In Nakuru County in the North Rift of Kenya lies Lanet Umoja Location that is demonstrating the power of Twitter. The area chief has taken to Twitter to inform and update his area residents on varied matters such as security, public baraza announcement, community health awareness campaigns and any other information deemed important to the villagers (even tweeting inspirational, uplifting messages).
Every social media update should ideally elicit a response which is the first step to conversion. These responses can be comments, retweets, likes, shares, link-backs, open rates, click-throughs, pins, stumbles, +1 etc. The actions can be used to gauge the engagement level of a brand’s content across various social sites over a period of time.
For a social media marketer (and brands), what can you learn about killer engagements from the tweeting chief?
@ChiefKariuki’s main reason for Twitter usage is to keep the peace in his locale, deter criminal elements and keep criminal activities to a minimal by promptly responding to SOS calls from the villagers. Guided by this simple plan, the chief has managed to realise his goal by constantly engaging his recipients.
His efforts are certainly paying off as criminal are also following him to stay abreast of his alerts. How about that for engagement!!
Understanding the reason for launching a social media program will help you stay focused, align your communication outputs to that goal and zero in on your target audience. When crating your social media strategy, it is imperative to include a content strategy, messaging and distributions strategy that will aim to drive the intended engagement. These brand engagements can include buying a book, booking an event, download, calling for quote, booking a consultation etc.
Tools of trade
It is without a doubt a majority of the villagers have feature phones. The good chief kept this in mind and chose an appropriate tool to relay his messages. The chief uses third party mobile applications Twitter via text as provided by mobile phone companies. There is usually no cost incurred by the villagers upon receiving these messages.
Once you have understood and zeroed in on your target audience, the choice of tools (networks) and medium to use should be carefully picked for an engaging return on investment.
Does your product require visuals? Then guide your customers to Pinterest. Product demo? How about a Youtube channel. Are your customers busy professionals? Perhaps email marketing would work best for them. Young, trendy youth with disposable income? Maybe a gaming app. The choice of tools is endless…
It is clear that the chief understands his villagers and has taken on a messaging and distribution strategy that effectively engages the recipients to (re)act in the intended way.
The chief keeps the lines of communication open by constantly updating the villagers as he is on call 24/7.
For your brand to thrive and reap the benefits of social media marketing, ditch the monologue associated with traditional marketing. As indicated in the name, ‘social’ connotes sharing, conversations and dialogue. Today’s consumers respond positively to open, social brands that connect with them emotionally.
Remember, before launching your social media program, assign a living, dedicated person (not automated humanoids) to guide your interactions with your audience and humanize your brand. As rule, do not ignore or delete negative reactions and comment as these presents a chance to present your brand in a favourable light.
Following the chief’s stream one can see that he doesn’t abandon his subjects after SOS calls. After his crime fighting tactics have been put in place, the chief updates the villagers on the progress of stolen cattle, recoveries of stolen properties et cetera. This has earned the chief trust from the villagers.
“The essential difference between emotion and reason is that emotion leads to action while reason leads to conclusions.” Donald Calne, Neurologist, University of British Columbia
The secret sauce to social media engagements is appealing to the emotions of your readers. To extend the life of your brand on social media and build an army of brand ambassadors, seek to continuously engage with your customers with relevant social media updates that will naturally elicit the expected engagement. Ultimately, this will earn your brand trust and credibility, leading to meaningful engagement which is the first step to conversion.
What are your lessons from the tweeting chief?