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Most companies today still use social media to play defense. Social customer-relationship-management implementations have been focused on discovering customer complaints after they happen, either via message boards or tracking conversations on public social networks such as Twitter and Facebook. These methods don’t do a good job of promoting your brand or engaging with the people who enjoy your product and who have the potential of becoming brand ambassadors.
It shouldn’t be this way. Playing defense is so 2010. It’s time for your company to jump into the fray and go on offense to help bring your brand to market, get your audience excited, and shape the conversation. Social CRM should be about offense—providing messages that are socially enabled and can go viral so as to raise product awareness, establish meaningful relationships with customers, and gain insight into how they feel about a marketing message, new product release, and so forth.
As small businesses gain a more evolved understanding of the efficacy of going on offense when it comes to utilizing social media, the strategy will be increasingly adopted and valued in 2011. Social media will prove to be the most cost-effective way to build brand awareness and obtain meaningful customer insight. After all, it’s a lot more fun to play offense than defense.
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