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  • Expansion Plus, Inc.

    September 2009

    Authored by: Sally Falkow, Principal & Social Media Strategist

    Copyright © 2004 – 2010 Expansion Plus, Inc.

    Social Media Strategy

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    Table of Contents

    1. Social Media overview Page 2

    2. Listen to Conversations Page 3 - 7

    3. Establish Share of Voice Page 8 - 9

    4. Set Goal/Benchmark Page 10 - 12

    5. Find Bloggers and Communities Page 13 - 15

    6. Identify Influencers Page 16 - 17

    7. Develop a Content Strategy Page 18 - 19

    8. Pick Tools Page 20 - 21

    9. Create and Deliver the Content Page 22 - 24

    10. Engage and Facilitate Conversations Page 25 - 28

    11. Measure Results Page 29 – 31

    12. Conclusion Page 32

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    Social Media Strategy

    Social Media Overview

    The social web – Web 2.0 – has given rise to a new way of marketing: people

    are engaged in conversations online and, as

    predicted by the Cluetrain Manifesto - markets have

    become conversations.

    The most trusted form of advertising today is a

    recommendation from another person ‘just like me.’

    Tapping into these conversations shows where your

    audience is spending time online and what subjects

    and issues are of interest to them.

    Based on today’s ever-changing marketplace,

    companies can no longer just issue information to the

    media in hopes that they share our clients’ stories with

    the public. A recent prediction from Forrester

    Research is that within two years, half of all U.S. newspapers will have ceased


    By 2010 82% of all companies will be using social media marketing and their

    biggest barrier to success in this new medium is a lack of knowledge.

    To reach your publics successfully you need to start telling your stories directly,

    and do it in a way that sparks conversations.

    The value proposition of Social Media (Web 2.0) or online PR is:

    Sustained conversations that shape perceptions.

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    Social Media Strategy – E+ Whitepaper | September 2009

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    Listen to the Online Conversation

    For the past 100 years companies have had the luxury of deciding what they will

    produce and sell, what their brand message will be and how they will deliver it

    to their audience.

    The Internet changed that.

    We’re in the age of social media marketing. Strategy in this new business

    environment is just as vital as it has ever been. Don’t get distracted by the slew

    of new social media tools or lured into spending resources just because

    “everyone is on Twitter.”

    Social media offers you the opportunity of doing in-depth research at virtually

    no cost. It is possible to set goals and get ROI, but you have to know where

    you’re going and what you want to achieve. Tap into the online conversations

    to find out:

    • who is talking about you

    • what they are saying

    • is it positive or negative

    • where are the conversations taking place

    • what communities talk about you

    • what are your competitors doing in social media

    • what’s the buzz about them

    • what content resonates with your audience

    • are there subjects of interest you could provide content for

    • what social sites have the most conversation

    • who are the “fire-starters” you need to connect with

    • who are the influencers in these blogs or communities

    • where are the opportunities and threats

    Once you have this information you can allocate your resources wisely. You’ll

    know where to start and what social sites you should be concentrating on.

    When you know the lay of the land it’s much easier to plot a path to your

    destination. A social media marketing strategy is your roadmap.

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    DIY – Free Tools

    Brand mentions

    Google News Alerts

    Yahoo News


    How Sociable


    RSS Reader like NetVibes

    Blog Buzz

    Google BlogSearch



    Backtype – for blog comments


    Twitter Search






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    Google Trends

    Google Insights for Search





    Message Boards and Forums



    Google Groups

    Yahoo Groups

    Multi Media




    Viral Video Chart



    Now that you know just how much there is to be tracked, here are some of the

    paid tools that can do a lot of the heavy lifting for you.

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    Subscription Tools



    Nielsen BuzzMetrics



    Visible Technologies


    Techrigy SM2


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    Establish Your Share of Voice

    There are millions of conversations online every day. When you tap into the ones

    about your industry, what share of voice do you have?

    Share of Voice is defined as the percentage of the mentions that are about your

    brand/company/organization in the particular niche or market you’re active in.

    Do people use a generic description of what you do, or do they talk about your

    products or services specifically?

    Example: Do women talk about dry skin treatment and natural skin care

    products or do they mention specific brands and products? Do they mention

    your product? What percentage of the total conversation about dry skin

    mentions your products?

    Are the comments positive or negative? What is the ratio of positive/negative?

    Are your key messages appearing in these conversations? If not, what content is

    trending? How are your competitors faring in these conversations?

    The context of your content in a competitive set shows how your brand stacks

    up against competitors online.

    Markets are Conversations

    Share of voice leads to market share. Establishing and tracking share of voice

    used to be a advertising metric, but since the most trusted form of advertising is

    now conversations, it’s become an important one for social media.

    A gain in Share of Voice is an important measurement for social media


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    Setting Goals and Benchmarks

    Listening to the online conversation allows you to tap into what people are

    interested in right now, what they talk about, what they like and dislike.

    This information will give you the insights that lead to the goals you should pursue

    in social media.

    Everyone on the team has to agree on what target you're aiming for, and how

    you'll know when you hit it... or not! And set the benchmarks before you start so

    you know what you're measuring and where you are now. Then you can go

    forward and track your progression.

    Here are some common business goals for social media:

    Brand Reputation: The "Dell Hell" conversation caused a flood of negative

    comments about Dell's customer service. They set a goal to reverse the problem.

    The ratio of positive to negative comments became one of their key

    performance e indicators and they have definitely achieved their goal.

    Increased Brand Awareness: Skin MD Natural launched their lotion in social

    media and created interes