Define your outcomes before you choose your social channels

March 2, 2016

The ongoing evolution of online distribution channels for content marketing appears to be endless. While the ‘traditional’ channels (FaceBook, Twitter etc) still hold dominance, the new-comers such as Periscope are showing promise in particular markets.

But before you sign-up to the latest craze in social media channels, take a step back and review your marketing objectives and strategy and ask yourself

“Is this just another distraction?”

By creating outcome-based marketing strategies you can develop cost effective holistic solutions based around a ‘content-first’ philosophy. So rather than shoe-horning content to fit the dazzling array of social distribution channels, you are tailoring your message to fit the channels that will best realise your desired outcomes.

Less is More

Should we use Periscope, or Instagram, or SnapChat? This common question has a common answer – “is your audience using it?”  But beyond the question of your audience, you must also question whether or not the particular channel will fulfil your objectives AND fit with your brand personality.

One social channel, strategically chosen to fit with your audience, your brand and meet your objectives is of far more value than spreading your content across multiple channels in the hope of a general objective such as ‘brand awareness’ or ‘increased influence’.

Focus Focus Focus

The more focused an objective is, the better your ability to create a strategy that can be tracked and measured for success.

Better brand awareness is an unquantifiable objective.  Increase engagement with product x by 30% on LinkedIn becomes an easily measurable objective by strategically creating content that is

1. Suited to the channel Channel selection is based on your product or service and your target audience, Instagram is great for product based businesses, LinkedIn is a boon for B2B service-based providers. 2. Tailored to the objective Refining your objective is the key to a successful strategy. The more specific your objective is the better you can refine the content to achieve that objective 3. Focused on a defined audience Everyone is no-one. Be very specific about who you want to target, what their needs are and how you meet those needs.

Create once and use multiple times

Strategically created marketing content is not a one-hit-or-miss-wonder. It will have enough depth to be repurposed across the right channels at the right time. For example, video can be edited in long form for YouTube, with shorter edits and stills images to broadcast across the ‘faster’ channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Maintain Brand Integrity

An effective marketing strategy will always carry your brand message not matter what format your content is, or what channels you are using to broadcast your content. Part of selecting the right channels to use to achieve your objectives lies in understanding how your audience both perceives your brand, and how they perceive the delivery channel.

The success of any marketing campaign relies heavily on the objectives set and the strategic deployment of the campaign material. Deep understanding of the target audience will help to focus the selection of distributions channels and ensure maximum impact for budget.

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