I keep seeing articles prognosticating the “death” or waning of Social Media… puhleeeeease! The problem lies in us calling it “Social Media” instead of recognizing it as an evolution in communication and relationships. We are only scratching the surface here of the potential! And even if your audience does abandon a platform “en masse”… so what? And even if some tire of their usage, they will find themselves either coming back or finding a new place to communicate, share, engage, and interact. Scalable social platforms are not going away, migrations will happen — they always do eventually — but if it is not Facebook or Twitter it will be somewhere else you can still reach out, engage your audience, and interact with them.
So we need to keep in mind that, going forward, long-term brand success will not be dependent on a specific social media tool; it will be relative to the depth and breadth of the relationships built using the tools available and where the people find themselves communing. Building relationships and interacting with consumers is where the commerce of the future is heading. Yes, real relationships = brand interest & loyalty = success (money).
Remember, though, that social media is a facilitator of relationships, but it is not the relationship itself. Whatever way you choose to communicate, share and engage… it “is” social.
Once you find what works for your audience, drive a truck through that opening. It’s not enough to drive that truck through and keep on going. You need to park that truck, and get out to interact with your audience. “Listen” to your market and you will be able to relate to and engage your customers, evolving with them as they evolve and change. Remember… relationships are never static, so your brand must be able to move along with the relationship or be left behind.
Bottom line: the more responsive you are to your audience, the more responsive they will be to you wherever that engagement is taking place. Don’t wait for them to make the first move.