The holiday season can be a double-edged sword for marketers as we start to see purchase-ready consumers eager to buy their gifts for loved ones. Understandably, marketers are all too eager to try to get consumers to spend their money with their brands.
After all, that’s what marketers do. We connect with consumers and work to persuade them to purchase products from us. However, the social media space requires marketers to rethink their instincts and tread carefully.
Respect the Relationship.
Social media, unlike any other platform, is where we can easily communicate one-on-one with our customers. We spend time and effort connecting with people, responding to queries and creating compelling content that consumers not only want to consume but also share with others.
Like any relationship, the time and effort put in social media throughout the year is an investment. It’s a give and take.
The challenge for marketers is respecting those relationships all the time, particularly during the holidays when driving the sale can take priority over nurturing the relationships with customers.
Marketers can’t be selfish. “Buy, buy, buy!” and “Sale, sale, sale!” have a time and place in brands’ social media efforts, but they should be communicated with a balance of valuable content.
Social media is the consumer’s turf. We need to be respectful of that and make sure that what we’re doing is making our relationships with them stronger.
Deliver Value. Always.
It’s rare to find a brand that isn’t communicating in one way or another using social media, which means it’s more important than ever to be more than a distraction. We can’t get lazy. Value must always be delivered, whether it’s providing online customer service, creating great content that consumers enjoy or curating and sharing relevant content that’s already out there.
Consumers will see efforts that appear too promotional, bombard them with irrelevant information and feel too pushy and punish marketers for them. Maybe they’ll unsubscribe/unfollow/unlike, or maybe they’ll do something more damaging such as spread negative word of mouth.
Social media’s just different. Consumers look for entertainment and interactivity when engaging with social platforms. Sales should be communicated through these channels but with balance. The question that should always be in the back of a marketers mind all the time, especially during the holidays, is “Are we delivering value or just trying to get the sale?”