Italian Social Media Marketing
Italian Social Media Marketing – Reaching out to the Social Scene
Social Media Marketing has become the new approach to web marketing. Even if we want to talk SEO, someone would dare to say that, if you want your website to rank better, you have to put in place a balanced strategy including…
- good content;
- link popularity;
- and social signals.
Of course this approach is a little simplistic: many would object that there is no actual causation between social signals (which means how many likes, +1s, tweets… your pages have) and ranking. There is just a correlation: the pages that come higher in search results are more likely to get social signals.
But even if it is simplistic, the approach shows us the right way to promote your business: indeed if you have a business and you have a website representing your business, you have to promote it creating excellent content and share it in the Internet and in the social media landscape. This just makes sense and that’s what you have to do.
Unfortunately, in most of the cases, the ROI of Social Media Campaigns is not that evident: sometimes increasing the number of facebook likes doesn’t give you any more clients or money than what you used to have before.
Nevertheless, even when this correlation is not evident, it’s branding anyway! A shared content is a trustworthy content in the eyes of users and prospective clients/customers.
It takes a talented and insightful manager to make a social media campaign work properly, but it is well worth it. If there are the right conditions (innovative product/service, the right way to promote it) it is even possible to cause viral dynamics: word of mouth has always been the best way to get new customers and social media is the most similar dynamic to word of mouth in the internet. People trust their friends. They ask their friends about which plumber to hire, or the best preschools for their kids. The point is that your potential clients trust their friends more than they trust you. How to get into the word of mouth sphere online is also a matter of social media marketing.
If you want to explore geo-targeted social media marketing (for what concerns me, Italian Social Media Marketing) you have necesserely to rely on a native speaker that understands the subtle dynamics of social media and word of mouth.
Of course each social network has its own audience: and Italy has its own peculiarities. Here’s some facts:
- Monthly active Italian Internet users are between 28 and 38 millions (depending on how you read those statistics) but daily active users are around 15 millions!
- Some statistics dare to claim that 85% of Italian Internet users are in facebook!
- Google+, Twitter and Linkedin have their own audience in Italy even if they have just around 3 millions users.
- Youtube appears to have 17 millions Italians that visit at least once a month.
- Italians love mobile! 20 millions of Italian Internet users have a smartphone and use it to surf the net. 5 millions use Tablets. These trends are increasing.
- Demographics in Internet have changed, in Italy as per in the rest of the world: the majority of the users are between 25 and 44 years old; and users between 45 and 54 are more than users between 18-24.
Social media marketing is quite a bit different from most other forms of marketing. You can actually approach some social media marketing in 2 ways:
- one is similar to the classic display advertising (Facebook advertising, Linkedin Ads, Twitter Ads…) even if it has usually the great advantage to target specific demographic audience (a great example: women who have gotten engaged less than 6 months, aged between…)
- the other is all about conversation; you have to use your social media account (company page or whatever), give something valuable to your followers, listen to them, reply to their comments and questions and so on.
We should never forget that this is quite a revolution: something similar appears a few years ago when corporate blogs came in fashion. At the time it was said that companies came down to earth from being abstract entities users couldn’t talk with, to something closer to the level of their customers: users could talk with the corporate blog, leave comments, write complaints… Even back then many company were not willing to accept the challenge.
Now social media amplify this conversational dynamics: even worse if they complain about something that can become viral and cause great damage to a company. But it is always better have a presence in social network to manage complaints than to leave comments becoming viral without trying to lead them. And of course social media can become a great opportunity to talk, listen and understand one company’s audience and develop one company’s community of fans.
It takes a careful hand to make social media marketing work. The language, the mood and the styles of communication must be approrpiate: posts cannot sound like sales pitches or be too advertising centred. The posts have to have a personal nature to them and say something valuable. Items of interest that make good social network posts for businesses are: interesting news and developments in the industry, valuable information, events in the market, offers, contests…