Internet marketing is great. Really great. I mean, I (and a number of the people reading this right now) do it for a living; how could we not love it? Internet marketing, to me, is like having a talent agent. She or he is there for you to find interesting and challenging opportunities – that will hopefully make you some money – but without the “talent,” itself, most of these opportunities will be wasted. Anyone can score a gig eventually, but it’s the ones who have that “certain something” that really shine. Not following? Try reading the above metaphor as a sports reference and see if that makes you more comfortable.
What I’m talking about here – what I mean by that “certain something” – is quality content. Chutzpah. Adaptability. Substance.
Write Something People Want to Share
Social media is just that: social. People connect on collective platforms and discuss how they feel about certain things, and that’s the point. Whether it’s a “like” or comment on Facebook, or a retweet on Twitter, the goal should be to establish and facilitate a dialogue. Get people talking about what is important to you or your brand; even if it’s your personal brand.
We all know those people who update with things like, “thinking about eating a sandwich,” or, “just bought some new jeans,” or some other meaningful gem like that. Although sandwiches are very important to me, I’m probably not going to ask whether you opted for mustard or mayo. Talk about things that matter to people. Let your “audience” do the work for you; not because they feel obligated to do so, but because they believe in what your brand has to say.
Unicorn Booty is great at creating a quality dialogue that people want to be a part of.
Believe it or Not, Everything is Written
Everyone knows those TV ads; the ones where you’re like, “there’s no way someone wrote this.” Newsflash: not only was it written, but it went through multiple levels of approval to get to where it is. Don’t be that brand.
If you’re willing to put your content out into the free world, make sure it’s something you’re proud of. Everyone makes mistakes; sometimes even bad press is still good press. Other times bad press is just embarrassing.
Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery. Alright, I can buy that. So take a look at what the brands and companies you admire are doing and find a way to make it your own. Style yourself after those you respect, but don’t be afraid to take it a step further. Just keep in mind that you always have to be true to your brand because people will know if you’re faking. This is not as easy as it sounds. There are very few individuals who actually understand her or his self, let alone brands that do. Take some time and figure it out. And once you do, give your brand the personality it deserves. That doesn’t mean that it has to be “edgy” or “over the top,” it just has to be real. Give it life. Let it breathe.
DrinkNeuro exemplifies the epitome of “brand personality” by giving each flavor a distinct tone and style of language.
And last, but certainly not least…
History has never been made by playing it safe. Sure, there’s a difference between taking risks and generally making bad decisions. I’m not suggesting that you take your brand down some sort of dark alleyway; I’m just saying that there’s always that chance that taking the unbeaten path may lead to a more rewarding destination. Social media provides people with the opportunity to leave breadcrumbs, of sorts. We can see what we’ve done, where we’ve been, and who we’ve connected with. This type of virtual map also affords us the opportunity to see where future opportunities may lie. Don’t be afraid to push boundaries where it’s appropriate; because if you’re not leading, you’re following.
If Internet marketing is the coach of a brand’s team, then social media is the point guard. (Happy now?) Internet marketing may have an overall idea and strategy that allows for social media and the rest of the marketing team to bring home a “W,” but what it really comes down to is a team’s fundamentals. Chutzpah. Adaptability. Substance.
Write good content. Say what matters. The rest will come naturally. And if it doesn’t, there will always be groupies to convince someone otherwise.