Harry's Tech Space

Read my experience with different products and technologies.

Category: social media

Articles detailing about various social media news and tips to get most out of it.

Social Media Marketing: The Art of guerrilla selling

Social Media Marketing: Guerrilla Selling

We come across people trying to sell us various things. Since every organization survives on its goods being sold, marketing and sales become very important parts of an organization. As sales become important for survival, it also poses a moral hazard. The hazard is of people trying to sell the products at any cost. Here in the dark part of marketing too comes into picture. This article is my attempt at focusing on dark part of social media marketing I encountered recently.

As the social media is ubiquitous, a marketer would be tempted bring brand awareness about client by posing in as a normal customer asking questions just to find loophole to slip in his product recommendation. I call this as guerrilla selling(term coined by me) because It uses trust posed by fellow members on the marketer. This mild cheating tactic of social media marketing is used to build awareness and is not for getting a conversion.

Marketing: What it is?

3 Things are important in measuring effectiveness of Marketing campaigns. They are reach, engagement and conversion. So a company based on its campaign goals tries to maximize one of the above 3 things. If a company wants awareness to be built it will focus on maximizing reach and engagement. If sales is important then conversion process is made smooth, and reach and engagement are made to feed into conversion. So in totality its the campaign goal that defines even the medium for campaign and what needs to be done.

After the goal is set, the medium comes into play. It can take the form of Social Media Marketing Campaigns, or Search Engine Marketing Campaigns, Display Advertising Campaign etc..All these campaigns have different characteristics making them suitable for different goals. Guerrilla Selling is dark part of social media marketing campaign.

(See Also: What is guerrilla marketing – wikipedia.)

Bad Social Media Marketing:

The guerrilla selling is part of unethical practices of marketing. This tactic leverages the trust placed on members to misuse them for promotions. For example, Deliberately asking questions on ULIPs in personal finance groups when intention is to bring awareness about the product.

Leveraging the Trust Dynamics

In social media groups formed with particular themes, there will be a captive audience receptive to particular message. In case of personal finance groups it will be receptive to financial products. The marketer deliberately asks questions so as elicit views from the members about the particular problem. Once views starts pouring in, the marketer will go though it engaging the members and slowly planting the seeds of message he needs to put.

Since the members when sharing the view consider other person as another member and give honest reccos. Whereas marketer in member clothing is more interested planting seeds of his message. This leads to conflict of interest as the marketer is expected to be unbiased.

The bright side:

Since marketer is posing in member clothing, if he is not caught out he will be able bring awareness about the product at much cheaper costs compared to costly advertising practices. Also due to involvement of members it leads to increased engagement. This marketing mechanism treads the path of unethical behavior hence keeping the cover intact is important. The intact cover also helps in increasing the reach as members may view message at later point of time.

The Prey:

The idea of planting message without cover being blown is very old tactic and also reason behind growth of religions around the world. The major shield for the victim will be his own awareness about the thing. With Internet being wide and big, its better to increase the awareness constantly with the help of it. Its also better to build pipeline to feed oneself with conflict of interest free knowledge to guard against newer threats.

The next line of defense to protect him will be in the company of real “conflict of interest” free experts. The experts will guard the person from smaller ignorances he might be harboring. So as a human, our best advise is to spend in th “society” of experts. If a marketer does DNS Poisoning kind of moves in social media, this society of experts will call the bluff quickly to thwart the attack.

Hope you enjoyed the article. Stay safe by investing in your own awareness.

Resurrecting the Social for SKDRDP with Facebook Page Insights

In my previous article my one month stand with SKDRDP, I explained how I had go about bringing SKDRDP website on track, The ordeal I had to go through to introduce analytics.

This article will be dealing with the dawn of Social on SKDRDP. Technically speaking the story for this article started on 7 April 2014. The FB page I created for SKDRDP was on 7th April. The FB page laid the foundation for what I call “Social Era”.

The dawn of Social Era

The social era started with me opening the FB page for SKDRDP. I opened the page on 7th April. I decided to open it as the main aim of ED was to reach more people, and also the ability to share the photos of huge array of programs that used to happen with SKDRDP. On website, my skill set nor site’s disk quota was not sufficient to create a photo gallery, so I decided to go for FB as I could share unlimited photos and also provide link/badge to site for site visitors to reach it.

Some days after I was inducted, a circular was sent to all project offices to indicate my hiring as well as directions for sending the photos of programs. By April the sending had gathered steam and I was getting mails with photos of various programmes. To clear off the backlog of photos, I unilaterally decided to create page of SKDRDP, and start uploading photos to it.

