Facebook & Social Media vs. Email: a Look at Commitment
Social Media. Email marketing. Both are mediums through which you talk to people, people who are interested in what you have to say. But both are not created equal. Here’s how to use each to get the word out to people who will listen about your business.
By Jason Moore January 25, 2011
Social Media. Email marketing. Both are mediums through which you talk to people, people who are interested in what you have to say.
We’ve posted about the relationship of Facebook and Email, and about how it is important to use all forms of communication to get the word out to people who will listen about your business.
But are all listeners created equal?
Committal and Non-Committal Relationships
I’m sure you’ve all heard someone say ‘I have 100,000 followers on Twitter’ or ‘I have 100,000 friends on Facebook’. But you know they don’t really have 100,000 actual friends, let alone know all of those people.
Chances are they are only really friends with a small fraction of those people. The same is true for businesses and the people who follow them through their social media outlets.
All a Twitter follower (or Facebook fan) has to do to listen to you is click a “follow” or “like” button. That’s pretty non-committal; you don’t know how interested those people actually are in what you have to say. After all, they have invested very little; all they’ve done is click a button.
Email is a much more committed relationship. People have to do more than just hit a button. They have to enter their information on your form and click to sign up. And if you’re using confirmed opt-in, (which you should 😉 ) open an email and confirm that they want to receive information from you.
Email: Commitment Through Confirmation
Confirmation is a big part of the commitment process. Not only are you asking them (through your signup form) “do you want to receive my information?” but you’re sending them an email saying, “are you really sure you want to receive my information?”
This can be used as a way to make sure they are serious about hearing from you and serious about one day becoming a paying customer. This is a lot like qualifying a sale – basically making sure that they are serious about doing business with you.
Social Media: Larger Audience, Less Commitment
Unfortunately social media doesn’t have the ability to qualify any of the people you are talking to, so you’re never sure if they are really serious about buying your product or signing up to your service.
But social media can still have a place with your online marketing. It’s an effective way to get the word out about your business and what you offer.
It’s also a good tool to help you keep an eye on what people are saying about your company. You can then better serve your customers by understanding their wants and needs.
Put Them Together for Best Results
By using social media avenues to direct people to your email campaign, you can get those people who are really interested in what you’re offering to sign up and learn more about why they should become paying customers.
The combination of social media and email is an effective way to build both audiences. In fact, we surveyed customers about how that combination has effected building their subscriber list as well as the growth of their social media followers.
As you can see, the majority of the people we surveyed either saw a boost in their subscriber base, or a growth in their social media followers.
In addition to helping increase your audience, you can also think of this combination of email and social media as a two-tier way to approach prospective customers.
First tier: Social media followers: people who might be interested
Second tier: Email subscribers: people who took the time to sign up and confirm. The fact that these people took the time to sign up to your campaign tells you that they care about what you are offering them.
Tell Us How You Use Your Email/Social Media Combo!
So which audience is better? Neither, they are just different! Using email to boost your social media voice and vice-versa is key to reaching as many people as possible.
Understanding the different levels of commitment audiences have will help you to create the right voice and content for the appropriate medium.
What’s your personal experience when using email and social media together? What techniques do you use?