Social Media Strategies: Don't Remain 'Anti-Social'April 2013 By Julie Shaffer
Paul Strack, president of CustomXM, was watching the local Saint Patrick's Day parade from the vantage of the balcony in his yet-to-open new sales/marketing office space overlooking Main Street in North Little Rock, AR. Strack was taking photos from the balcony, posting them on the social media site Instagram and tweeting them to his followers via Twitter. Several of his Twitter followers were also watching the parade from the street and they started exchanging comments. Strack invited them to come up and see his new office digs after the parade via Twitter.
Several of these folks took him up on the offer and stopped by the office. The new city-center office is intended to make marketing customers feel more at home (in contrast to CustomXM's plant located in an industrial park) and boasts a trendy décor. After giving them a tour, Strack suggested to one particularly impressed visitor, who was not yet a customer, that they should talk business sometime. Two days later Strack was walking into a meeting with this new potential client, the development director for a very large association, which happens to be a sweet spot for CustomXM.
Strack was pleasantly surprised by this turn of event—a fun, social media exchange turning into a potential new customer—but not shocked. "I can draw a direct line of new revenues since our involvement in social media—Twitter, specifically—and the ancillary growth from that," claims Strack. "We have had great success since 2009 combining these new and traditional marketing channels in an integrated approach."
Component of Cross-Media Marketing
CustomXM is a printer in transition, with a growing reputation as a marketing services provider that also provides printing. During the past two years, the company has driven an increasing number of integrated marketing campaigns for clients of all sizes, many of them including social media components, as well as direct mail with mobile linking codes, personalized URLs and even Augmented Reality markers.
"In all of our campaigns, we use social media as we preach a cross-media approach," Strack explains. In CustomXM's "Lunch and Learn" events, promotional messaging includes a mix of direct mail, e-mail and social media. "Our best successes occur when we use a 'refer a friend' approach that increases participants' chances of winning a door prize if they invite a friend who also attends. We put the link to the registration site on our social media platforms, drive people to the registration site, and from there they can refer a friend via e-mail. It's been very successful."