How to Create and Define Social Rewards That Map to Your Marketing Objectives


So you want to fold social into your loyalty program? Good! Because that’s a sound strategic move.

Many of your best customers probably follow you on social channels, visit your website, or receive other communication from you, but making it easy and natural for customers to participate in your existing loyalty program via social is essential.

How to do that while mapping rewards to the goals of both your overarching loyalty program and your marketing is just what this article discusses.

1. Know who your social customers are

The first step in the process is to connect with your customers’ social accounts. Provide an initial incentive to customers to get them to sign up on social or connect their social handle with an existing loyalty account number. Map that incentive to your overarching goals; for example, if your goal is to drive more in-store sales, entice consumers with a percent-off coupon for an in-store visit.

To kick-start the process, many organizations “socialize” an email: They email to a customer list with an incentive, such as a contest entry, and ask recipients to respond on their social channel of choice. This exercise not only helps the brand connect with customers on social but also gives a sense of which networks customers prefer.

If you don’t already have a loyalty program, now is the time to establish one. Make social media the hub for connecting the various facets of your program, letting customers know they will be rewarded for their social actions.

2. Make an actions map

Once you’ve given people incentive to participate in your social loyalty program, create a short list of social actions you want to reward—maybe a check-in, or using a #hashtag linked to your business, or any other action you want the customer to take.

Feel free to be creative, and start with the end-goal in mind. For example, if the goal is to grow earned media, you might consider rewarding consumers for actions they take on social that helps amplify your message.

Social actions should be easy for your customers to take, and something that they would naturally do. Maybe your customers would normally post an Instagram photo of your product or service. Reward that action immediately, showing your appreciation and reinforcing the behavior.

Listen for not only what your customers are saying, but how and where they are saying it, and use that knowledge to help determine your choices regarding social actions you want customers to take.

3. Define your rewards

Now that you know what actions you want to reward, the next step is to define the rewards you want to associate with each action. For example, maybe a Tweet warrants program points, whereas a check-in receives a coupon.

Again, rewards should map back to marketing goals. For example, a hotel that would like to increase on-site spending might offer a coupon for a free appetizer with the purchase of an on-property meal. Or a retailer seeking to increase in-store basket value might provide a percentage-off coupon once a certain sales price is reached.

Don’t stop there. To keep your participants surprised (and delighted), make sure to change it up once in a while. Add new actions and rewards that will continue to build customer loyalty. Seasonal events and promotions are a great way to do just that. Promote back-to-school opportunities, for example, to keep moms loyal and excited about your program over the summer. Layer in holiday event tickets as a social reward, or special seating at crowded holiday times.

Most important here is to be creative, tapping into what will surprise your customers and delight them to the point that they’ll want to further share with their social network.

For tiered programs, give VIPs the opportunity to participate in even more special promotions, creating additional earned media for you while increasing their loyalty and lifetime value.

4. Measure

Social media is bursting with opportunities for deriving data. Use that to your benefit and measure what is working well and where there is room for improvement. Fold that data back into your strategy to refine the actions that you want customers to take, the attendant rewards, and—most important—their impact on marketing and business goals.

Tie that social data together with tracking of rewards as they are redeemed. Encouraging customers to use their loyalty program card/number when they make a purchase gives you further data to help give you a more holistic view of your customer, providing greater understanding of their lifetime value.

* * *

Social can play an important role in measuring and reporting on loyalty program participation, and even on the impact of super-fans on driving word-of-mouth. Start with the end goal in mind and work backward, defining your social loyalty actions and rewards that are sure to surprise and delight customers, in turn creating loyalty sure to propel your business goals forward.

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9 Actions That Define a Working Day In The Life of a Social Media Marketer


Social media marketing is one of the best ways for businesses to increase their revenues. Given the fact that social media platforms have a large number of users, implementing effective social media marketing strategies, provides them direct access to a huge number of potential customers who are a part of this user base.

To tap the potential of social media, businesses depend upon experts in the field such as social media marketers, who in turn adopt the best social media strategies in order to generate maximum ROI.

