Are You Listening?

How do social media tools work within your marketing plan?  Have you thought of how to integrate Twitter into your public relations strategy?  Is your employer brand reflected properly on LinkedInCan social media augment all of these practices?

All very valid questions…

At this week’s Greater Des Moines Convention and Visitors Bureau Social Media Marketing Workshop hosted by Love Scott and Associates, I led off the discussion with an overview of social media tools and how they integrate into a well planned marketing strategy.  Two other speakers, Claire Celsi ( @ClaireCelsi ), from The Public Relations Project and Ben Stone ( @BenStone ) from RPO Consulting took the helm after me to discuss social media as it integrates with Public Relations and Human Resources, respectively.

For over four hours we took turns stating our case for (and against) social media in traditional corporate marketing, PR, and HR environments.  There was tremendous engagement from a very curious audience and the conversations lasted long past the scheduled 12:pm adjournment.

But when it was time to come back to my office and decompress from the presentations, I thought to myself, “What would ‘C’ level decision-makers need to understand about social media as it applies to their brand?”

And then I thought of this:

“There’s a conversation going on about your brand.  Are you listening?”

(feed readers and Facebookers, click here to watch the video)

…and that was just about 30% of what I found through my Twitter feed, 12 hours before to immediately after the workshop.

It’s time to sit up and start paying attention.  If you’re not using social media to AT LEAST monitor the conversations going on about your brand, then you’re already out of the game.

Here are five simple takeaways from the marketing segment of the workshop:

  1. Traditional broadcast marketing has been augmented with social media marketing, creating an online conversation about your brand.  You must be there to take part in the conversation.
  2. Social Media Marketing is about building community AROUND your brand.
  3. Strategic planning is needed to integrate social media tools with a company’s comprehensive marketing plan.
  4. Social media marketing is measurable, but you need to have goals to measure against.
  5. Social media marketing should not be taken lightly. Finding a marketing partner that understands how the social media tools can integrate your marketing is imperative.

Has your company started integrating social media into its every day marketing, PR or HR strategies?  How well are you listening?

Food for thought.

Keep Cooking (community-driven conversations)
Andrew B. Clark
The Brand Chef