It has been quite a crazy few weeks over here at the T2M offices. We've moved into some new digs (very exciting!), kicked off a white paper-worthy project with a new client, and attended the NRF show in New York.
Nine meetings in three days cemented for us just one unwavering fact: Multichannel marketers are champing at the bit to figure out the optimal marketing mix in 2010, and they are becoming increasingly aware that Social Web is going to have a role. The conversations we're having now will help to shape and define where Social will live in an organization's P&L, and how the channel will be used for each individual company -- and believe us, it IS an individual decision.
In the case of an organizational products company we work with, we've decided that Social Media lives in the world of customer service. It makes the most sense, given the demographic of their customer file and the fantastic opportunity they have to create a position of authority on all things home-organization. Will we drive incremental revenue? Most likely, yes. But the greater goal is to identify the difference between those customers who are engaged with us Socially, and to drive deeper loyalty using the fourth channel.
On the other hand, we have another client who produces gorgeous, handcrafted and collectible children's toys. In this case, we've been charged with identifying and communicating with the purchase influencers -- the children and collectors -- as opposed to the final purchaser of the product. This approach falls somewhere between PR & Web Marketing since our goal is most definitely to drive purchase behavior by creating desire on the side of the product's user.
How do we make these determinations? With lots of open dialog between departments, and deep analysis of customer profiles and personas. It's like one of my bosses used to say about multichannel marketing: "Part art, part gut, part science, part luck."
So as you explore Social Marketing, and its best use for your organization, be sure to challenge the paradigm that it must live under the purview of your eCommerce Marketing team.