I grew up with technology and personally witnessed the evolution of social media.
In elementary school I played Oregon Trail on the colored iMac next to my friends. In middle school, I got my first cell phone and super embarrassing AOL screenname. In high school, I secretly played snake under my desk on my Nokia 3310. After school, I filled up the entire home PC with AIM messages- chatting away with the same people I had spent all day with. In college, I was finally able to get on Facebook thanks to my new ASU email address. I took a class specifically focused on social media and legit got graded on my tweets.
It became no surprise that with every job I held, social media was an integral part of what I did. It was second nature to me.
However, somewhere along the way I got lost in what it all meant. I forgot the foundation on where it all began.
I no longer saw my audience as people, I saw them as customers. I didn’t care about engagement, I cared about conversions.
My strategy was simple -- I targeted my audience, I blasted them with content, measured the analytics and calculated the ROI. I used high-converting colors, high-quality images and strategic CTAs. It was successful, it was efficient and it was completely ungratifying. I had it all wrong.
Through my successes, I learned my failures.
I learned the goal isn’t always to get the next customer or the most clicks. Rather, build a community and a brand that people are talking about. That they want to talk about. After all, isn’t that what social media is all about? Sharing, interacting and connecting?
Your customers… your audience… they are people. Not just a target.
Remember why people log on to their social platforms in the first place. Odds are, it is to catch up with friends and family. It is to watch a funny video. It is to be informed of current events. It is to feel connected with the world around them. It is to share their voice and their opinions.
Remember your customers are your fans. Treat them like a quick sale and they will be gone just as fast as they came.