A Branded Community is Integral to Your Social Strategy
In an article entitled How Branded Communities Leverage Your Social Strategy that appeared on Adweek.com the author Neil Rosen discusses how important branded social communities are to your social marketing strategy. He writes how companies build open social networks for their customers seeing the need as vitally important. These open social networks would include a website, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and perhaps a few others. These communities are valuable and necessary but they don’t deliver optimal value for brands. In other words, being a part of these groups is necessary but does not cause companies to reap great rewards. Rosen surmises that while open social networks are necessary, closed communities are also crucial and provide high rewards to companies.
Communities provide an opportunity for followers and prospects to have a private interaction with the brand, in an environment controlled by the brand, without distractions. Rosen writes, “Prospects and customers appreciate the ability to communicate with your company in a more private environment.” A private community allows a place where customers and potential customers can provide honest feedback about your company’s performance. They can also go there to receive advice from your company experts and brand advocates on places like forums, and message boards.
Rosen writes how branded communities are a great place to show all of your campaigns and social presence. A branded community is meant to run in partnership with your open social accounts. You can set up your online community so that all of your tweets, blogs, videos and other social activity is streamed into one place allowing people to see your overall social activity in one place.
Branded communities also are a great place for your customers to purchase your products without being shown competitors brands and offers simultaneously. The branded community provides the privacy and one-on-one attention that can translate directly into sales. By linking your community to the customer’s user profile you are able to track sales and give you feedback on how your campaigns are performing.
Rosen concludes that a key to having a strong brand community is that you need a product or brand that people want to talk about, “it has to be a situation where value is created for the participants who are talking about the product or service.” This added value to customers requires that your community is active and engaging through helpful discussion boards, quick polls, and forums. If you would like to find out more about how we can help create a branded community to run alongside your open social communities please feel free to contact us.