So you work in social media and you just signed a new client…now what?
Well for me, I need some information. I don’t just jump in feet first and say “you need a Facebook page and everyone should be on Twitter,” that would be irresponsible. The first step is asking the right questions.
This is how I go into a new client. Let me know in the comments if I’ve missed anything.
The “Right” Questions
These are not inherently the “right” questions, but these are the questions that I ask to get the information I need to create a social media strategy, designed to accomplish exactly what my clients want.
What does your organization do? (in 30-60 seconds)
Explain to me what your organization does in 30-60 seconds, and as if I’m in 8th grade. Unless you have one audience that is exclusively intelligent and fluent in industry terminology, I want a simple definition of what it is that the company does. If I have to potentially tell someone in 140 characters what a company does, it needs to be short and to-the-point.
*For the record, I probably already know this, because I did my homework. I need to know how YOU talk about the company.
What do you want to accomplish? What keeps the CEO up at night?
Increase awareness? Provide Customer Service? Increase Revenue? Decrease Costs?
Many times clients don’t know the answer to this question but the idea here is simple: what is your business goal?
Then we can figure out how social fits.
What does your organization do better than anyone else?
What am I working with here? What can I run with? Who is your “star player?”
What do you want people to think of and feel when they talk about your brand?
This is vital to content creation and conversation.
When people think Gary Vaynerchuk, they think about wine, honesty and passion.
When people think about Apple they think about clean design, iProducts and innovation.
When people think about Zappos, they think of shoes and customer service.
What do you want people to associate your brand with?
Tell me about your customers
First, tell me why your customers work with you.
Who are your top 5 customers? How did you acquire them?
Who are your worst 5 customers; the demanding, rude, low margin ones? How did you acquire them?
Finally, what is the length of your sales cycle?
Tell me about your competitors
Who else is in this industry? Are you competing locally or nationally? What do your competitors do better than your company?
How much time do you have to devote to this?
Do you have time daily, weekly, (gasp) monthly? Is someone able to be totally accountable throughout the day or are there multiple people that can carry the weight?
What can you give away?
Every business has something that they can give away. It could be information, service or product.
Are you a foremost thinker on a specific topic? Is there some content that you can give away on a regular basis that will build loyalty and trust?
Do you have a low-margin chachky or dohicky that people really love? Can you afford to give away free dessert or a beer…or bacon?
So that’s what my first meeting looks like. Then I go back to the lab and do a ton of research. And that’s the basis of how I begin creating a strategy. What did I miss? Sound off in the comments.