If you’re like a lot of companies, you might be doing some cool things on Facebook. Maybe you’re also listening, responding and engaging with people on Twitter. Maybe you also have a Flickr account for pictures and have some videos on YouTube.
But how are you tying all these things together to leverage them and show people what you’re doing?
One way is to include logos/links to your social profiles on your website, blog and email campaigns. But this isn’t necessarily the most effective thing to do. On your website, you’re generally trying to get people to take a specific action/s, such as making a purchase, downloading a whitepaper, or filling out a form to request more information. If you send people away from your site to see what you’re doing on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., this might hurt your website’s effectiveness.
Another way to tie everything together is through a page or section on your website where you bring all the recent updates from Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc into one place. In this section, you can show people what you’re doing on various social networks without making them leave your site. You can also boost your following counts. For example, some visitors may already like you on Facebook, but maybe didn’t know you had pictures on Flickr. By showing them all content in one place, you can entice people who follow you on one site to follow you on other sites.
One example of brand that has a nice-looking social page/section is the Minnesota Timberwolves. Their Wolves Nation site displays recent content from a variety of social profiles and pulls in tweets/facebook updates from the team and from fans.
One of the best ways to tie all social content together is to take the concept above where you pull and display all recent content (from you maybe also from people talking about you) in one place, and then add a layer of community to it. Sometimes it makes to create your own branded community where your best customers can go to talk to each other and to your company experts. With a branded community, you have full control over creative, features, functionality, and most importantly, data/metrics on what’s working and what’s not working. This enables you to understand the true value and ROI of your community.
These communities can have groups, forums, discussions, contests, promotions and internal messaging systems. You can repurpose some of your content here (and from outside social networks) for email newsletters and usage in other owned media channels.
These communities can be public or private and can integrate with third-party social networks, too. Obviously it’s important to go where your audience is and participate in these outside social networks (if it fits with your goals and objectives). Your community and company can exist on a variety of outside social media platforms, but you might not want to have your “community home base” there if you’re interested in giving people the best user experience possible while fully understanding the value of your community.
What do you think about these three ways businesses can tie their social content together. Can you think of other ways?