Apart from carrying out a social media strategy effectively, which are the other activities that determine a working day in the life of a social media marketing professional?

1. Create a To-Do List

Social media marketers create a tentative list of things-to-do for the day according to the priority and work accordingly. For instance, they might have some important emails to send, some social media platforms which they need to check before they check others, conduct a brainstorming session with their team, perform an analytic overview of all the platforms etc. They also have to include task(s) carried forward from the previous day in this to-do list.

2. Check Account

Social media marketing professionals start their day by going through their email account(s) and replying to mails. Simultaneously, they check their social media accounts such as those on – Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, for updates. These updates can be a notification about a new fan or a new follower, a new tweet or a new post.

More often than not, they have multiple accounts on a single social media platform. To manage these accounts at the same time, they use various social media management tools. Most of these tools have a unified dashboard feature, which helps them check their accounts on various social media channels at a given point of time.

3. Respond to Tweets, Posts etc.

The next activity in the daily routine of social media marketers is – responding to tweets / retweeting / favoriting new tweets from other accounts on Twitter, which are relevant to their niche. Additionally, they update their status on platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ etc. and respond to the latest posts as well.

4. Posting Content on Social Media

The definition of content has completely changed with reference to social media and internet browsing habits. Today, a majority of people use their mobile devices to browse the internet and they look forward to interesting, topical content, which are shareworthy. This is why social media marketers need to know how to curate content, which their target audience finds shareworthy.

Owing to the fact that there are scores of content that go viral every second, they need to take their pick from the ones that are relevant to their niches and curate them for their profile or fan pages. For instance, listicles like – ‘winter fashion tips 2015’ or ‘fashion for the 90’s girl’ are some examples of curated content for an online fashion hub.

5. Publishing Original Content

Apart from curating content, social media marketers also need to post original content on their own websites or third-party sites in order to build brand credibility. The content can be anything right from a blog post, an article, an image, a video, infographics, case studies, white papers, user manuals etc.

They already have the content to be posted ready and just need to hit the submit button to publish. Additionally, they also promote these published posts by using social sharing buttons, which are commonplace in almost all the websites these days.

Some of the content can also be scheduled for publishing beforehand. This takes us to the next point.

6. Creating a Scheduling for Publishing

Another activity that social media marketers follow as a part of their daily routine is to – create a schedule for publishing the content. What they do is – manually schedule posts to be published on a particular day, date and time or use social management tools such as Buffer, Hootsuite, TweetDeck, SproutSocial, Sendible to automate the process. In either case, their content automatically gets posted on various websites even if it is a weekend or any other public holiday.

7. Ideation

Social media marketers take out time for a brainstorming session with their team and think of various ideas for their long-term/short-term social marketing strategies. For instance, they can come up with some new analytic tool that will help them better their performance or maybe discuss about a new social media trend or simply discuss about the best influencer outreach.

8. Evaluating Social Media Performance

A social media marketing professional also evaluates the performance of social media channels for making their strategies work. With the help of various analytic tools, they find out the bounce rates, keyword rankings, traffic volume etc. of different social media platforms. Based on such data, they can find out whether they have to create a new strategy from scratch or just alter the existing strategy for best social media performance.

9. Revisiting Social Media Profiles

Once they are through with the activities mentioned above, social media marketers once again visit their social media profiles and respond to new updates and post their own updates as well. This helps them reduce work for the next day and also, actively engage with their user base in real-time (if they too happen to be online when they respond to their queries or comments etc.).

Plan – Planning for the next day increases the productivity of social media marketers. It gives them a blueprint or outline of all the tasks that they need to carry out in a particular order. By following this outline, they can easily meet their specific objectives.

Days End – At the end of the day, social media marketing professionals cross check how many activities on their to-do list have been accomplished. Those tasks, which are still pending on their list at the end of the day, are taken up the next day.

These are nine essential actions, which define a working day in the life of a social media marketer. If you too have a similar job role or know someone who does, I am sure that you will find the points on the list familiar.

Do any of these or all of these activities feature on your schedule as well or do you follow a different track? Share your views on the same with us.