Roger Pike and I just completed a one-hour webinar this week on performing a Social Media Audit and creating a Social Media Policy. Every tradeshow marketer should be aware of these two critical pieces of the marketing puzzle.
Social Media Audit: This portion of the webinar guides you through the process of taking a basic social media audit. It’s something that every company engaged in social media (and if you’re not, why not?) should be doing. Determine your base line and set goals for each social media platform.
Social Media Policy: Every company is engaged in social media, whether they know it or not. Every employee represents your company. How are your employees representing you? Do they know what your expectations are? (go to 21:30 in the video to jump ahead to this section)
I’ll be serving up a 45-minute presentation January 25th at the Outdoor Retailershow in Salt Lake City on “7 Surefire Ways to Re-Energize Your Social Media Engagement at Tradeshows” so I thought I’d blog a bit in the next month leading up to the presentation. Not only does it let you see a bit of what I’ll be speaking about (and may get you to attend if you’re going to the show), but it also helps me to crystalize my thoughts for the presentation!
As the title of the presentation suggests, there are perhaps at least 7 Surefire Ways to Re-Energize Your Social Media Engagement at Tradeshows. However, before getting to all of those seven ways, let’s start with the basics:
First, your company should do a…
Social Media Audit
A social media audit can be an informal look at your social media engagement, which will take only a few hours and no money. Or it can be an in-depth report from A-Z on what your company is doing on social media, so that even the most casual observer can see everything that’s going on.
Here are the main three things you want your social media audit to do:
Come out with a clear understanding of your goals: what do you hope to accomplish with your use of social media (be specific)
Itemize inventory current efforts: where are you now? Blog, FB, etc and are they all interconnected.
Identify resources for expansion: Do you have the wherewithal to take what you’re doing now, expand upon it to reach your goals (digital natives, blog, content creators, identification of those that have the time and expertise to follow up on your plan and to meet your target deadlines and how much time)
A good workable Social Media Company Policy should be more than just what your employees are doing on the job. That’s important, but you should also consider a policy for when they’re allowed to engage in social media, time involved, who can do it, etc; IN most cases, personal interaction should be confined to breaks and lunch. But your policy should also apply to what they can do privately. How can they use your name? When do they represent you and when do they not? Social media is always on and your company’s reputation is a 24-hour consideration. The way that your associates talk about their employment and about your products is out there in cyberspace forever. Your policy should look at how you deal with that discussion. You can’t trample on peoples first amendment rights, but you can control your company brand.
Finally, the policy should be two-pronged: 1) what Can they do and what are they expected to do as employees? And 2) it should make an effort to control what’s important with your brand when they’re away from the office.
Learn to Listen
One of the most important things people can do with social media, and one that I think they do the least often, is to ‘take the temperature’ of their clientele and potential market. Most people seem to believe that social media is a place to go and beat their chests and show how great they are. But that’s only half of what you can do with social media. The other half is the research you can do to uncover facts and tidbits and other information about your market. Social media gives you an invaluable tool for determining where your market is, what its pain points are and which of those pain points have needs that are not being met with existing products. Then you can determine how your products can alleviate that pain, or even give you an idea for a new product.
Up next in this series: #1: Look at what others are doing.