Let’s Talk SMAC (Social, Mobile, Analytics & The Cloud)
If you're not familiar with the acronym "SMAC," maybe you should be. Columnist Andy Lombard discusses why the intersection of social, mobile, analytics and the cloud should be central to your marketing efforts.
What is SMAC?
If you’re not familiar with the acronym, SMAC stands for Social, Mobile, Analytics & Cloud. It represents four major areas of importance to marketing today, and I believe it’s the foundation for businesses’ success in 2016.
In addition to each area holding its own, together SMAC boasts collaboration, mobility, accessibility and communication and provides marketers with a better understanding of who’s interacting with your brand.
Let’s take a look at each of the four SMAC areas of focus and why you need to incorporate them into your own marketing strategy, if you haven’t already.
Over the past several years, even the past couple of months, social media has evolved enormously. From the platforms Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to live-streaming video apps, all are changing the way companies operate and lend their focus.
Social media has become a tool that businesses utilize for brand awareness, relationship building, customer service, lead generation and much, much more. Staying on top of the latest updates, news and trends is crucial for executing a successful social strategy.
Not all businesses need to be on every social platform, but it’s important you know your audience and that you’re available to them wherever they are… which leads us into the next area of SMAC.
If you’re questioning why mobile is included among these four areas, maybe you should take a look at this year’s holiday sales from Amazon. Almost 70 percent of holiday customers shopped via mobile devices.
Mobile cannot be an afterthought. It needs to be integrated into everything you do and should be at the forefront of your marketing strategy. Today, your efforts need to be mobile-first, not mobile-friendly.
Ensure all your content is available without restrictions on any device a consumer is viewing. People shouldn’t have to zoom into the content on your website or have information cut off when they’re on their phones. You’ll lose potential customers that way.
Data and analytics are the root and the result of all marketing initiatives. Data you gather during marketing campaigns are a crucial part of what your future marketing output looks like.
The ability to gather consumer data has never been easier than it is with today’s tools. Analytics are the spearhead for all marketing, and without the ability to easily collect, analyze and access analytics, you’re doomed to failure.
The cloud refers to the hardware-free storage of files, available to access and save to wherever you are. Since the cloud’s introduction, it has made saving pictures, videos, documents and other files easier than ever by freeing up space on your devices, such as your computer or mobile phone.
It also has improved the ability to share. External hard drives and flash drives are no longer necessary.
The cloud is particularly beneficial for marketers because it fosters collaboration, business efficiency and globalization. Marketers are able to access data wherever they are in the world and react in real time to that information.
How Social, Mobile, Analytics & The Cloud Work Together
Now that we’ve defined each area of SMAC, let’s take a look at how the four intertwine.
What came first, the chicken or the egg? This scenario is all too familiar with SMAC. Which area came first? Which is more important?
In reality, each area is equally important. But really understanding how the four operate together will put you ahead of the curve and give you the competitive advantage you need to be successful.
The four examples below show how areas of SMAC work together to provide maximum efficiency:
1. Integrate social media opt-ins to your marketing campaigns to gather valuable interest and attribute data.
If you’re running an enter-to-win campaign, make the participants log in through one of their social media accounts to receive an entry. This will give you not only an email address, but also some important data based on what they’ve featured on their social profiles.
2. Feature the ability to share your mobile-responsive campaign on social media with a few clicks of a button.
All of your campaigns and landing pages need to be mobile-responsive in order to fully access all of the content from any device. Provide easy share buttons on your campaign so that users can share the campaign from their phones to their social networks with a tap of a button.
3. Save customer data in the cloud and access it anywhere to determine what your audience values, in real time.
If you’re running a campaign, you need to be monitoring it so you can respond promptly, whether it’s performing well or poorly. Thanks to the data being stored in the cloud, you can access the data wherever you are and react in real time accordingly.
At the end of the day, SMAC is all about accessibility and customer experience. Make cohesiveness of those four areas a priority, and you’re already on your way.