Focusing social media efforts on driving opt-in, beyond fanning and following, has become best practice to attract consumers in consideration and purchase mode. Here are 5 reasons why.
Regardless of whether we're posting to fans and followers or advertising to key target audiences, moving social mobile consumers from their news feed directly on to the path to purchase has proven difficult. Luckily, as marketers, we have many other proven tools to help us move key consumers down the path to purchase.
It turns out that social is a great top-of-the-funnel channel, but unless we can connect it to middle-funnel tactics, we'll never get high-value consumers through to consideration and purchase. Focusing social media efforts on driving opt-in, beyond fanning and following, has become best practice. Here are 5 reasons why:
1. Reduced Cost, at Scale
Email capture is incredibly well-suited for the social mobile context and with social ad targeting and buying maturing, we are able to reach and potentially capture millions of new customers. With CPMs still relatively low and email conversion rates remarkably high, some marketers are capturing hundreds of thousands of high-value emails for under $0.50 each.
2. High Quality Leads
Many years ago, I was lucky to work with one of the top beer companies in the US and was able to focus on their relationship marketing programs. When we began, a large portion of their house lists had been built by sweepstakes promoted through display, packaging and broadcast. As a result, they had captured mostly consumers outside of their key target groups-way outside. The tactics, over the years, had been effective at growing numbers, but hadn't attracted enough of the people they wanted to engage most. A database of millions of the wrong people is useless. Social solves this problem.
3. More Engagement
Over 80 percent of daily users of Facebook are on a mobile device. Over 70 percent of Twitter users are as well. The only way to reach social mobile consumers is directly in their news feeds, where they spend most of their time. Luckily, mobile news feed ads are the most effective ads available today. Additionally, consumers are in social to engage with content. So marketers are equally fortunate to have full screen posts (ads) and takeover landing experiences to both compel and capture directly in the social stream.
4. Establish New Relationships
Remarkably, for many marketers, well over 50 percent of emails captured in social are net new to their existing databases. Every capture is valuable as you're either building loyalty, building consumer profiles or establishing new relationships, all good.
5. Millennials Use Email
Seriously, I'm not kidding. While Facebook recently admitted usage among teens had slipped slightly, and Twitter and Snapchat (and Vine and Instagram) are taking more of their time, the ever-important Millennials are still very active social users and, it turns out, email users as well. Different reports share different insights but generally it's estimated that over 60 percent of Millennials send and receive email daily, and most do it across devices. So that's a relief.
Of course, all this assumes you have developed the tools and expertise needed to use email to reach and convert customers. At this point, most marketers have at least basic email marketing programs in place. The combination of social and email can be incredibly effective for both converting prospects and extracting lifetime value.
So get to it! Shift some of your media dollars to capturing email addresses from key audiences in social. I guarantee you won't be disappointed by the results.
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Marko Z Muellner has been a digital marketer for more than 18 years with deep experience in cross-channel, integrated, and multi-touch marketing and communications strategy, creative development, and account management. He has spent his time learning how digital and social media marketing is applied in nonprofits, international digital and PR agencies, start-ups, global sportswear and beer brands, and at a leading Web analytics and optimization company. This experience has brought him to the stage as a featured speaker and to the pages of top-tier publications as a columnist. His social media and digital marketing expertise have been featured in ClickZ, Luxury Daily, the SmartBlog on Social Media, Mobile Marketer, Social Fresh, and InsideFacebook to name a few. He is currently the digital vice president and group director at Edelman in the Portland, Oregon, office and he can be reached on Twitter at @markozm.
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