As I voted this morning in the 4th Annual Mashable Awards, I realized that the world of social media is growing almost beyond my comprehension. In business, is it possible to learn about, apply and succeed with so many new online tools?
The question got me thinking about something I heard during an interactive panel discussion at a recent Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) seminar. When asked what we need to stop, start and continue doing with regard to social media, Rob Fishman, social media manager at The Huffington Post, said, “We need to start getting back to basics.”
Rob, I couldn’t agree more. Most of us know that social media tools are just that…tools to communicate the messages we’ve always conveyed to our audience. But so many people and organizations out there want to jump into the shiny, new pool headfirst, and their messages can get lost in the shuffle.
To keep us all grounded in this ever-changing arena, we need to remember to get back to basics when launching a social media promotion or using social media to tout a product or service. Here are three tips to help you do that:
- Give the People What They Want – Consumers turn to your brand for a reason. Whether it is to be informed, serviced or entertained, always keep your audience in mind and deliver to them, not always what they expect, but what they want.
- KISS: Keep It Simple, Stupid – Sign up, then we’ll email you a special code to use online. You’ll tweet that using our handle and 29-character hashtag, which will get you entered for a drawing to submit your video on Facebook. I think you get the point.
- Never Tell a Lie – The language might be more casual; the tone more fun. But communicating via social media channels requires the same transparency and honesty of other platforms. Don’t exaggerate or make promises you can’t keep.
By getting back to basics, who knows? You could be the “Must-Follow Brand” at the 5th Annual Mashable Awards.