First Steps on Facebook and Facebook Page Insights

Once I setup the page with filling all the requisite information, the main roadblock came upon me. The roadblock was of users, with lot of SKDRDP pages floating around on FB, it was difficult to establish a strong user base. Hence I send the page suggestions to many of my personal friends. Once my personal friends liked the page, I was able to be noticed by some outside people too. With people noticing the page, I had conquered the first roadblock.

The second roadblock was of Content. Since the page was set up with ultimate intent of sharing the photos of various programmes that used to happen, content was with me already in the form of photos. Later I created various albums for the photos and uploaded them. The photos were getting shared immediately, which resulted in the reach and engagement metrics to be low. But the album based division of photos helped in the things being more manageable initially. With the albums and huge backlog of photos I had at my disposal, I was able to tide over content wave but I was about meet a much more bigger wave called analytics.

The era of analytics started actually in the middle of content conquering mission. Since analytics requires minimum of 30 likes, I had to wait a little, but once I had 30 likes I claimed the special URL and activated the analytics. I was not much hooked to analytics in the beginning, but later on I started using it often. By end of April the page had around 55 likes, but the page was noticed by daughter of Dr. D Veerendra Heggade, and the day itself the page netted 50 likes to reach 100 page likes. With her liking the page, the page started getting noticed by  family members of our founder and also started getting lots of engagement. I searched for reason daughter of our founder was able to reach, then I came to know that, the ‘post scheduling’ which I had started some days ago was the thing.

My Social Analytics a.k.a Facebook Page Insights journey

I found the technique for post scheduling simply by luck. I just stumbled across feature in Facebook Page insights which would tell me when the page fans were mostly active on a particular day in past week. Based on that I would schedule the post.

The top Bar of Facebook Page Insights screen looks like this.

Top Bar of Facebook Page Insights

The basic insights I want from Page appears here. In overview all the basic stats are displayed. This screen shows the action in past 7 days. This basic stat is enough to indicate the overall health of page.

The screenshot of topmost row in Facebook Page Insights looks like this.

Basic Stats section in Facebook Page Insights

These are the basic most data in Facebook Page Insights. Left most is page likes, the 2nd number is how many people liked the page this week. I give more importance post reach in middle column. The post reach indicates how many people viewed posts from this page. The number 650 means in past 7 days 650 people saw the posts from this page. the number in red indicates percentage of decline from previous week. The engagement column shows the engagement metrics i.e. how many likes, comments, shares, or mere click of mouse on the post.  The people engaged tells how many unique people engaged (i.e. clicked/liked/commented/shared) with the posts.

All the above tells the health of page. Below it is section telling health of posts in Facebook Page Insights.

Recent Posts section in Facebook Page Insights

Normally I don’t give much attention to this section, I just glance over reach and engagement for posts. For the numbers which jump out, I just dig deeper why it happened. In above pic the post with 521 reach was because it was an advertisement of Agro Equipment Renting and was shared by 4 people. Even the photos of Dr. D Veerendra Heggade, our founder gets lots of reach and engagement.

Next section is of comparison with other pages whom we consider as our competitor on Facebook Page Insights.

pages to watch section in Facebook Page Insights

This section compares the pages I have chosen to compare with. SIRI is subsidiary of SKDRDP and sells the products made by rural women. I often compare this page with Greenway Grameen Infra (reason: I simply love this company). The posts this week is actually very less. normally it races to 30 posts in busy weeks and averages around 18 per week. Even the engagement metric is understated in pic. Normally this metric stays around 100 for SKDRDP. For Greenway Grameen Infra, if Neha Juneja’s interview are shared then their engagement runs to 100 with ease. For smaller mentions of company or its founders the engagement rates are low.

The above said things are constituents of SKDRDP’s overview page. The next most visited tab in Facebook Page Insights is posts tab to determine ideal time to post.

scheduling tab in Facebook Page Insights

In the above shown pic the ideal time to post is at 8pm with highest point on the peak. This graph plots the average page fans who were active during given time slot. The number 56 indicates that on average 56 page fans were active on Facebook during 11am (this average is of past 7 days average). The weekdays number shows how many fans were active past week.

Conclusion

This was my journey with SKDRDP and its Facebook page. The page and I have come long way. Its this social era which began with dawn of FB page which transformed things around. Looking at the success of the page, the temple people have started a grand project to bring all the Shri Dharmasthala Manjunatha Temple properties under one control. All the education institutions of temple and all other initiatives are being brought under one roof by setting up a grand page linking to other sub pages.

The centralization at temple has helped me to continue my journey towards entrepreneurship. I think this post may be the last post as employee of SKDRDP. Its always necessary to keep on learning, widening our world views, because if we return to same point where we began, we will atleast be much wiser.

You are reading an Article by Harsha Ankola, originally posted on Harsha’s Tech Space. If you have enjoyed this post, be sure to follow Harsha on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

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