One common question that gets asked about social media marketing is how to make the most of it if your product or service is "boring," e.g. toilet roll, banking, compressed air canisters, insurance, etc. The trick is - as you'll see from Moleskine, a manufacturer of notepads - to make a feature of your brand's personality and highlight its depth: share knowledge, get customers involved, build strong emotional connections, and demonstrate how your product or service benefits them in their everyday lives. Let's take a closer look at some real-life examples. As you read through each point, keep in mind what is being sold here... notebooks.
Tips and tricks
Moleskine has a whole section of its website dedicated to user-submitted "hacks" used to customise its notebooks, and it shares these on social media.
Advertising new products
Of course, Moleskine uses social media as an avenue to promote its newest products. The frequency of such posts is steady, but the products are always photographed in imaginative ways, which appeals to the creative mindset of its fans.
Fan groups and sub-cultures centred on its notepads have arisen with no influence on the part of Moleskine. Rather than try to disassociate itself with these brand ambassadors, Moleskine realises their influence and actively promotes them on social media.
As always, asking questions is one of the best ways to encourage engagement from your fans. Moleskine's questions demand a mix of simple text responses and the submission of photos (with a prize on offer for the latter, which requires a bit more effort on the part of customers).
Speaking of contests, Moleskine features them regularly as part of its social media context mix, both one-off promotions and re-occurring competitions. The prizes on offer appeal to its fans, and showing photos of what's up for grabs, or current entries, makes the potential reward more tangible, therefore encourages people to enter.
Offering freebies and added value
Moleskine inspires its fans to make the most of their notebooks with free, downloadable resources.
Pairing with "cooler" brands
Moleskine does a good job of turning the humble notepad into something pretty desirable, but it only amplifies their desirability by working in conjunction with other brands that it knows its customers enjoy. How could you take advantage of something similar in your business?
Over to you
What do you think of Moleskine's approach to social media marketing? Has it inspired you to adjust your own strategy, or have you already got it down? Let me know in the comments below!
Andrew Macarthy is a social media consultant and the author of the #1 Amazon Web Marketing Bestseller, 500 Social Media Marketing Tips.