Social Media marketing is in all marketing conversations now.. in it’s simplest and probably the most common form people look at it as a facebook like and twitter links on the site. But Social marketing is much deeper (an tons to be discovered still). Here is a thought process:
It really has 2 parts:
b) Participation ( I am consciously not calling this marketing)
Relationship is a long term component, this is where you are building your brand and an association with very specific people who start to trust you, like you (as an individual/company/brand). Core of the relationship building are being personal – if you show someone that they or their views are important that starts to form a bond.
I have seen companies force this by doing a give away if someone becomes a fan on fb and so on. It’s effective in someways as more number of fans builds perception for the others but in many ways this is fooling oneself also. As those are not great relationships, just loose associations.
Participation becomes the vehicle to building relationships. This can be responding to question or comment from someone, posting useful information, initiating an important conversations.. essentially it’s about giving.
And that word “giving” is the core of this I think.. most of the time people approach it from a “taking” perspective but while that can be a goal, it is a result of giving.. almost becomes philosophical and a “Karma” theory.
more tactical thoughts to come … hopefully soon.