Big Brands need to reach millions and millions of people today. And again tomorrow. And next week. They need to show an immediate impact on their sales and revenue streams where the baseline is hundreds of millions of dollars if not billions. They often have thousands if not tens of thousands of customer calls a day. I proved last September how customers of big brands are not being reached via Social Media. None of this can be achieved completely via Social Media.
So what can they do via Social in order to impact their business?
1] Listening - all those Tweets for your brand and your competitors, all those Facebook posts give you insight for free (minus the cost of listening tools).
2] Customer Service - while you will never be able to handle all your customer service via Social Media you can handle some. And guess what? While 99.9999% never want to talk to your brand on social often if at all...we surely want you to have a Twitter Account or Facebook Page for quick complaints and you had better respond.
My friend Christopher Baccus at ATT says they handle about 2% of the volume for customer service via Facebook. You might feel this is insignificant but if you pay the same workers who handle inbound 800 calls this saves a ton of money on an 800 line!
3] Marketing - You will never be moving the sales needle via Social Media Marketing for a big company. Get over it. Anyone who says you will is a big fat liar. But you can add to your sales. Even if it winds up just 1/2 a percent for a billion dollar company that is $50mil dollars not bad?
It's fun to do some campaigns via Social but careful about this. Facebook owns all your data. Every page post, every bit of content you run on your page they own. Who says Facebook isn't selling the Pepsi Page insights to Coca Cola and vice versa? In fact don't you expect that considering their business model is exploitation? Your competitor with deep pockets can mine all this data just like you. What about hosting an E-Commerce Store? Again Facebook owns and sees all that data do you really want them sharing with your competitor who bought what? In fact the Miami Heat had such a store. It was not an E-Commerce play vs an Impulse play. Well they took it down. Wonder why. Lack of sales? Mistrust of the platform?
How do you market to people via Social Media yet keep your cherished customer data and conversations? Easy...use Social Media to funnel customers to your proprietary website. Instead of funneling people to Facebook for an APP that is hosted on Facebook....have the APP funnel people to your tricked out campaign website hosted by you the Brand. Buy Facebook ads that bring people to your website. Post the links on the Twitter.
View Facebook no differently than Yahoo for marketing. All it is, is a big display ad website of people spending time there. You want to reach a lot of people. You must use traditional and digital Advertising/Marketing in conjunction with Social Media to really make Social Media Marketing work for you.