In Fall 2010 it was immense for me to consume a lot of social media marketing advice, as I wanted to be clear on many thoughts I had, around why do things need to be done this or that way in day to day operations in personal and business digital marketing use. What was changing and what had to be done to marketing plans. Why did we need to look at things differently! Some of my friends and colleagues at freelancers’ online meet up were worried that by end of 2010 , they would be out of contracts and had to do something about it. Them being web developers and designers, they had already noticed the shift in clients’ behavior and how it was getting difficult for them (as freelancers working in one group under one organization) to secure more business deals.
They had a website, CRM (customer Relationship management system/Database) and a forum, with some auto published social media “broadcasts”. It was merely my job as a friend to push it harder and help them score more leads and then of course business for the guys to deal with. As part of my search for more know-how on social media selling and how to create value out of content and the use of influencers, it was mandate for me to read more about it and find creditable advice to keep the guys busy coding and developing more websites and web solutions. Searching in amazon, I came across this book Trust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust by the famous author Chris Brogan and Julien Smith.
The authors made it clear from the beginning that it has to be you to ignite the action and start fixing things, rather than waiting for magic to happen. For me I was already in the mood for that and found this more exciting and encouraging too. In Saudi Arabia we have around 70% of the population are less than 28 years old, which means Millennial Generation are the dominating age segment. What this implies is that as service providers for individuals and small businesses, we had to understand more about this audience and use the influence we had to recruit more potential clients and engage more with current ones through unconventional approaches. This book describes how such segment is becoming so important to treat differently, as they sleep using the Internet and new social tools to interact and start conversations with each other. The book highlighted, why it is important to focus more on influencers and also gave examples of influencers’ marketing ideas, which could be used.
The authors highlighted ” if you want to succeed, don’t sit on the sidelines while new markets and channels grow. Instead, use the web to build trust with your consumers using Trust Agents”
They had a website and it had worked for couple of years back. While it covered all their previous work and clients, but still wasn’t driving the right number of projects. They worked with big forums and different organizations of different industries, but that was it, they didn’t search out for more from those people. “After reading this book we had to change our way of working to adapt and have stronger ties with influencers and work more on thinking differently to build more fruitful relations online. Though, this had been going before 2010 , but with this book, it became clearer that it had to be nailed faster”, Sami the group leader commented
Social influence of clients, social network tools, content planning, and new media consumption insights and patterns are highlighted in a way that had excited them to revamp the communication experience for their group and worked better than ever in a sustainable way.
This book being authored by two super social media and inline marketing experts, gave it more credibility to deliver more actionable steps and guides toward success in new media landscape.
Why building the trust is crucial for business? Consumers today are becoming less influenced by brand ads and lean in to hear from their networks, WOM and peer recommendations in play. Websites are important channels for driving many objectives, but what kind of trust do they offer for visitors/potential clients of your business?