Excellent advice for using social media to promote and defend your business
How people talk about and recommend you is the most important key to your success in this new world of doing social business, according to Paul Rand in his book Highly Recommended: Harnessing the Power of Word of Mouth and Social Media to Build Your Brand and Your Business. However, understanding why and how consumers talk about and recommend a product is a new concept to the marketing world, requiring a very different skill set than having a one-way conversation.
The word-of-mouth reputation of a business has always been important to future success. However, in the past recommendations and complaints have spread in a relatively restrained manner through private conversations between families, friends and acquaintances. Now positive or negative comments can spread much more rapidly and to a much greater extent, thanks to the multiplying effect of social media. This is both an opportunity and a threat for all businesses.
How do you go about maximising the opportunities provided by social media, while at the same time minimising the threats? The author suggests that your social media engagement strategy should have the following elements:
- Know: Conducting the research to discover how and where people are talking about your business and your competitors’ businesses
- Plan: Creating a shareable story for your business and a strategy for promoting that story
- Identify: Locating people who can influence buying decisions relevant to your business
- Activate: Creating engaging experiences and compelling content
- Protect: Using appropriate strategies to minimise the negative effect of different types of detractors
At the end of chapter 2, the author says that his aim is for readers to recommend his book in the following terms:
- The book was very readable and helped me understand what it means to have an how to achieve a highly recommended business. It’s one of the best business books I’ve read.
Now that I have reached the end of the book, I have no hesitation in agreeing. It was very readable, very helpful and very recommendable.