As we embark on a conference with the promise that we will deliver the practical social media experience so many have asked for, we should start by taking on the biggest enemy of the effective marketer–the assumption.
Easy said. How is it done?
One technique I recommend is asking ”why” 5 times. Even if the answer seems to be satisfactory, even if it will be as annoying as junk-mail, don’t stop until you get to at least 5 “why” questions in.
Because more often then not a request or a statement may not be exactly what it seems. Take the concept of “social media engagement,” for example. It’s a widely used term these days, but ask 10 different people and you will get 10 different answers for what it means, why it’s valuable, and how to measure it.
Here’s another example. Brian Solis and Deirdre Breakenridge in Putting the Public Back in Public Relations put a spin on a very typical business question–-“who is my customer?”:
Figure out who your customers are and where they go for information.
Usually, we only think of understanding who the customer is. We don’t necessarily think of defining how our customer communicates, or who or what our customer sees as an influence agent, or where my customer gets her information. To build successful social media marketing strategies and plans we must know more than just what’s on the surface.
It’s time we start asking ourselves what else there is to ask before we continue too long down the path of old assumptions.
Do you have a story to share of success because you defeated the assumption? Please leave a comment, we’d love to hear your experience.