Marketing and Measuring a Social Brand Strategy Rob and I gave a presentation at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) in Las Vegas last week. The presentation is based on our experience with marketing and branding work for ski resorts, particularly Alpine Meadows in Lake Tahoe, CA. My friend Scott Carothers, General Manager of Wild Island Water Park in Reno, NV, took note of that work and the industry similarities between ski resorts and water parks. So he asked us to participate in the education section of the IAAPA conference this year. Thanks for the invitation Scott! It was great meeting people, hanging out with the Wild Island crew, and especially researching the industry…
Building a social brandBrands that have been successful online have had that success because they have engineered their brands to be social. Everyone wants to have a great story to tell about their brand’s engagement in the social space that brings new customers and builds loyalty, but those stories begin with an engaging social brand. [caption id="attachment_498" align="aligncenter" width="576" caption="The Social Media Tree"][/caption]
“How do I make social media bear fruit?”If social media success grew on trees, it might look something like this. Until science catches up with imagination, we suggest you build a brand rooted in the social psychology of human behavior and needs. That means focusing on content that supports the higher level necessities like belonging, esteem and actualization. But people don’t relate to brands in the same ways, or in the same places. Social brands will be able to use social media to branch out to their audience in fruitful ways that connect with customers and benefit the brand.
Authenticity and TransparencyThese words get thrown around a lot with respect to social media strategy. Unfortunately, they don’t mean much on their own. An authentic brand is one that engages on a higher level of human needs and interaction than the standard Price/Product/Promotion shtick. Some things are more remarkable and engaging than “unbeatable ski vacation deals.” A snowball fight is one of them.
Turn around and engageYour brand is more than your logo, your color scheme or your product. Your brand is the gut feeling your customers have about your product, service or organization.
[caption id="attachment_504" align="aligncenter" width="553" caption="Focus on how cool your customers are..."][/caption] This is our videographer, Tyler. He got swamped one afternoon last spring on the deck at Alpine by kids who just wanted to ham it up on camera and get on the alpine YouTube channel. Your customers define you by defining them selves. It’s the hardest thing for marketers and PR professionals to learn when it comes to social media, but we need to focus less on talking about ourselves, swing the camera around, and start creating opportunities for our customers to talk about us.