If your company is considering social media as a platform to connect with you market, you should take some time to examine the opportunity from your customers’ perspective.
It may seem natural to categorize your readers as either customers or prospects but in many cases your brand may mean something more based on a number of factors or circumstances.
Q: In Social Media, do you only follow brands you use?
A: I follow brands that are interesting to me at some given time for a variety of reasons, whether I have purchased from them or not. I’m not afraid to unfollow brands that no longer provide value to me and/or those that have unapealling social media habits. In fact, your question just prompted me to unLike nearly 30 Facebook Pages and unFollow a couple dozen Twitter users.
Some brand categories I follow:
1) Brands that have products or services that I use, like or want to learn more about, such as Aviiq. Usually, if I just purchased from them I’m either already following them or just started following because I’m interested in what value they offer, specifically related to their product.
2) Brands I’m interested in based on my hobbies, sports and general interests, such as InsideLacrosse. I may never buy from them and, in fact, they may not even have something to sell. The information they share provides a healthy dose of distraction that might otherwise take much longer to consume with other forms of media.
3) Brands that are key influencers, trendsetters, and doing exciting things regardless of their industry, such as Zappos. These are brands I like to learn from because of their business sense and go-to-market strategies. They may be in completely different industries but because they are successful I may be interested and follow them … usually for a shorter period of time.
4) People as Brands – those I find interesting, knowledgable, influential, important to my success, market leaders, etc. Social media has facilitated the rise of some very influential branded individuals, such as Eric Qualman. I follow them not only because I may purchase their products, but also to study their technique and learn from them on an ongoing basis.