The Impact of Social Media on Your Marketing Plan

If you were to assign a value of 100% to all your marketing activity, what portion of that total pie would you give to each  piece of your marketing plan? Specifically, how much importance would you assign to social media?

Marketing-Pie

Let’s assign a value to social media as part of the entire marketing picture by using my 4-Spot Marketing Model. The four essential spots of marketing are:

  1. Branding – Your identity.
  2. Experience – What your customers experience.
  3. Conversation – Unpaid evangelism for your business.
    (This is where social media fits in)
  4. Promotion – How you promote and advertise your business.

BRANDING

Branding is the glue that holds your marketing plan together and the focus of all your marketing. At it’s core, marketing is the advancement of your brand. Without a definable brand, your marketing will be a continuous and frustrating search for the magic tactic that will solve all your problems. And, you’ll waste a ton of money. For that reason, I’m always tempted to apportion a higher importance to branding. But an awesome brand without the other four spots is useless.

Branding Importance = 25%

EXPERIENCE

The customer’s experience with your business is the number one determinant of customer loyalty. It is also the spark that fans the flame of word-of-mouth conversation. If Branding is the starting point and the glue of your marketing plan, Experience certainly seems to be the backbone. For that reason you might want to assign a much higher value to Experience. However, experiences without a brand are aimless, and if customers don’t talk about their experience, what good is it?

Experience Importance = 25%

PROMOTION

Usually the fourth spot in my model, but I’m saving Conversation for last so we can grade social media’s importance. I’m always tempted to give promotion a smaller piece of the marketing pie, especially advertising. But promotions can attract publicity from media outlets and stimulate customer conversation. And advertising plays the important role of extending your brand awareness to people who don’t yet know about you. Advertising also plays a major role in sparking word-of-mouth (see my recent word-of-mouth podcast conversation with Ed Keller).

Promotion Importance = 25%

CONVERSATION

By now, you think you’ve probably figured this out; 25% to social media, right? Hold on there, the social media slice of marketing pie is smaller than that. There are three parts to the Conversation spot:

  1. Person-to-person word of mouth – According to Keller Fay Group, offline conversation accounts for more than 90% of all word of mouth conversations.
  2. Social media interactions – Less than 10% of word of mouth takes place online
  3. PR (public relations/publicity) – Plays an occasional and sporadic role in Conversation, but can cause big, brief bursts of word of mouth.

Total Conversation Importance = 25%

So, now the question is: How much of that 25% goes to social media? I’ll be a little generous here and give it the entire 10% that doesn’t happen offline. That’s 10% of 25%. That means…

Social Media Importance = 2.5%

Yep, 2.5% of your entire marketing plan is dependent on social media. In certain cases, social media can have tremendous impact. Just a few weeks ago we saw how Facebook helped launch a small business. These cases are uncommon, and not usually durable.

Are you surprised at the 2.5% figure? How much of your time are you investing in your social media program?


Don’t miss out on free marketing advice. For updates on new articles: Receive The Marketing Spot by Email or subscribe in a blog reader.

2 comments
Sandy Barris
Sandy Barris

Great information, a lot of hot, hot hot marketing plan tips.

Keep em coming, great stuff.

Thanks for sharing that Branding is the glue that holds your marketing plan together and the focus of all your marketing. At it’s core, marketing is the advancement of your brand.

And you are so right on that 2.5% of your entire marketing plan is dependent on social media. In certain cases, social media can have tremendous impact.

By the way, if it’s OK with you I’d like to add that no marketing plan or marketing calendar should be set in stone!

If history has taught us anything, no matter how effective your plan may be, chances are, it will have to be altered at a given time; due to what your competitor(s), clients, future clients or suppliers are doing.

Here’s the kicker, don’t feel as if you have to be a psychic.

Don’t feel overwhelmed at the thought of needing a business and marketing plan so flexible that it takes away from the overall aim and goals that made you ‘hungry’ to market your particular business, product, service or idea in the first place!

No doubt about it, there’s an easy way to be sure that you can continue to have success in the future – if you just start off with flexibility in mind!

The best way to do so is to have a marketing plan and marketing calendar that is flexible and built to adjust itself when the time comes to do so.

Respectfully,
Sandy Barris
Fast Marketing Plan

Trackbacks

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Bo Cable, jordanmediafirm. jordanmediafirm said: The Impact of Social Media on Your Marketing Plan: If you were to assign a value of 100% to all your marketing a… http://bit.ly/fmJAG7 [...]

  2. [...] says a blog post by Jay Ehret, founder and chief officer of awesomeness at The Marketing Spot, quoting a study by [...]

  3. [...] all of our previous shows: Power to the Small Business Archive Related articles on social media: The Impact of Social Media on Your Marketing Plan How Engaged is Your Social Media Traffic? Study: What’s the Best Time to Post on [...]