Category Archives: Social Media

Can social media level the playing field?

I came across a brilliant example of how  a focused social media strategy really can create results that, in the past,  only an enormous marketing budget could have hoped to achieve.

The ‘product’ in question is football…women’s football to be precise. Women’s football, though supported by the FA to some degree, suffers from a lack of recognition despite the numbers of girls and women now involved in the sport. With a modest marketing budget, teams in the Women’s Super League (WSL), are turning to social media to develop their fan base.

The use of Twitter has been a key part of their strategy with each team in the League nominating an ambassador who engages with fans on a regular basis. Team members display their Twitter account name on their kit to further promote engagement.

The results to date have been encouraging, with social media channels attracting around 80,000 followers. The Fifa Women’s World Cup in July 2011 reportedly attracted over 7,000 tweets per second at its peak; making it one of the most tweeted about events. The real measure of success, attendance of WSL matches, is said to be up by 600%. What other media can boast that kind of success on a relatively low-budget?

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I’ve started so I’ll finish

I have been undertaking some research on behalf of a client this week and am amazed by the number of websites showing out of date blogs. The most recent blog posts on about 60% of the sites I researched were over 3 months old.

I know that there are no definitive ‘rules’ on blogging frequency but I’ve never heard anyone advocate blogging once a quarter!

What did this make me feel about the companies I was researching? They were lazy, busy or just plain disorganised? It certainly didn’t make me want to rush out and do business with them.

Social media seems like an easy marketing option, especially for small businesses, not least because there is little direct cost involved. This is not a good enough reason to set up a Facebook page, sign up for a Twitter account or start a blog though. Social media, like any other marketing activity, needs to be built into your marketing plan. It’s not a quick fix and takes time and effort.

If you want to include social media into your marketing mix it is essential that you understand why, how and when you will use it;  including how it will integrate with your other marketing activity. Don’t be too ambitious, we all have limited time, and plan for contingencies such as busy work periods. Be realistic about what you can achieve and enlist help if you need to. Above all plan your activity and finish what you have started.