Every new technology has a learning curve — and sometimes it feels like this goes double for social technologies. First, you need to learn how to use the tools, then you have learn how to use them to engage others.
It can seem like an awfully long road to walk, as Dave Curry explains in today’s lead story in SmartBrief on Social Media. It might even be tempting to wait until there are more case studies and best practices for these new services. But waiting for a blueprint to magically appear has its own dangers. Three reasons to jump in now:
- No one can teach you but you. Social-media marketing case studies can be valuable teaching tools, but that abstract learning can only take you so far. The most memorable lessons don’t come from the triumphs of one brand or the blunders of another. They come from personal experience. You’ll never learn as much by watching as you will by doing. Your mobile strategy needs to be tailored to your company’s needs, not taken off the rack.
- Starting small keeps your risks low. Keep your expectations in check and your ambitions modest — at first. Fail early and often, but do it in front of a select audience. That way, you can learn in a controlled environment, where very few people will notice if your earliest efforts aren’t as strong as they could be. Once you understand what works for your brand, you can expand your efforts.
- If you don’t, someone else will. While you’re waiting for the technology to be perfected, for the rulebook to be written, for the blueprint to appear, your competitors are on the ground and figuring it out for themselves. The extra experience and the additional opportunities to establish a community will be difficult obstacles to surmount.
Of course, not every company will end up embracing mobile — and some of the holdouts may have great reasons for doing so. But apprehension over the learning curve shouldn’t be one of them.
Are location-aware networks part of your social strategy right now? What are the biggest challenges these services present? Anyone want to make the case for waiting?
Image credit, daboost, via Shutterstock