By Rose Odengo
Earlier this year, a client asked me to justify social media as a tool to grow his bottom line. He knew he needed it somehow, but it didn’t make sense to him. The first logical response, “You need to engage with their consumer where they are most comfortable.” I began. Then we talked about YouTube. We both laughed when we admitted to each other that we wait for the 4 seconds to “Skip Ad”.
“How effective are those kinds of ads?” He asked.
“It’s about how engaging the first 3 seconds of your story is.” I responded.
“What do you mean story?”
“People genuinely don’t care about the product you are selling, it’s how you make them feel about your product that draws them to you. They need to feel something. And the feeling needs to be strong.”
He fell silent and sipped his water and drummed his fingers on the table. I sipped my drink and he finally let out a pregnant sigh that reverberated in his chest.
“So, how do we do this?” he finally spoke up.
“I will take you back to the beginning of our conversation. Who is your target audience, remember the example I gave you of music. What you and your wife like vs, your children? You have different tastes. Who needs your product?”
“So do I need to open all these different social media platforms?” He inquired quite agitated.
“No, you don’t. Once you know who your target consumer is, we can then select the best platforms to engage with them, which will determine the kind of content you will need to create.”
“Anyone can use my product,” he retorted more agitated.
“No it’s not for everyone; it’s not for children…” I was quickly interrupted.
“Everyone drives a car!”
“Is everyone someone’s name here?” I retorted. We both laugh. His frustration is palpable.
“Here’s a suggestion, how about, take a few days and think about our conversation, do some research on your competitors and your consumers needs. I will do some more research and in a week we can pick up from where we left off.”
It’s been four months now, the client went silent. This isn’t the first client I have engaged with who seems lost when it comes to marketing. The only way you can make the bottom line is to ensure your messaging is clear to the right people. About 7 out of every 10 clients I meet, some established with over 10 years in industry to start ups, don’t focus on their brands offering a solution to a certain demographic. They focus on sales; as a quick fix to offload o their product on any customer. And not marketing; where they need to focus on the customer experience and needs that the products will solve. With that kind of mind set, social media and other digital platforms are a bane to your existence as a company as opposed to an opportunity.
Here’s my advice to any individual or company seeking to build a digital presence, (this is not just social media this covers web apps and mobile apps etc), make sure you ASK and ANSWER two simple questions.
- Who needs my product? And why?
- Where are these people engaging digitally?
Once you answer those questions, step 3: Call or email Rose Odengo to guide and work with you to build your content.
I agree. Identifying who need your product and why is critical. The challenge is many businesses are interested in the bottom line and Not necessarily strategic thinking; which is work:)
That is very true, if we thought more strategic and less subsistence in our businesses, our growth prospects would be much better!