An email marketing expert’s view on social media

I dugg up an older post of our contributor Scott Hardigree from indiemark. For me, it’s an interesting post since it shows how an email marketing expert looks at social media.

It’s amazing to me that many email marketers still don’t see how strongly email marketing, social media and other forms of marketing are connected.

Now, before you read this post, I should warn you that Scott wrote it a year ago. In a year lots of things change, but it’s still an interesting and for some readers maybe slightly controversial look at social media marketing and maybe even at email marketing. Read the post below.

Social marketing is on my mind and by the look of things I’m not alone. You can’t get a feed or pick up a trade publication that doesn’t refer to social media and its applications for marketers.

From traditional media outlets desperately trying to catch up to the most prolific smores (social media whores). They all have a stance, tip, or prediction.

It’s no wonder, as new users flock to social media and its usage rates soar (especially in the business sector), audiences are getting big, fast.

So you’re interested in social media as a marketing tool? Remember this “you get what you give” has never been truer than in this arena.

Push and pull

In direct marketing, advertising, and online marketing, it’s all about the push. Direct mail, email, print, SEM. Push push push. That’s not going to change any time soon. Why should it? It works. It’s necessary. But if you’re going to find marketing success in social media you’ve got to pull them in.

Social media users simply will not tolerate pushiness or thinly veiled solicitations. They don’t have to. There are thousands of credible voices out there willing to offer up their feedback, opinions, and recommendations in near real-time.

So what are hungry marketers to do? Try this. Instead of buying that same old media use tools such as Twitter or LinkedIn Groups to surround yourself with your prospects and give. Your time, your feedback, your expertise, your samples.

Are you a consultant? Offer up free advice to those in your target market. Selling an email solution to non-profits? Pro bono a charity that’s close to your heart.

In this world of hyper sharing and distribution, you’ll discover that those you help will sing your praises over and again. Choose wisely and they might even be your next, best customer.

That’s Scott’s post. Now, what do you think?

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