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Meet Zorka.Team: Danila Stol’

22 Oct

On what SMM is today, how can a business benefit from SMM, what social media trends are, and how to follow them.

DANILA STOL’

Head of SMM

 

10+ years of experience in digital marketing.

He is an expert in applied social technologies and navigating public opinion.

In the course of his career, Danila has worked with major banks, industrial companies and leading retailers on the Russian market.

Not surprisingly, being an alumni of a social science major, Danila has been very successful in turning ‘social’ to the advantage of his clients.

WHAT IS YOUR ROLE AT ZORKA.AGENCY?

I am the head of the SMM department at the agency. Thus, my responsibilities include managing the workflow of the department as well as building relationships with clients and suggesting them social media marketing opportunities that will work for their business.

WHAT IS SMM TODAY?

SMM — is an integral part of digital marketing that changes really fast. For a long time, SMM was considered to be merely a social media sales tool. While many clients still tend to believe this paradigm to be true, it is not really accurate: in 2021 onwards this trend is bound to change.  SMM is no longer social media marketing, but rather social media management. As SMM strategists, we manage the client’s project on social media. We work with brand’s loyalty and trust, and help the product build their brand.

HOW CAN BUSINESS BENEFIT FROM SMM?

Well, every business is unique. But to put it in a nutshell, as a channel for getting the information through to your clients, SMM is now the main advertising resource. There’s by no means a less important function which SMM has acquired recently. Quite frankly, I’d say that’s a ‘new’ key feature. It can be used as a tool to increase your audience loyalty and brand awareness, or work with your brand. This includes the brand of the employer. For instance, it can attract top talent in the industry or students interested in internships. Also, you can use it to send out invitations to various conferences, exhibitions, etc.  

SMM addresses a whole list of different tasks: building loyalty and reputation among your audience, connecting with existing clients and brand ambassadors, tuning your project to stand out of the competition. At the very first touchpoint, you should explain to your audience why they should go with your product or service instead of turning to your competitors. And more importantly, they should understand why it is beneficial for them to refer their friends to your business. 

We help businesses become unique. And this is not just about a product or service. It is about the idea which a business or company started with in the first place.

 

HOW TO FOLLOW SMM TRENDS?

The most important thing in SMM, as in many industries, is to constantly stay in the loop of what’s going on in the market, and to have a certain vision of how it may change tomorrow. In order to maintain your brand positioning and understand whether it is worth getting involved in a particular social campaign, businesses must have a clear understanding of a particular trend. You should know how it originated and be able to predict the outcome.    

There is always a fine line. It is true that certain brands can afford raising some hot social topics or even expressing quite radical ideas publicly while others may face detrimental consequences. Brands should always be mindful of trends. However, the best case scenario may well be not getting involved at all. 

Effective marketing activities on social media greatly depend on whether you have been able to find the right people to do the job. It is best if they have worked in the industry for years and have recent hands-on experience. Business owners don’t expect their clients to come up with a new product or service on their own every time they need something. Actually, they assume that clients will be willing to turn to professionals and buy a product that meets their needs from them. Nowadays it is true for SMM as well. If a business wants to work with social media, the best solution is to turn to professionals who have been doing this job for years.

WHAT ARE THE LATEST SMM TRENDS?

Well, I think there are 3. 

Firstly, there is clearly a demand for authenticity.  We can indicate two levels of this trend. At the micro level, we are all fed up with stories about the best product. At some point, this happened to street adverts. It didn’t matter how cool the design of your advert was, there had already been a similar one on every corner. No wonder, nobody paid attention.  

At the macro level, it is a consequence of the revolutionary changes in modern society. People cannot stand anyone trying to boldly sell them everything any more. Have a look at the most successful advertising campaigns. They are no longer about money, but about values, messages and purpose. This algorithm works like this: people who have purchased a certain ‘value’ will begin to transform their lives. Then they will start buying certain products or services and start using certain brands which they associate with these new values. This is how this trend originated.

We are now working with many foreign clients. As for the Western market, we have noticed that there’s a new trend coming along. We expect it to be gaining momentum in the next few years. Apparently, there’s a change in brand promotion strategies. Big companies are no longer trying to boldly sell their product. Instead, with the help of social media they endeavour to engage their audience with moral values and a social standing that the company supports. Their social media is full of such calls to action as ‘Be kind’, ‘Take care of the environment’, ‘Have a healthy lifestyle’, etc.  These messages are the result of popular social concepts, e.g. body-positivity, mildness, resource-sharing, eco-responsibility and others. When concepts and moral values of the product start to resonate with the audience, sales come along in no time.  

Finally, the last trend that I’d like to talk about is mainly related to business-models. Modern companies have transformed into complex ecosystems which offer their clients a wide range of products and services. Thus, by purchasing a product, customers are more likely to stay in the ecosystem. This doesn’t happen because clients think that they are getting a better deal. The decision to stay with the brand is largely influenced by the audience loyalty and the reputation of the brand. In this case, it is more important than the difference in price or quality of the product. You may wonder how to build that loyalty and how to attract quality loyal customers. The solution is right here. You should use the power of social media to achieve your goals. Create your brand’s distinctive style and promote it on your social media pages, make up a set of unique values that your brand supports, work with your brand positioning, etc.