Is it visibility or engagement or conversation, what matters most?

Let’s have our social media presence or let’s enhance our social media presence… aren’t these are very common phrases being uttered by the brand marketers in their meeting rooms? Well, when the whole world is on a social media bandwagon who would ever want to be left behind? In this run for having a social media presence, most brand marketers rush and create social media profiles for their respective brands.

Having done this, a substantial number of brand communicators chose to ignore life beyond the creation of social media profiles. In order to create a successful social media presence, it is imperative to have a great degree of engagement in order to penetrate into the audience, get the attention your brand deserves and benefit the most from this exercise.

It is the engagement in social media that has the potential for building brand awareness, ensuring sales grow, keeping customers happy, satisfied and well-informed, generating business leads, keeping competition in check, seeking research inputs and even many times to the extent of creating thought-leaderships. Social media is driven by storytelling through the use of extensive research-backed data, visual elements, graphics, and infographics, etc., sustained delivery of communication, listening to the social media environment and responding to the feedback.

In between being present in social media and being able to generate a great engagement, there lies a crucial piece of ability of the brand communicators to develop, maintain and build a strong conversation. It is possible that your brand may have the best possible social media profile, but if no one sees them talks about them and gives any feedback or reaction, there is no use of having them at all. It is important to build up a conversation around the sharing of news, product updates or promotional material through your social media channels.

Whether it is to put up your social media platforms and links to them on your website in a prominently visible manner, and ensuring they stand out or finding ways to use promotions for upscaling the reach of these social media profiles. Most brand communicators kick off a social media presence in a hurried manner as the barriers to create social profiles aren’t too many. But inadequate planning and not having long-term clarity on achievable along with proper commitment and deployment of resources can completely jeopardise the social media presence of any brand.

To take ahead your social media presence, you need to build a conversation, which can support your line of thought and propagate it further among the audience. Brands in their social media communications need to trigger various things like current news, asking questions, creating discussion topics, creating debates and even having a standard note of thanks to the followers, etc., which can connect with the audience and engage them to participate in the discussion. Being interactive in nature, social media can bring immense results immediately if the brand communicators are able to connect with the audience.

While every single conversation may not individually contribute to the brand’s visibility, it has a huge potential to increase the further participation of other followers. If the conversation makes an audience curious, if it relates the message to the community and creatively executed, it will stretch the imagination of a larger audience and bring in further participation. You may have noticed that sometimes one comment in social media triggers the creative faculties of the audience and multiple people start expressing themselves in response to that particular quote or comment. And, what you get is a thread of entire communication with enhanced participation.

Of course, brands need to take a stand on things on one hand and also be flexible enough to adapt to the changing media environment and developments in real-time building a proper channel of conversation. Increased conversation leads to higher engagement, which in turn enhances the brand image and that’s what all brand communicators want… right?

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Praveen Nagda
Praveen Nagda is the CEO of Peregrine Public Relations, a full-service corporate communications and public relations consultancy firm delivering a pan-India reach to its clients. He also heads White Coffee, an independent events & celebrity engagement company.

Praveen has been closely associated with many national and international events related to cinema for children, art and culture. He has a well-rounded experience that cuts across all key sectors of PR & Corporate Communications.

He started his career with URJA Communications, an advertising agency specialising in technology brands, where he was instrumental in developing the PR division. Post this, he had a stint with Horizons Porter Novelli, a global public relations consultancy. Thereafter, he was heading the IT & Telecom division at Clea PR, a leading Indian public relations and communications company followed by a fairly long stint with Omnicom Group agencies viz. TBWA\India and Brodeur India.

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