Are all social marketers at risk of developing a split personality disorder?

Psycho - Norman IS Mother

Despite the ubiquitous nature of social media and its increasing impact in digital marketing, the majority of marketers fail to maximise the channel’s full potential. We are seeing it time and time again.

What many seem to have forgotten is that social is sold on relationships. In an earlier blog I explored whether B2B marketing is emotional, and the fact that a relationship needs to be established with a potential buyer in the early stages of communication. I’m sure you agree, whether you work in B2B or B2C. But many might still wonder, how?


Authenticity and relevance

Personalisation is the prerequisite to any online communication these days. Untargeted messages are a thing of the past; you need to segment your audience. And listen – not just to your audience, but to what your brand is actually sharing too. Would you really introduce yourself to a new contact by quoting your latest research at them in a monotone drawl? No. So why are you doing it on social media? Well, we all go a little mad sometimes. But remember to humanise your brand and take part in social conversations naturally.

Social presents a unique marketing opportunity. It gives brands the chance to create and develop a personality as well as a tone of voice. It can be what sets them aside from the competition – an increasingly important aspect to consider in today’s marketplace, particularly when it comes to content creation.

Marketing Land recommends you consider the 3 Cs: culture, community and conversation. A succinct way of putting it and good advice to bear in mind. Because no one really responds to the hard sell anymore (it’s why we all moan about PPI cold calls, or is that just me?) Rather than broadcasting irrelevant noise, brands should embody the values that they are trying to communicate through their targeted content.


Create diverse content

“Social media’s ability to develop and maintain multiple identities may be one of the most useful marketing powers of the Web”, according to a Forbes article.

Well, yes and no. Clients, prospects, bloggers, suppliers and influencers are vastly different audiences, but of course you still want to appeal to them. Thankfully, with better monitoring tools and now Big Data we can be more informed of our audience segments. But when there are often several people involved in a purchase, how are you supposed to market to these multiple audiences?

  1. Develop a split personality disorder
  2. Set up multiple social profiles

Unless you feel a particular affiliation to Norman Bates, and I hope you don’t, neither are what I would call a solution. Developing a personality disorder is hardly ideal, while multiple profiles (without a clearly defined purpose such as customer care) will only add to your workload.

Don’t lose sight of your objective. Instead, revisit your plan and what you have set out to do. Distinguish between your brand tone and your overall brand voice (yes, they are different things). Ultimately, any and every audience wants to hear about the benefits as opposed to the features of your product or service. So revisit and optimise your content based on their needs.

By creating more diverse content, and content which is specifically targeted at these audience personas, brands can meet their customer relationship management goals. It is an ongoing cycle: foster new relationships, nurture existing ones and listen to feedback – but make sure you connect with your audiences emotionally to drive engagement. Then as you build a rapport with your audiences, trust in your brand will grow, as will your social reach. And all without having to dress like your mother!

If you’re interesting in learning more about balancing multiple audiences, then come along to the Social Speakeasy on 9th October! Full details at


(c) Image: Universal / Paramount Pictures

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