The criteria might surprise you. We find that the most dangerous clients are those who try to control the internet. Yes. You read that correctly. Those who try to control the internet. If you are guilty, it’s understandable. A brand can get crushed out there without a plan. The thing is, you can’t have it both ways—your brand can’t reap the social benefits of the web without the inherent risks.
Today, a brand must be a part of the online real-time fabric to be relevant. But as a brand manager there are many concerns: Poor performance and slow momentum builds. Challenging content generation. Rogue consumers. Swift response times. Plus, online and social channels have become a huge arm for customer service. For example, 78% of people who complain to a brand via Twitter expect a response within an hour. 1 Then there are all the unmanageable review sites. Also, many industries including healthcare, government and financial clients face stringent rules and regulations.
Consumers as Part of your Marketing Team
Holding the reins a little more loosely can mean a big win. User generated content is valued most highly by other users and can provide brand advocates a platform. The Meeker Report , released May 31st of this year, addresses brands that use consumer generated content. More than 60% of the content on Instagram for Red Bull and BMW is user generated. Qatar Airways has almost 80% UGC. Now that’s gutsy in a world where a new airline horror video seems to pop up every week.
User generated content can be risky, but also very effective, as UGC can generate 6.9 times higher engagement than brand generated content on Facebook, per Mavrck, 2/17 as cited in the Meeker Report2.
It’s All About a Plan
Although there’s a lot to consider when navigating your brand’s online social presence, a variety of tools make online and social properties measurable and trackable. ROI is a little more complicated, but that too can be tracked through engagement and conversion.
But this is not a free or easy endeavor. The monitoring, response and insight adjustments require expertise and time. Both the brand team and the client must place value on consumer brand engagement. It may seem intimidating at first, but the reward outweighs the risk. A good agency partner can help make online brand interaction engaging, vibrant and financially rewarding.
1Source: Lithium. lithium.com/company/news-room/press-releases/2013/consumers-will-punish-brands-that-fail-to-respond-on-twitter-quickly.