Engage or Die: A Social Media Manifesto

Mar 28, 2011

Social media is about sociology and less about technology.

It’s a mash-up of new and traditional media that spans across advertising, PR, customer service, marketing communications, sales, and community relations.

Technology is not strategy.
Technology has provided the ability for brand conversations to evolve from monolog to dialog.

Social Media is about conversations.
The Internet is dynamic, interactive, participatory, and collaborative.
The best communicators start as the best listeners.
Listening is marketing. Participation is marketing. Comments and Likes are marketing.
YOU (or your company) are a BRAND.
Everything you do or say internally and externally should reflect your brand values.
Be there, and be active in the public square.
Determine where your customers participate, listen, read, etc., and speak with them on their terms. Participate in comments —as a contributor and not a marketer. Remember, it's all out in the open.
Find out who your influencers are and engage them directly.
Madison Avenue and The New York Times may still be the influencers for boards of directors, but for the social media generation, the idea of the expert has shifted dramatically from authority toward peers. Learn who the key influencers are for your  brand and your industry, and get them involved in what you’re doing.

Curate relevant social media.
·      Use Twitter and Facebook and other relevant online networks to stay abreast of what other people are saying about your brand and business, and CURATE that information into your communications. Don’t just collect followers: use Twitter and Facebook to develop and cultivate partnerships, through likes, favorites, comments, promotions, contests, and other engagements focused on audience participation.
·      Blog regularly, not only about your brand, but interesting industry news as well. This does not always have to be original content. The goal is to keep the conversation going.
·      Expand the company blog to support multiple spokespersons
·      Enlist relevant bloggers your central PR strategy.
·      Create videos, screencasts, and demos and upload to YouTube, Vimeo, DailyMotion, and other video sharing sites.
·      Webcast / live stream relevant videos.
·      Podcast and/or host a video blog.
·      Add a blogroll that links to other relevant sites and ensure that each post trackbacks to other resources and references to increase visibility.
Link. Link. Link. Direct traffic to your site.
·      Send trackbacks to other blogs, where related posts are linked for readers to discover.
·      Leave thoughtful, value-added comments in response to posts on other blogs with your URL.
·      Engage with and include relevant topical aggregators.
Heighten your profile.
·      Create company profiles and share relevant content on every important social networks – and manage your presence in each one.
·      Set up del.icio.us and other social bookmarking profiles for corporate bookmarks, industry trends, competition, and press/blogger coverage.
·      Create special LinkedIn profiles for company executives.
·      Create a blog profile in Bloglines to reach dedicated users.
·      Create an account and Digg all relevant stories.
·      Build brand and campaign-specific profiles (where appropriate) on Facebook, Myspace, etc.
·      Experiment with social and SEO releases and create new distribution methods to get them in front of customers.
·      Experiment with virtual worlds and create a presence. There’s a lot more going on there than you might think, and it’s social!
Track and measure your effectiveness.
Analyze Web statistics to measure traffic and referring sources and grade your website, Facebook page, Twitter feed, etc.
Advice for Nubes.
·      Experiment with social media as a person before jumping in as a company spokesperson.
·      Talk to the marketing team, discuss the options, and divide and conquer. Also talk to young people.
·      Assign a community manager or multiple managers and start commenting, reading, writing, sharing, and participating.
Don’t pay too much for more than you need.
Most people are paying too much for website upgrades and getting either more than they need, or not the right things. Remember web hosting, web programming, and web design are three different things. Make sure you know what you want before you hire anyone, and check out Vworker. At the very least, you want to make sure you have a website that is easy to upgrade and that any new work includes training and documentation on maintenance. The basic circa 2011 website should include video or audio, sharing links or widgets, a web-mail sign up field, blog, calendar, and donation function.
[This manifesto was adapted freely from Brian Solis with additions by NPAC website guest curator Brian McCormick.]
You can watch Brian Solis' video series, REVOLUTION, on YouTube.

Tags: social media, manifesto, technology, strategy

Sub Categories

TECHNOLOGY: Social Media
TECHNOLOGY: Video Presentations
TECHNOLOGY: Customer Relations Management (CRM)