. They clearly are not small business owners if they're saying "be everywhere." Yes, you can research and find out where your customers and prospects are participating. Find the ONE channel they hang out the most and start there. Crap. Now I feel like I have to blog about this.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich

OFGS. I want to punch people in the face when they give this kind of advice. They clearly are not small business owners if they're saying "be everywhere." Yes, you can research and find out where your customers and prospects are participating. Find the ONE channel they hang out the most and start there. Crap. Now I feel like I have to blog about this.

Howie Goldfarb
Howie Goldfarb

Considering we on average spend less than 20 minutes a day on Social Media but on average watch over 4 hrs of TV and spend 4 hrs surfing the net/consuming entertainment my question to the Guru is why should businesses use social media. It isn't scalable. You can only 'connect' with a small percent of your customers. And only a small percent want to connect with you. So why use a niche technology for marketing. For a brick and mortar often your street sign, location, storefront and customer service will blow away all marketing.

 

So who is the guru gnu for you?

HowieSPM
HowieSPM

Considering we on average spend less than 20 minutes a day on Social Media but on average watch over 4 hrs of TV and spend 4 hrs surfing the net/consuming entertainment my question to the Guru is why should businesses use social media. It isn't scalable. You can only 'connect' with a small percent of your customers. And only a small percent want to connect with you. So why use a niche technology for marketing. For a brick and mortar often your street sign, location, storefront and customer service will blow away all marketing.   So who is the guru gnu for you?

Andrea T.H.W.
Andrea T.H.W.

Man, am I wrong if I say that usually those who tell you that you must be everywhere are usually those selling services which help you to be everywhere? Or at least are affiliate to someone who does?

 

Also is not only be where you have to be but be where you can be according to the time you have. Unless someone has a third party service to be everywhere he has to do it on his own and beside burning out sooner or later he has to reduce the time he does something else and if you can't take it from work it means family, friends and free recharging time. Not good for health. Another reason to stick to one or two social networks. And if he has more free time he can read some blogs and comment there which surely, as regards personal knowledge, are billions times better than any social network. Imho. :)

 

Great post Danny. But next time I'd like to read something on "tweet every hour" rule. :D

Andrea T.H.W.
Andrea T.H.W.

Man, am I wrong if I say that usually those who tell you that you must be everywhere are usually those selling services which help you to be everywhere? Or at least are affiliate to someone who does?   Also is not only be where you have to be but be where you can be according to the time you have. Unless someone has a third party service to be everywhere he has to do it on his own and beside burning out sooner or later he has to reduce the time he does something else and if you can't take it from work it means family, friends and free recharging time. Not good for health. Another reason to stick to one or two social networks. And if he has more free time he can read some blogs and comment there which surely, as regards personal knowledge, are billions times better than any social network. Imho. :)   Great post Danny. But next time I'd like to read something on "tweet every hour" rule. :D

Mark Longbottom
Mark Longbottom

Excellent as ever. Best ting to do is walk away and make sure you know  who you are as a business and who you want to talk to, it is definitely not everyone. As you say Danny be where you need to be, where the relevant not irrelevant people are. The ones who want to know  what you  do, the ones who will be loyal and share information about you  with their contacts. Being everywhere is what keeps  people thinking they are important in  a 1980's way. A sociable internet means you can be more specific and effective with your  time and money and you can and are allowed  to have FUN....

Mark Longbottom
Mark Longbottom

Excellent as ever. Best ting to do is walk away and make sure you know  who you are as a business and who you want to talk to, it is definitely not everyone. As you say Danny be where you need to be, where the relevant not irrelevant people are. The ones who want to know  what you  do, the ones who will be loyal and share information about you  with their contacts. Being everywhere is what keeps  people thinking they are important in  a 1980's way. A sociable internet means you can be more specific and effective with your  time and money and you can and are allowed  to have FUN....

Leon
Leon

G'Day Danny,

I just wish you'd stop posting all this stuff that I agree with, Then I wouldn't have to leave another of those "Amen to that you Celtic Wizard!" type comments.

 I always thought that It was John Wooden who said "Nothing is so important as the proper execution of the fundamentals." Turns out he didn't but no one knows who did. Anyway, the fundamentals of marketing are simple: have a crystal clear business focus and a specific narrow target market. And never spend a cent on marketing to anyone else.

