Many people new to social media view it as a stand-alone campaign. They come up with a list of things they want to do on Twitter or Facebook, then start implementing.

The problem with such an approach is that it doesn’t leverage existing momentum in other parts of the business, and social media is most effective when used in coordination with larger organizational strategies that are cohesive in nature.

Most of the time, social media is one of multiple pieces of a larger sales or marketing campaign that might span print, television, and the web. Those efforts will incorporate an integrated look, feel, and messaging, which should transition to any new social media activities. Ensuring that all channels are unified and synergistic reinforces a consistent brand identity and call-to-action to target audiences.

For example, let’s say we make chocolate mint flavored toothpaste, and it’s the greatest tasting toothpaste on the planet. But it’s got major value adds to our audiences in that it prevents cavities and whitens teeth while tasting so utterly delicious. But, for the sake of having a cohesive message across all our campaigns, we have to decide: what’s our core message?

Aha! But let’s say we don’t decide on a core message (a problem that afflicts so many great products and services). Instead, we use TV to promote the whitening capabilities, print to promote the cavity-fighting properties, and social media to promote its choco-minty flavoring. Such an approach would create confusion about the key product benefit, and would fail to capitalize on building momentum across marketing channels.

So, when clients come to us asking for a social media campaign, we first identify the core messaging, then allow social media to boost those existing efforts in new, dynamic ways.

Such an approach will surely make you and your customers smile. (Yes, pun intended).