At our integrated marketing agency, we understand that when you drop a piece of data into the water, its ripples emanate outwards, far beyond the plane of your site and even related sites. It’s important to think of modern marketing this way, as something organic and vast in scope, so vast that it can’t be quantitated, completely.
In the words of mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal: “The least movement is of importance to all nature. The entire ocean is affected by a pebble.” It’s easy to view your social media impact too narrowly, so let’s explore ways of maximizing those ripples your pebble has created.
Hashtags and links move other parts of the ocean.
Think of everything in terms of waves. If you look at a sound wave, or a wave in the ocean, its initial motion is simply propagated down the medium, from one side to the other and back, where it’s possible.
Find out what’s trending using a search engine like Google, or an SM tool like Hootsuite, and work back to your Tweet or Facebook post by incorporating it. Chances are many relevant hashtags that already exist, so you don’t have to invent your own and hope it sticks. Link to articles from popular sites and mention popular public figures.
Your wave has effectively run into another object, like the pebble you dropped initially. Maybe it’s a bird floating in the social sea; move it, and it will move the market on the other side.
There is uncharted water out there, beyond the scope of your company and its SM profiles. When the data you’ve put out there, the hashtags, the links, and the other accounts you’ve referenced, reach that vague realm beyond, you will map it. And it gets there by reaching out to key satellite groups (i.e. popular hastags, links, profiles, etc.).
People and companies will respond to you because of their contact with these external hits, not with you directly, and you’ve increased your influence. Where there were two bridge, one from you to the satellite and one from the satellite to the end destination, there is now one bridge. And that one bridge is now the first bridge in the same process, with a different destination.
The network spirals outwards like a galaxy. As is the earth, and the universe, too, social media is a sphere, and you can reach all the way around it back to yourself with the proper links and hashtags.
Watch as this wave departs, fragments, and finds itself again on the other side:
Keep it real.
Use engagement questions in your posts, but use questions you would want to answer. Avoid vagueness. Instead of asking “How are you today?” to engage the public at the end of your blog, or as your tweet, focus your question, i.e. “What’s the best thing that happened to you today?”
You’ve asked a question with a concrete answer derived from an abstract feeling (concrete: the best thing, abstract: why was that thing good?), whereas the first question asks for an abstract answer derived from a concrete question (abstract: human emotions are complex, concrete: how you’re feeling right this minute is not). You want to get the public thinking abstractly by pinning them to a concrete solution because this way they are really thinking. The longer they are really thinking because of something you’ve asked them, the longer they are thinking because of you, and the longer they will later think about you.
A question with a quick response and little thought does not solidify you in the public eye. To reopen the ocean conversation: which will have a bigger ripple, a solid rock or a gaseous cloud?
Social media is an ocean, and the immediate connections you make are not representative of the far-reaching connections you are making by proxy. Be sure to make good primary connections, to popular sites, hashtags and key figures, and you will eventually make good secondary connections. The waves emanate outwards, collide with other waves, and reform, sometimes feeding back to you. So put quality out there, and quality will return to you. And when you are talking to the public and you want them to think, make them really think. Then they will remember you. True engagement is not binary, not yesses and nos, not good and bad. Don’t think 1 and 0, think ∞.
Memory is everything in integrated marketing, so plant a seed that grows healthily in your boat out there, weathering any storm at sea.