 

But your story is further grist for my mill that www is absolutely chockers with wheel reinventors and lousy advice from people who don't know what they don't know. And I can guarantee that it was Mark Twain who said, "It aint what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for certain that just aint so."

 

As my banjo plucking mate Bix Berry always says: "Marketing Isn't everything, but everything is marketing." 

 

Go Boston!

 

Best Wishes

Leon

Leon
Leon

G'Day Danny, I just wish you'd stop posting all this stuff that I agree with, Then I wouldn't have to leave another of those "Amen to that you Celtic Wizard!" type comments.  I always thought that It was John Wooden who said "Nothing is so important as the proper execution of the fundamentals." Turns out he didn't but no one knows who did. Anyway, the fundamentals of marketing are simple: have a crystal clear business focus and a specific narrow target market. And never spend a cent on marketing to anyone else.   But your story is further grist for my mill that www is absolutely chockers with wheel reinventors and lousy advice from people who don't know what they don't know. And I can guarantee that it was Mark Twain who said, "It aint what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for certain that just aint so."   As my banjo plucking mate Bix Berry always says: "Marketing Isn't everything, but everything is marketing."    Go Boston!   Best Wishes Leon

Anders Michael
Anders Michael

Very refreshing, thanks Danny! We get overloaded with social media strategies, and when we do, we sometimes forget the basic idea of what we're trying to accomplish. Distinguishing the difference between what we "need" to so versus which smart approach will best brand and generate the targeted clientele is essential. It's a challenge to identify the best social media strategy, but always worth investigating time into. Quality vs. Quantity. Bravo.

Anders Michael
Anders Michael

Very refreshing, thanks Danny! We get overloaded with social media strategies, and when we do, we sometimes forget the basic idea of what we're trying to accomplish. Distinguishing the difference between what we "need" to so versus which smart approach will best brand and generate the targeted clientele is essential. It's a challenge to identify the best social media strategy, but always worth investigating time into. Quality vs. Quantity. Bravo.

Ryan Hanley
Ryan Hanley

Danny,

 

The be everywhere all the time mentality I associate with the be everything to everyone mentality... 

 

It's impossible and you're never at your best when attempting this.

 

I'm glad you straightened out your buddy!!

 

Also looking forward to your thoughts on that email I sent.

 

Thanks!!

 

Ryan H.

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @SuzanneMannion That's a fair point, Suzanne - agencies and advisors definitely need to check out the space to make sure they help with the right strategy too (and spot future trends!). Thanks for the addition.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @SuzanneMannion That's a fair point, Suzanne - agencies and advisors definitely need to check out the space to make sure they help with the right strategy too (and spot future trends!). Thanks for the addition.

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @AmyMccTobin I can rename it to, "Be The Content That Amy Should Have Written, NOT The One She Did Write"? :)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @AmyMccTobin I can rename it to, "Be The Content That Amy Should Have Written, NOT The One She Did Write"? :)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @penneyfox It's the fear factor - unscrupulous con artists trying to weasel out as much money as they can before they're found out for the fakes they are. Sadly, they prey on those that need the help the most, and leave them floundering while they move on to their next victims.

 

Thankfully there are folks like you out there keeping it real, miss - cheers!

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @penneyfox It's the fear factor - unscrupulous con artists trying to weasel out as much money as they can before they're found out for the fakes they are. Sadly, they prey on those that need the help the most, and leave them floundering while they move on to their next victims.   Thankfully there are folks like you out there keeping it real, miss - cheers!

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @Rhysorwin Ah, but if yer no' oan aw th' networks then ye cannae be takin' yersel seriously enough, ye ken? Then wha' huv ye t'blame but yersel? Ye ken?

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @Rhysorwin Ah, but if yer no' oan aw th' networks then ye cannae be takin' yersel seriously enough, ye ken? Then wha' huv ye t'blame but yersel? Ye ken?

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @ginidietrich Did you blog about it?

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @HowieSPM I see social media as the relationship to the sale. The hard work is done elsewhere - peer commenting, search, more peer commenting then purchase - but the icebreaker of which brand to deal with can be easier via social.

