There is a common misconception that social media only belongs to the realm of major consumer products and services. Many business owners don’t see the benefits of getting social online or are stumped at how to get their campaigns off the ground.
What if I have a boring product/service?
That ‘What if‘ is the mindset that will hold your business back from achieving an effective social presence. Identifying ways to socially engage with your “boring” business offering requires out of the box thinking – what it doesn’t require are intensive resources. Often ideas posed by family or friends can shed new light on how people outside your industry view your product/service.
A great example of innovative thinking is blender company Blendtec Home’s video campaign, “Will it Blend?”. Most people would lump kitchen appliances in the “boring” category of products, but Blendtec’s edgy videos became a viral hit. Check out one of the many Will It Blend? videos below.
Blendtec’s social success came from looking at what its product could do, and turning that into entertainment. A video series about trying to destroy non-food items in a blender proved to be an extremely engaging concept that earned Blendtec a huge amount of brand recognition and discussion. The videos not only showcase the power of Blendtec’s products – if its blenders can pulverise an iPhone, it’s a safe bet they can turn out a good frozen berry smoothie – they’re funny, and make the brand more likable than its competitors.
Choose the Right Platform
Understand that not all social platforms will be the right fit for your business. While video can be a powerful promotional medium, as seen above, online communication extends beyond common social networks like YouTube and Facebook. You may be able to make more of an impact by exploring wikis, forums, and blogs. With the abundance of avenues to choose from, every niche has its place online. Whether you sell pens or mining machinery, there are people in your industry, as well as consumers, who are talking about you. Find out where, set up an account and join in on the conversation.
PR Specialist Catriona Pollard recently highlighted the social potential of forums in her blog post: “Why online forums should be considered.”
As with all social campaigns, big or small, keeping an online presence requires dedication. This doesn’t have to be time consuming – many social platforms have notification settings in place to alert you about any online interactions with your brand’s account.
Start Your Research
One of the easiest ways to find where people are talking about you is by using search engines. Google have made this easy with Google Alerts, a great way to constantly research without encroaching on your valuable time. Even if this isn’t something you intend on starting in the near future, entering the research phase can help spur ideas on what your customers want from you, and their ideas on how you can improve your products/services.
There are many examples of small and non-traditional businesses increasing their social presence. Feel free to share your stories if you’ve been successful too!