Part of my daily routine is to check the latest stories on the social media scene while I partake of my only two cups of coffee per day. One of the stories that caught my eye today was by Stephanie Miller (no not the radio one – my wife is a big fan!), writer for Marketing Prof’s Daily Fix – “Creating Buzz – its the message AND the medium“. In this article she makes an enormously important point – one that we at Social-smart have been trying to make ever since we started – and that is that email is one of the most important of the social media tools. Here Stephanie is talking about a discussion she was involved in as part of a panel on a virtual event called “Creating an Environment for Viral Marketing Success,”
“What I loved about the discussion is that while it was all about viral and the buzz generated from social networks, the emphasis kept coming back to email marketing as the foundational element for most marketers. Certainly email powers the social networks – it’s the biggest traffic driver. But more importantly, for most of us, email is the most powerful link between your brand and the largest number of customers simply because that is where our customers spend time.”
Yes, yes, yes! And, especially in terms of both the sales and customer service elements of the engagement funnel, that is where most of your engagement is going to take place.
So often the various aspects of online marketing are discussed in total isolation, whether it be search, email, or social media. In fact, all these things are integral parts of any online marketing effort. It is interesting that I am beginning to see more articles appearing on the importance of integrating email marketing and social media. Marketing Vox for instance, reports that a “2009 Marketing Trends” study shows that “two-thirds of email marketers plan to integrate their email and social media campaigns in the second half of 2009”. Stephanie makes a great point in saying that you need to ‘Match the content to the medium’.
“Email is great for lifecycle marketing, promotional broadcasts and content newsletters. Facebook fan pages are great for surveys or building loyal fan bases. Twitter may be great for customer service as well as broadcast. Don’t just repost your blog everywhere – send content that is relevant to the channel so that you appeal to customers who consume information in different ways.”
But how to do it effectively and efficiently – that is the question.
“Despite an increased focus and growing investment in social media, there is still widespread confusion about how a social media strategy for email marketing should be implemented,”
the Marketing Vox article states, and also poses the question “who owns social media?”
Naturally, we would advocate Social-smart as a solution – we certainly haven’t come across another – and, believe me, we look closely. The way Social-smart does it is to integrate all the social media channels, monitoring and alert tools, email client, database, and analytical tools though one convenient online dashboard. There is even a built in WYSIWYG editor so that you can build HTML emails and newsletters, including clips from pre-set messaging menus, seamlessly all in the one location. What is significant about this system is that it allows multiple moderators to contribute to the overall marketing efforts through this one location. So, for instance, if you have several different people (or ‘owners’), possibly in different departments even, dealing with various aspects of social media and email or newsletter campaigns, all can tap into the same resources without having to duplicate effort. It also makes for much easier coordination and planning. You might like to register for our new demo video which will show you some of these functions in action – you will be amazed at how easily it all works together.
As the social network becomes more complex and fragmented, being able to integrate multiple channels of marketing effort easily and efficiently is going to become more and more important. We at Social-smart are constantly looking for new ways of providing that integration and efficiency and when we have them you can be sure that we will tell you about them here.