Large social networks (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.) are great for expanding your network and to help grow your community, but they fail miserably at 3 things. Purpose. Focus. Value. Go ahead and ask 5 of your friends/colleagues what the purpose of say Facebook is and I bet you will get 5 different answers. Let’s dive in deeper…
Think about all of the Facebook pages you’ve ever “Liked”. How much time do you spent on those pages engaging with that company? Really. I read a very good article on Facebook recently on Social Media Today that referenced several statistics regarding how Facebook page reach has declined to something around 1-2%. So that 1,000 likes really means about 10-20 people even seeing your posts, let alone engage with them. For B to B businesses, this makes your job even harder. Let’s face it, without purpose, focus or value, your chances of really building a loyal community that can help you achieve your mission is pretty dismal.
One last point on I will make on this topic is what does your presence on large social networks really say about your organization? Are you just conforming to the “social norm”? Are you just like everyone else? Of course not. There is something unique about you. There is a value you bring that no one else does. How you demonstrate that value is everything. Perception is reality.
When you create a purpose-drive community you demonstrate your unique value to the world. You open up the opportunity for your community (e.g. members, stakeholders, partners, etc.) to help you achieve your mission. That’s the reason why I created Social HubSite. I wanted to provide an easy way for any organization to create and run a digital community that is integrative and keeps up with the way people expect to communicate (mobile, text, etc.) that allows them to put their name on it. To control the community.
We created Phase 2 Connect (private company community) using Social HubSite to not only make it easier for everyone in and around our company to communicate, but also to show the people we work with the true purpose of our organization. Think of it as internal marketing. Just having the name and logo with Phase 2 Connect speaks volumes to the people that work with us. It makes them feel connected to something.
What do you think your staff would say if you launched a digital community specifically for them? How would you make them feel?
What do you think your customers would say about a digital community specifically for them? How would you make them feel?
What do you think your referral sources and partners would say about a digital community specifically for them? How would you make them feel?
We aren’t talking about technology here. Yes, Social HubSite is integrative and has a lot of great features, but who cares! If it doesn’t satisfy human emotions, nobody will even take the time to participate. They won’t see the value.
As I see it, if you want to win in the world of social and digital media, you need to be different. Don’t just follow what everybody else is doing. Identify your community, create a place just for them and bring them value. It’s what separates you from the rest. It empowers people to help you without cost. It’s your best advertising vehicle. It’s what makes you who you really are. It makes your vision a reality.