Sunday, August 1, 2010

Getting Narrow with Social

Cultivating a broad, engaged and far reaching community of relationships through online channels is an important credibility mark for any social participant.

Facebook friends...LinkedIn connections...Twitter followers and their readers and their comments...these measurements help quantify influence and provide a consistent methodology for the ROI evaluation process.

Yet, community and influence should be viewed merely as an unintended outcome of social media participation. For a social media marketing campaign to truly deliver a high-value and meaningful return it must be aligned with and accountable to the drivers of corporate success -- lead generation, cultivation of prospect relationships and deal capture.

For the better part of three years I have referred to this tactical application of social media as micro-targeting. The engaged community provides an umbrella of credibility that allows a company to more quickly and successfully connect with and influence a set of carefully selected stakeholders.

A meeting last week with an insightful prospective client has me rethinking my social terminology. She compared the use of social media for sales micro-targeting to her company's account-based marketing methodology called narowcasting.

What do you think? Micro-targeting or narrowcasting - which term is the more attractive designation?

In the meantime, here are three current examples of how Strategic Communications Group (Strategic) is helping its clients get narrow through social media:

1. A soon to launch social campaign for a management consultancy will seek to identify sales opportunities in a specific US geography that has experienced a recent in-flow of prospective buyers.

2. Through a well defined content strategy, an enterprise software company will focus much of its social media program on cultivating more intimate relationships with a handful of executive level decision-makers.

3. An information security provider successfully recruited the chief security officer of a major global brand to serve as a guest blogger for their well read and respected social media portal. Our client has yet to provide services to this brand, yet social has served as the platform to initiate discussions.

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