 

As for my guru gnu? That's be Rolf Harris. Or @Leon . :)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @HowieSPM I see social media as the relationship to the sale. The hard work is done elsewhere - peer commenting, search, more peer commenting then purchase - but the icebreaker of which brand to deal with can be easier via social.   As for my guru gnu? That's be Rolf Harris. Or @Leon . :)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @Andrea T. H. W. There's a "big name" in social media that rails against automation wherever he can. His mantra? if you're not going to be there to answer, don't bother. Bull.

 

There's no way in hell most people and business owners can be on 24/7, yet why should that stop them running promotions, or sales offers, or simply share great content?

 

Some people... ;-)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @Andrea T. H. W. There's a "big name" in social media that rails against automation wherever he can. His mantra? if you're not going to be there to answer, don't bother. Bull.   There's no way in hell most people and business owners can be on 24/7, yet why should that stop them running promotions, or sales offers, or simply share great content?   Some people... ;-)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @Mark Longbottom EXACTLY! Truer words never spoken, mate, and the next post on here is going to delve a little more into your point on those that are loyal and share, and where that falls in the sales funnel.

 

Cheers, mate!

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @Mark Longbottom EXACTLY! Truer words never spoken, mate, and the next post on here is going to delve a little more into your point on those that are loyal and share, and where that falls in the sales funnel.   Cheers, mate!

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @Leon I recall this marketing whiz come up with this "mega strategy" that would blow the competition away, because it was so new and unheard of.

 

He went on to share what it was, and at the end of a very long 15 minute spiel, I couldn't help but think, "You've just shared the @hubspot model - but in a completely non-strategic and non-scalable way. You idiot."

 

Like you say, mate, you don't have to reinvent. But at least be a little smart... ;-)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @Leon I recall this marketing whiz come up with this "mega strategy" that would blow the competition away, because it was so new and unheard of.   He went on to share what it was, and at the end of a very long 15 minute spiel, I couldn't help but think, "You've just shared the hubspot model - but in a completely non-strategic and non-scalable way. You idiot."   Like you say, mate, you don't have to reinvent. But at least be a little smart... ;-)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

 @Anders Michael The ironic thing is, mate, if you spend the time doing the legwork, you'll save yourself a hell of a lot more than just time in the long run (and even some of the short run). So why's that so difficult a concept to grasp? ;-)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @Anders Michael The ironic thing is, mate, if you spend the time doing the legwork, you'll save yourself a hell of a lot more than just time in the long run (and even some of the short run). So why's that so difficult a concept to grasp? ;-)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

 @Ryan Hanley Hell, even my wife @JacStar can't do everything, and she's awesome! :)

 

Loved the email, mate, running on Monday coming - cheers!

AmyMccTobin
AmyMccTobin

 @DannyBrown I think you SHOULD do that. Right now.

Leon
Leon

 @DannyBrown  @HowieSPM Youse blokes aren't gunna believe this; my wife once repaired Rolf Harris' trousers! And there was a time many years ago when I was constantly mistaken for Rolf at airports and various functions. Of course, I'm younger.......! And Poorer.

 

Best Wishes

Leon

Leon
Leon

 @DannyBrown  @HowieSPM Youse blokes aren't gunna believe this; my wife once repaired Rolf Harris' trousers! And there was a time many years ago when I was constantly mistaken for Rolf at airports and various functions. Of course, I'm younger.......! And Poorer.   Best Wishes Leon

Andrea T.H.W.
Andrea T.H.W.

 @DannyBrown I agree if they don't plaster your account tweeting every ten minutes about useless things, there is FB for that. ;D

 

But if someone has something interesting to share then can tweet as needed. Which is what I usually do tweeting and fbooking comments, but only because I only read interesting blogs. ;D

Andrea T.H.W.
Andrea T.H.W.

 @DannyBrown I agree if they don't plaster your account tweeting every ten minutes about useless things, there is FB for that. ;D   But if someone has something interesting to share then can tweet as needed. Which is what I usually do tweeting and fbooking comments, but only because I only read interesting blogs. ;D

Mark Longbottom
Mark Longbottom

 @DannyBrown as ever looking forward  to reading your next post.....