Social branding optimization: Optimizing a brand’s value through social media

Even 2 years back social branding as a profession was so naïve that, nobody would give it a serious look, and a few social branding experts, who were into it, used to be considered as just a bunch of net freaks. Well how quickly times changed! All the brands (big, mid or small) are now flocking to these “net freaks” to design their online branding strategies and to enhance online user engagement, which has become so much important for a brand these days.
These days, no matter whatever the vertical of a business is, it should have an online social presence, because if you are not engaging your customers online, then someone else will eat your part of the cake and you could be left starving. So irrespective of the nature of the business, everyone is taking the social media branding plunge.
Now the question is if everyone is getting conscious about the social media presence of their brands, then why the success v failure ratio is so low? Different social branding experts have come out with different reasons and opinions; some social branding experts have put the blame upon faulty strategy where some social branding experts are blaming the selection of inefficient Internet marketing companies for the job. Yes, you cannot disagree with the validity of these two points, but I dug down a bit deeper to find out the exact root of the problem.
Let us put a line through the stack of the brands and divide them into two simple stacks.
Stack 1:
Business Size: Large
Business age: Old
Offline Presence: Strong
In this stack we have brands that are real big; they have gained this reputation well before even the dotcom boom. Brands like, Pepsi, Coca cola, Nike and all come in this stack. So well before the social media came into the picture, the people already knew about them. And all that they did was just propagating their offline presence to online, and strengthening their overall brand value through enhanced customer engagement. So for them creating an online buzz was relatively easy. For them it was the product that came first, then came the social media branding. It still worked for them, because they already had a strong “Offline social presence”.
Though it’s an entirely personal take, but still I DO NOT find the Pepsi logo good enough. Now had Pepsi been a new product trying to penetrate the market and popularize its logo through Social media branding, I don’t think it would have been successful in its effort. In that case people wouldn’t accept that DUMB logo and the overall product could have been a disaster. But since we have been seeing this logo for ages now, we somehow have got used to it and in turn started liking it as well.
Now what I’m trying so say here is, for an already famous product or service, designing a social branding is comparatively easy and this strategy cannot be copy-pasted for an unknown or fresh product or service.
Stack 2:
Business Size: Any
Business age: Zero
Offline Presence: Zero
The real challenge comes in while doing social branding for a fresh product or service. Nobody knows about your product or service, so your social branding strategy should be strong and convincing enough to draw public attention.
And for this, the most important feature that a social branding strategy should have is, flexibility. A non-flexible social branding strategy can never survive in the longer run. Because with an ever evolving market, your business plan should also pass through a continuous evolution curve to stay with the stream.
Now several times, I’ve seen that a product, in spite of having very strong features, do not see the dawn of success. There’s a difference a good product and a popular product. A popular product must have something good in it, but a good product does not necessarily have to be popular. And many products get caught in this thin line of separation.
So what I believe is, it’s always better to build a product keeping its social branding and other online marketing aspect in mind, rather than building a product first and then worrying about its social branding and online marketing. Some may raise a concern with this theory as; in some cases this approach might make a developer compromise with his creativity. But at the end of the day, if you are building a product for people, then you must also consider their thoughts as well while building the product.
Most of the people do not do this and thus even before the social branding or online marketing campaign for the product gets started; its black fate gets sealed.

44 comments:

Philip said...

Social media has really gotten so big that it is foolish not to take advantage of its power in marketing.
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jennie frost said...

A recent survey show that marketing professionals believe social media is an important aspect of their businesses.Most of the business engage in facebook,twitter,linkedin.Now Internet professional mostly work through social branding.It's a simple way to provide information to all.anyway thanks for the post.

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Monique Liva said...

Very informative post! I wish I can also learn Social Branding Optimization. Thanks for sharing.


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Making a positive impression is must. What Is Social bookmarking

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Pursuing product development with social branding in mind makes perfect sense. There are a lot of vendors in the market, each competing for a larger market share. It is therefore essential to develop a product that consumers will want to buy.

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Involving a business socially benefits a lot to the business owner and the business as well. Its a great method for promoting a brand (business). Great post!

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What most SMM experts miss in this trend is the engagement of their fans or followers. In social websites , it does not matter how many fans, likes or followers as what matters the most is their engagement to your posts.

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