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Published on September 2nd, 2009 | by Saurabh Pandey

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Why You Should Sack Your Social Media Agency Now?

What are people not doing in the name of Social Media Marketing! Creating funny videos, writing dummy comments, pasting banners on facebook, making false promises, expecting unexpected, the list is endless!

The bottomline- that’s not social media marketing! If your agency has ever given you the following recommendations- I suggest change your agency before it’s too late.

Your brand cannot afford, ill managed, ill conceived and worst of all ill-strategised social media marketing program.

Spend time on understanding what would you want to achieve and what key responses would you want to elicit. As also how would you engage your prospects in long term meaningful and creative ways that will help you achieve the above objectives.

Getting a social media marketing plan from novice (and even MNC) ad agencies who do not have depth of knowledge or personal exposure is like getting treated for an ailment by a quack!

So avoid any agency that claims or recommends these following things:

1. “Outsource your complete social media marketing: We will deploy 2 content writers and we have an inhouse reputation tracker, with the help of these we will manage your social media.”

Even if some part can be outsourced, you need to have a community manager or an Online Reputation Manager inhouse. The tone, immediacy, empathy, passion and knowledge cannot be replicated or outsourced. You have to have an inhouse incharge for this.

2.”We will create a positive buzz around your brand by writing dummy reviews and comments across review sites. We shall also create 10 ghost blogs.”

Your customers are not naive! There is a proper thoughtprocess and strategy needed to defend and create reputation. Don’t ever create dummy blogs and don’t get trapped in creating dummy comments.There is every possibility that this could backfire. Building reputation takes time, destroying it doesn’t!

3. “We will filter negative comments and publish only positive comments on your blog/site- “

To me it’s wonderful if someone comes and says negative things on my face in my house, rather than going all over and spreading the bad word around.

This is an opportunity to display the comments and display your actions to everyone else. This is an opportunity to convert a negative person into an ambassador.If need be create a discussion, let others participate. Let everyone contribute to finding a solution. Reward people who bring up negative but relevant issues which can help you become better. Be poistioned as a customer centric and empathetic brand. Don’t block negative comments. Block negative mindsets.

4. (OK this one is for your marketing managers handling digital marketing)- If your marketing manager wants to do a social media program to generate leads in 1 month- Time to stop his endeavours. Time to get him trained on social media. Social media is long term. Get your objectives straight-don’t kill your brand and reputation by doing a 1 month lead generation activity.

5. Once more -for your marketing manager- If he says he doesn’t believe in social media. because last time he did a 1 month program by creating a community- many people just came and said ‘hi’, but did not do anything meaningful, and that he doesn’t want people who just come and say ‘hi’.

Understand that when your prospcts say ‘hi’, they are looking for an opportunity to engage. You need to engage them. They might become your customers. If not, they might know of a friend who can. But if you think that they are waste and hence you do not interact-then my friend who is a fool?

6. Back to ageny bashing ;-) “We will splash facebook with banner ads, and we will also target by geography and profile etc.”

Putting a banner on a social platform is not social media marketing. Get your facts and knowledge right! Period!

I am not deliberating on defining social media- I am sure you have already read in my e-book , which also has my own copyright ‘Social Media Continuum’. If you have not, you can buy the same from the right panel.

Do you have more reasons that you can think of or have experienced, to sack your digital agency? All yours!

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