Interview with Freddie Laker, Director of Digital Strategy, SapientNitro
Freddie Laker from Sapient Nitro will be keynoting at the social media world forum on the 15th March, and we caught up to ask him a few questions pre event on his tips using social media.
1. From your experience, if you had to recommend one tip for using social media what would it be?
So many companies are excited about their first corporate blog, viral marketing campaign or Facebook group, yet the pioneers and the bold are those already looking ahead at what’s next. To maintain hard-won, relevant profile and share of voice in a world of increasingly fickle consumers, marketers need to understand how social media is going to intuitively evolve and anticipate how to make existing and new tools and strategies work harder and smarter to keep the conversation going. I’d even go as far as arguing that in a couple of years only ‘silver surfers’ will still be referring to online collaborative tools as ‘social media’.
2. What do you think is the biggest thing that marketers fail to realize about social media?
Reaching marketing goals is less about the tactics employed and more about addressing and engaging today’s complex, modern consumer. Falling behind technology trends will lose you customers as they move forward without you but failing to meet customer expectations through the ‘right media’ will have exactly the same effect.
3. How do you measure success in social media?
Without a doubt, customer interaction and positive feedback. Any marketer worth his salt should recognise that the benefit of using social media lies in conversation: find out what customers like and dislike, get their views on your products, allow them to interact with your brand and build a brand personality. If your brand is failing to interact with consumers, the social media strategy is flawed and should be readdressed.
Social media monitoring tools can be set up for businesses to help deliver intelligence while facilitating a deeper understanding of the consumer but, ultimately all this analytical intelligence means nothing unless there is a continuous bi-directional and satisfactory relationship between customer and brand.
4. What have SapientNitro been working on recently?
Having a relationship with customers is no longer about just online, just offline or just mobile marketing strategies. It’s about culminating all of this to create one single, succinct multi-channel offering. As a result, we have been working with a wide variety of our customers to create strong integrated campaigns that engage consumers across a wide variety of channels.
We’re also leveraging our strengths in technology to develop very engaging cross-channel experiences that allow consumers to drive commerce from store to mobile to web and back again. I think some of the most interesting examples you will see from us in the near future is the continued integration of social media into more and more of our client’s work outside of traditional digital marketing in areas such as mobile, digital outdoors and online commerce.
5. Which other areas do you think will grow over the next couple of years?
Socially-enabled digital outdoor advertising will become widespread. Brands and businesses will become more and more open to user ratings and open feedback on their websites and those who fight it are likely to suffer the consequences. In addition, although it’s still early days, Google Wave will really take off. It has the potential to completely revolutionise collaboration and engagement.
Freddie Laker, Director of Digital Strategy, SapientNitro, will be presenting on day one at 14.00 – “Redefining the brand experience through Social Media” at the Social Media World Forum.