A couple of years ago we published an eBook with the title: “The five most important social media acronyms”. When I was asked to be the keynote speaker at an event for entrepreneurs in London a few weeks ago, the notion of the 5 TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms) resurfaced, and ended up being central to the talk. What the entrepreneurs wanted to know was how to come up with and execute their own social media strategy; I was very pleased to realise that the eBook content not only was still valid, it was also somewhat predictive at the time it was published. There was the 6th TLA that had to be added though… POC (Private Online Communities)… so here are the (now) 6 TLAs that every business should understand and employ “seamlessly integrated” (I know it’s a tired cliché but very true and necessary in this case):
The best way to showcase the importance of these 6 TLAs and the way they should be “seamlessly integrated” is to weave them into a short story, here goes:
“Fiona, the marketing director of Sunbucks – a chain of coffee shops – wants to look at web listening for one of her company’s brands. She googles “web listening” and DigitalMR comes up first on the first page of Google (1.SEO/2.SEM). She clicks on the link that takes her to the social listening page on the DigitalMR website. Once there, Fiona watches the video clip and reads a few lines about the benefits and differentiators of listening247. She then clicks on the call-to-action button to request a demo. She is taken to a landing page that was created by Ellen – a DigitalMR marketer who is not a scripter/programmer, but just knows how to use the intuitive and simple CMS (3.). Once on the landing page, she enters her details in order to request a demo for social media monitoring (5. SMM). Fiona is now registered as a lead in the CRM (4.) and Ellen contacts her via email in order to arrange an online demo with one of the DigitalMR consultants. During the demo, Colin – the DigitalMR consultant – demonstrates how social listening and social analytics is done, and explains the importance of discussion themes, sub-themes, and sentiment accuracy. Fiona asks about the possibility of finding influencers and using them as brand ambassadors. This prompts Colin to explain the power of integrating social listening with an online community (6. POC) for co-creation and customer advocacy.
A more generic way to explain the use and connection of the 6 TLAs is outlined in the list below:
Be present at the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT) when prospective customers will search for products and services in your sector (SEO/SEM). Become part of the conversation.
With a simple and intuitive CMS maintain full control of your website’s content, updating the latter as often as possible in order to continuously optimise your SEO. A blog on the website serves this purpose quite well.
After prospects find your digital content through online search (e.g. Google) they should provide their contact details in one of your inbound/content marketing landing pages in order to access your valuable content. The lead contact details are stored in your CRM so that you can nurture them toward a sale.
In order to be part of the conversation on social media you have to understand which segments of your clients/prospects are out there posting, responding or just reading posts. You also need to understand which are the hot topics so that you can produce content around those topics/themes. The only way to do this is by having access to a social media monitoring and analytics tool (SMM).
It gets better even though this is already impressive enough: Creative customers/prospects or influencers in your sector can be discovered through social listening and invited to join online communities (POC) so that they can help with the creation of digital content that will resonate with their peers. Not only that, they can then share the digital content which is the result of co-creation with their friends and networks.
With the addition of online communities we complete a full circle connecting back to being part of the conversation when prospective customers ask a question or when they look for valuable content using search engines. The content created on an online community has a lot more chances to be sought after at the ZMOT since it was created by the same people that it is targeting.
With an approach like the one described above, an organisation has the possibility to reach millions of customers without having to use any of the traditional mass media. Amplified customer advocacy is definitely a lot cheaper than TV commercials! On top of that, the messaging is more believable simply because it is not an advertisement; it is shared by other customers of the product or service that can be trusted more than brand advertising.
Does this sound too good to be true?