Fail to Plan Your Social Campaign - Plan to Fail!

FAIL (possible EPIC FAIL) by Rob Boudon

A key mistake made by brands when they first enter the social sphere is to forget that they’ll need a way to measure the tangible success of their efforts. Effectively brands leave themselves unable to measure the ROI of their social activity and as a result it can very easily become a wasted effort.

When you first engage through sites such as Facebook or Twitter it’s very easy to be fooled into thinking that a million online followers is an end to itself, but if you haven’t at the very least considered a future strategy for turning your new online friends (followers and fans) into *real* customers, it’s highly unlikely to happen on its own.

Just as with any other marketing campaign, clear objectives should be set right from the start that can be clearly measured and analysed in order to tell you exactly how successful your activities have been.

Thankfully the tools for monitoring and tracking the results of Social CRM campaigns do exist, so once your strategy is in place it should be easy to follow its success if you have the right skills or partners.

In some cases this success can be measured in real-time actual physical purchases. Working with Ubisoft in the UK for the launch of the game “Just Dance 2″, Neoco has developed an online home for fans of the existing Just Dance game to renew fan engagement, identify and encourage brand advocates, build up word of mouth and ultimately drive advance and launch sales of the new Just Dance 2 game.

This campaign has some typical elements of an effective Social CRM strategy:

1) Identify the target audience (in this case fans of the existing game) and engage them through social platforms like Facebook.

2) Create unique propositions with competitive elements to drive recruitment amongst their own networks – for Just Dance we developed “Fan of the Week” awards and a “Strike a Pose” app (offering regular weekly prizes to the most active followers).

3) Build on the community with outreach to non-traditional influencers, telling them about the new game in advance, drip-feeding them with information as the launch neared to keep them engaged and to help them to keep promoting the launch.

4) Encouraged fans to sign-up their friends and contacts by promising (and delivering) new content once membership milestones have been passed – building a critical mass.

5) Implemented trackable affiliate links through the Facebook group that enables sales from the campaign to be followed directly, in addition to other data capture that can be used for future (launch) marketing.

This strategy has the advantage of both targeting and supporting the leading supporters of the game and also driving trackable product sales.

This is a relatively simplified example, and not every product, brand or launch can or should follow this model. However, if you’ve gone into social media marketing without thinking about where you want to end up or what your end goals are, how are you going to know if you’ve succeeded?

Photo (cc) Rob Boudon.