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Are Brands Better Off When They Act Like Their Customers Online?

There’s a lot that can be said for social media, especially when it comes to failures by companies that make the leap in joining the space with a lot of wrong predictions as to what will work best and what its customers want.

What if companies just mimicked the social media habits of its customers?

Say a company’s users are heavy on Twitter and they primarily participate in a couple different ways: Meeting other users, sharing links and stories, and posting videos they make. If you can identify those three characteristics that your customers have in common, who says there’s really a need to come out and create a big flashy campaign to win over those users in the social media sphere.

If your customers are doing A, B, and C… then you should try doing A, B, and C as well.

At this stage in the game companies that seem to experiment and try “new or different things” in social media seem to get a lot more flack then they do praise.  Meanwhile, all the advice for the past year has emphasized the need for companies to focus on the human element.

There’s too much discrepancy between how a company’s customers use social media, and the social media strategy of that company. Meanwhile, there’s still a wealth of brand value, and positive word of mouth to be created by being candid on social media channels, and by not entering into the field with a strategy that contains any blatant attempts to sell on a connection with your customer. If they are sharing relevant news stories, do the same. Behave in a manner that’s familiar with your customers and give them another reason to want to connect.

What happens now to companies who enter social media and play it safe, by using social media in the same way that its users do?  It’s a safe way to build genuine relationships with customers.

While your playing it safe, and actually growing your relationship with customers, you also position yourself perfectly as an entity that customers care enough about to give suggestions or complaints to. Be positioned to let your customers build the innovations around you. No guessing necessary.

Can being “safe” by copying user behaviour, actually be the better choice?

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