Eva Lucien is the MySpace Manager for the Women's Flat Track Derby Association
MZ: Describe what projects/organizations/activities you have marketed using social networking?
Eva Lucien: I am MySpace manager and social media team member for the Women's Flat Track Derby Association (WFTDA). Our team markets WFTDA's news and events to nearly 200 WFTDA leagues around the world, in addition to fans and non-WFTDA skaters.
MZ: What social media sites have you used for marketing?
Eva Lucien: We use MySpace, Tumblr, Twitter, and Facebook, with most interaction taking place through the latter 2 platforms. We haven't yet begun talking about Google Plus, but it looks like a good candidate for future consideration.
MZ: What aspect(s) of your social media marketing has/have been most effective?
Eva Lucien: Highlighting skaters & leagues of the month has usually attracted the most interest from our fans--it's personal info that they seem to like the most. We also use social media to funnel people into our website, which has really boosted traffic.
MZ: What aspect(s) of your social media marketing has/have been least effective?
Eva Lucien: Our social media campaign got off to slow start because, in the beginning, there was little communication between the managers of the different social media platforms and WFTDA management. So there wasn't oversight about what was posted and when; there wasn't any coordinated effort to market a specific product or announcement; we lacked up-to-date info about what to post, so news was often leaked by non-WFTDA sites; and we didn't have the central goal of driving visits to our website.
Since we've integrated our social media team into the management structure, there's been a lot more coordination among the different platforms & WFTDA.
MZ: What is the most important thing social media marketing provides that traditional marketing doesn’t?
Eva Lucien: Personal connection in real time. That's what people seem to be looking for with social media--not just a way to get information, but a way to discuss info and interact with other people who share their interests. It adds a personal face to a brand that is more difficult for websites and other types of marketing to achieve.
MZ: Have you experienced any drawbacks using social media for marketing?
Eva Lucien: It's been a little difficult predicting what social media sites are going to be popular, knowing when to invest in them, and knowing when to remove ourselves from others that are becoming defunct. As an organization that has recently gone international, too, it's difficult to know what's popular in other countries.
MZ: How do you measure the effectiveness of your social media marketing efforts?
Eva Lucien: We track web traffic coming from specific social media sites and resulting ticket/merch sales/click-throughs.
MZ: What is the one most important quality necessary for a successful social media marketing plan?
Eva Lucien: I'd say there's 2 equally essential components: 1. Knowing what you're trying to achieve using social media and being focused on those goals. 2. Investing the time to keep it current & interactive.
MZ: What is the one most critical thing to avoid when using social media marketing?
Eva Lucien: Aside from not being focused and interactive... It's easy to veer to the opposite side of the spectrum and post too many updates. Unless a user is a huge fan of a company, they aren't going to want to see 10 posts a day from that company. 3-5 posts per week has been a good average for WFTDA, though what is too much versus not enough varies among the different platforms.
MZ: Do you have any other advice for an individual or organization attempting to use social media marketing?
Eva Lucien: Help your organization write a plan or policy that guides members' use of social media. In addition to identifying the goals of your social media campaign, this plan should also cover how employees/members of your org interact with your organization's social media sites. What material are they authorized to post about your org? Can they answer questions from customers, or should they refer those questions to management? And so on.