Obviously, this is not another big data blog post!

Okay, it is about data but not how to get it but why you need it.

First, some context, I argue that it is more important than anything else to make sure the authenticity of your company comes across to the twenty-somethings.  With that in mind and companies like Burt’s Bees and Levi’s as your guide, read on!

Your social feed is full of cat or dog videos and political messages, so now what do you think gets ignored? Your sales pitch! It is hard to make an old fashion sales pitch in that context.  It appears out of place. In fact, with the new data issues and privacy issues that have come to light on Facebook, brands don’t stand a chance of getting in front of their audience. But you can still make it work for your brand. It just takes the best story told by you about what your brand is and also targeted to the right audience.

Social media’s tone and consumer-driven content make social content seem like a dud for driving revenue, but I believe it’s the best place to enforce the authority of your brand’s message.

To establish consumers’ confidence in your brand, a prospect has to feel that what they are buying will perform as promised, and then your sales funnel has to have no friction. But first, they need to trust your brand!

Doing all that… Shouldn’t you also find out where your consumers are living online and hanging out in the real world? Building this placement or what I call a sound social strategy is where the data comes in handy.

Four points to consider to establish an authentic presence in your message.

Where:  Find out where your audiences are living online and off to make sure you’re telling your story in the right channels.  The demographics of your different segments should help you find their favorite social platform and real-world routines.

Each platform or place has a tone of voice you need to use.  Is it pictures, or is it video, and is the tone advice versus just showing results?  Is it sponsorship or supporting a cause? Is a lifestyle image and giving them a great experience just like while they experience your company?

What to say: Social media is a perfect place for helping remove any doubt that might hinder the sales conversions later.  Be patient and realize that the platform drives the context. You’re not making the sale here but setting a preference for a frictionless sale for later. Here is your Why you do what you do and the “better than the competition” story you tell goes.  The story sets expectations and has to be true. It is also about making the best of what a platform that rewards good brands, transparent brands, or, as I said before, the authentic presence of the true self of the brand happens. Does that sound too trendy? Well, just call it the reason for the companies existence. And know that the post was written in 2015 and only slightly updated for 2020! So things are relevant because they are the bedrock of how consumers and businesses produce real relationships online.

 Example from “How Levi’s Built the Most Authentic Clothing Brand.”

Conversion: the buying process has to be easy, or the trust goes right out the window! The buying experience cannot have any hidden or extra effort, risk, or costs. But it won’t because you already made sure of that in all the stories you’ve told. You do have to worry about the way it loads and if the technology supports the effort, but that’s almost not as important as the attitude the buyer has when they start the journey. I’ve seen bad experiences produce results because the company was so well-liked…

Back to the beginning: what they’re friends say about the decision to buy your product is enormous.  If your buyers share their purchase experience with friends, you’re a trusted brand.  Making sure you’re asking to be shared, shows confidence in that interaction.  The story gets told.

So what about the data? The data is always what is turning the wheels.

Starting with the data, determine the who, what, where, and why our audience segments message performs and use the learnings to guide optimization of message and platform use.

Reputation, buying experience, knowing your customer’s price sensitivity, transparency, and reviews of the product are all places that have to display your brand’s integrity. Data can tell you what you need to know about each of those items.

Great example: It used to be that only specific audiences were on mobile. So when you looked at google analytics, you could look at the % split between mobile and desktop or tablets and ad the age of each of those and see that you had to design a site for the younger audience on mobile-first. Today, that’s all changed, now you need to create your experience like a mobile app even if it’s not an app.

 

I believe that if you strive for a data-driven content strategy, social becomes the best tool you can add to your sales toolbox.

So you know your audience, and you know where they are living online, and you have content to create, but what is the data saying that might well produce the content? Look at what has been the posts that have the most engagement.

Look at how many bookmarks, saves, likes, shares, and comments you’ve received on any post. Is it a video about the outcome after the product has been used, or is it product benefits? Which one drove more conversions, and what is the lifetime value of the conversions it drove?  Now take the best conversions with the highest lifetime value and look at that content and do more of that.

But not only that, know what your audience likes besides you. Get a look at what they’re interests are and how much they spend doing whatever it is they do. What are they’re top priorities, and so on?

Here is an excellent example of content and how to be authentic in your founding story. This resonates with the audience that most likely to use the natural product. Founding story

How about managing your content to optimize KPIs and helps you decide how to create the best experience in social for your prospects?

Empathy is the new customer service strategy here, and the data enables it.