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Creative Social Media Gives Competitive Advantage
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Mobile use of social media is going through the “hockey stick” growth pattern now and businesses which are taking advantage of it are profiting, even in this economy.  A recent study by LEK Consulting talked about an inside secret called “flash deals,” which has nothing to do with Adobe Flash, the popular video format.  However, it holds a lot of potential for your business – if you take advantage of it.

Just last week I saw a deal for $1.00 off at FroYo and swung by for some strawberry and mint. I wasn’t even really in the mood for frozen yogurt, but saw the posting and realized that the deal would be over in two hours, so I went for it. By the time I got there, I was fully in the mood for it, having thought about all the delicious add-ons during my 3-minute drive.

By definition, mobile users are on the go, and could be near your location or on the opposite side of town at any given moment – you just don’t know until you try. The cashier at FroYo seemed disappointed that I was the first person to stop in and use the twitter deal since they tweeted it several hours prior, but I think the disappointment was misplaced.

They made a sale because of that tweet. $6 was in the register that wasn’t before and it cost them nothing but a small discount.  Beyond that, they gave themselves some content for their own social media feed.

On top of that they earned my loyalty as a customer; I still see their occasional specials when I’m far away and can’t make it, which helps keep their establishment near top-of-mind for me when I’m thinking frozen treats. That kind of consumer recall is very difficult to track — but absolutely priceless.

Think of the value inherent in being Pizza Hut vs Joe’s Pizza. Whenever someone says they want pizza and the group starts listing off places they could go, Pizza Hut, Papa Johns, Domino’s will likely make the list because of recall. If your name isn’t near top of mind, you aren’t in that list and no matter how great your pies are, you were never considered. Top of mind awareness (TOMA) is critical for retaining customers and building on top of your social media efforts.

Remember, getting people to follow/like/friend you in social media is just step one. Using social media to keep yourself top-of-mind is step two, and if you can translate that to a direct, trackable sale don’t get disheartened because you only got one sale you could track. My recall of FroYo led to at least one more sale after that, and will likely lead to more in the future.

How do you see social media being used to build business loyalty?  What practices have caught your attention?  We’d love to hear your insights.  Please leave your comments in the space below.

David EggerLead Marketing Manager, IRU Mobility Programs, AT&T
David has worked in several areas at AT&T: sales, education, and now marketing. As a forward-thinking, self-described nerd, David has a keen awareness of emerging technologies and mobile applications. He is a regular blogger on AT&T’s Networking Exchange blog.
www.networkingexchangeblog.att.com | Facebook | @DavidEgger | More from David

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Discussion (2) Comment

  1. What a great article. It is very clear right now that most businesses were embracing technology and it’s their one way of their creative competitive advantage. It is very informative and knowledgeable. Thanks for sharing.


  2. Denise FeketeVisitor

    Excellent points David! Those companies with forward thinking strategies will rise to the top leaving other more conservative corporations and small businesses well behind this innovative approach. Ultimately loosing out on easy revenue through good communication strategies! I’ve seen a reluctance within corporations to try new creative, innovative ideas! I’m looking for one that will satiate my need for creativity and challenge me to deliver!

    Regards,
    Denise Fekete

 

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