2012 / 11 May

Are You Flexible Enough To Do Social Media Marketing?

Next to taxes and death, change is the only thing in this world that is certain.  As the tides of the internet push and pull and the whims of social media community members ebb and flow, so does the popularity, web site traffic, interest and buzz around tools, applications and sites in social media.  Even with all your research, six months down the line, the social media marketing tactic that you identified as part of your strategy could be in serious decline and not performing.

On the other hand, the marketing tactic could be even more of a success than you imagined.  The question then comes to any company – “Are You Flexible Enough in Your Social Media Marketing Strategy to Change & Adapt to Those Conditions?

Can You Plan to Be Nimble and Integrate Your Marketing Strategies?

Can You Change Your Strategies?Some companies have internal politics that make it nearly impossible to be nimble enough to quickly adapt to the changes that happen in social media.  There are budget constraints, signatures that need to be obtained or a bunch of other hoops that a social media marketing team must go through in order to change parts of their strategies on the fly.  This is where mid-sized to small-sized businesses have an advantage to super big corporations, a lot of times it’s a quick phone call or email to get that change done, not a check list of permissions that need to be obtained.

The key for these bigger corporations to be able to be flexible is to plan in flexibility if they can and to also educate senior management about the entire social media environment.  If they understand that you are monitoring and measuring closely and need to be able to stop or invest more into something within a short time frame and have the data to back that up, they may be more willing to allow for more flexibility and less rigid processes for your strategy.

Don’t Be Afraid to Stop

When something isn’t working, why would you want to keep doing it?  It’s a lot like beating your head against a brick wall, you’re not going to move the wall, you’re only going to get a bruised forehead & a headache.  If you have the data to tell you that the tactic you are implementing isn’t meeting the success measurements or helping you to attain the goals you set in place, you need to be nimble enough to either change the approach slightly or stop it all together and even replace it with putting more investments and resources into other tactics that are hitting their success metrics.

Can You Stop if Something Isn't Working?Continuing to deploy and invest in social media marketing tactics that aren’t working just because they are cool or you like them a lot and feel comfortable in that community, is likely only prolonging the failure and wasting your valuable resources.  You’ll get more out of being nimble and flexible enough to adapt and invest in places that are garnering your more engagement and success than in places that you merely feel comfortable with but aren’t producing for you.  This is why its important to diversify your strategy with a few marketing tactics and not to fall in love with one or two particular sites, tools or tactics.

Be Ready to Invest in What’s Working

Sometimes a particular marketing tactic can work a lot better than what you had even expected.  Those are the nice kind of surprises that marketers like to experience.  If something does take off and works like gangbusters in your strategy are you prepared to invest more time, resources and money to further enhance the success of what’s working so well?  Do you also readjust your goals, the amounts invested and time you are allowing the program to run?

Invest in Your Own ResourcesBeing able to plan into your strategy the ability to change rather quickly is important for the success of your plan.  It’s especially important to be able to take advantage of things that are working better than expected, or if there’s a new opportunity with a feature or a tool.  Sometimes implementing new tools can make your team even more efficient and free up some time and resources, so can you then dedicate that newly freed up time and resources into current tactics or implement new ones?  These are things that your team should be looking at when you are first planning your strategy.

At the end of the day if you can plan in some “padding” into your strategy that will allow you to be flexible you’ll be better able to adapt to the every changing social media marketing world.  If you educate your C-Suite about the way social media can change but show them you have the data to back up the reason for changes, you’ll end up being more nimble and better able to adapt and find a lot more success in your future

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