Thursday, July 18th, 2013
Social media marketing is a brilliant way to tap into targeted customers. We all agree that.
Do you have a focused social media marketing strategy?
According to marketingcharts.com 28% of small businesses do not have a social media strategy. 4 Out of 5 of small businesses who had no social media marketing strategy last year plan to implement one this year.
To compete you need to get social.
Let’s look at some top tips to get you going:
1. Get Customers with Good Calls to Action
A very important part of social media is getting people to actually do something. It’s all well and good having people read your social media post, but if you don’t present a clear action to take the message is pointless. Facebook, Twitter, and other online platforms should point, funnel, or lead visitors to a specific action.
2. Have CTA’s in your Facebook Posts
Facebook is a massively popular social media platform. But many of us don’t get enough out of it. The simple process of asking someone to share your Facebook post can massively increase your reach.
3. Make Your Calls to Action Stand Out
Generic calls to action don’t work as well as when you are a bit more creative. You should make your calls to action an important part of your social media posts and not something that comes as a post-script.
Calls to action like “check this out”, “try this out”, “get your ticket now”, “sign up today”, and so on will really help increase your fan-base and increase your business size.
4. Lead Your Followers
In this day and age, people are crying out for leadership. Ensure that you are absolutely clear in what you are saying; and be inspiring in the way that you say it. If you have the attention of your readers for a short period, make sure you lead them to the correct conclusion about your business, and help them to achieve their goals.
5. Test Different Calls to Action
Many people just add “click here” or “sign up” as their call to action. They don’t consider that these may not actually work in the specific scenario of the social media message. Try different calls to action and find out what the success rates are. Get the calls to actions right for your business, and target demographic, and you really can will make your social media presence race forwards.
6. Information is Power
Social networks provide an amazing amount of information. Use all the information at your disposal to try and get the best results from your social media. This comes down to testing and analyzing the information that you get.
If the follow, re-tweet or like results are poor, it could be that your calls to action are wrong, or badly placed. You have to constantly tweak your communication strategy. Use the information that you glean from responses, and from other people in the industry, and take a proactive approach to your social media.
7. Content Development; Making Time for It
It’s crucial that you make enough time to develop good quality content, not just for your social media, but for the locations that you are pointing people to.
They say that content is king; but it’s far more important than that.
Even if you do have superb quality content you need to ensure that you have people interacting with it, talking about it, and sharing it. Spend a lot of time on your content and getting it right Then tweet it, share it on Facebook, and get it up on Linked-In.
8. Give Free Content and Become an Authority
You have to have an attitude of content investment. By giving free content away to other people for their resources and their websites, you will become an authority in your field.
By developing a reputation for offering good quality content, you’ll soon build a trusted brand and have people coming to you to ask for comments, statistics, and information. When you get to this stage, your brand development and social media presence will skyrocket.
9. Be Consistent with Content Development
Many people have an exciting phase where they start developing content, but soon it starts to become a chore. You should ensure that you are consistently developing content for your social media, for dissemination and for your blog and website.
You should have a schedule and designated people to develop engaging content that will keep people coming back. Don’t just ad hoc it, make sure you have a comprehensive plan and strategy. Make it exciting and always keep it fresh!
10. Assess the Data that You Get
The responses that you get through social media, and through your online forms, should be analyzed to see where the conversions are coming from. Then you know where to spend your time. If you realize that you have a particularly strong channel then work out why.
Is there something you’re saying that is striking a chord with a certain demographic?
Would it work on a different social media platform?
By understanding the data, you will increase your social power.
11. Make Your Post Snazzy
If you have boring post on your website and humdrum, Facebook messages, you won’t build a following. People want to be inspired and excited and so you need to ensure that you do this through your content development; capture interest and if needs be shock your customers into engaging with you.
12. Interface with Followers Everywhere
It’s crucial that you don’t get over fixated on one social media platform. Diversify you social media efforts and also advertise your social media pages in traditional media. Add them to your e-mail signature, talk to people about your social media, and develop followers when you are networking in person; not just online. Become a social media guru.
13. Get Talking with People through the Socials
It’s important to be in tune with what’s going on in your industry so that you can be productive and start conversations. By knowing what’s going on and focusing on other people’s questions and ideas, you’ll be much better able to engage with people and build a friendship with them. By building friendships, you’ll build followers, and followers will become customers.
14. Test Content Promotion Strategies
It’s important to try out different strategies and split-test them so that you know what works and what doesn’t. You can then break down the different components of each strategy to ensure that you understand the exact facets of the marketing that work for your target clientele.
In many industries an e-book promoting your industry and your services is a great way of developing a following. In other industries it won’t work at all.
15. Develop Awesome Content
When you are developing your content you should always ensure that you are proud of the finished product. Have it go through several hands before it’s published so that it is proofread and sanity-checked several times. Make it interesting, informative, and authoritative. You have to take time and do significant research to produce good quality material, and your commitment will set you apart from the rest.
When you’re developing blog posts they should be longer than most, more interesting than most, and have good info-graphics.
16. Think Podcast, Images, Graphs, and Stats
When you’re developing content, and pointing to it on your social media, don’t just think about the textual side of the content. You really can enhance your offering by making it more functional, attractive and informative through graphs, statistics, images, cartoons, and anything else you can think of. Again, you’ll set yourself apart if you go the extra mile.
17. Target Your Content
It’s not good enough these days to develop generic content for the industry. You have to target specific demographics and individuals in order to develop a significant following. You can even develop content for a specific business if they are going to promote you in a certain way. Engage with the people in your industry and develop content that will appeal to their followers.
18. Be Positive and Motivational
As we’ve seen, people want to be lead, inspired and motivated in today’s world. Your content should therefore tick these boxes. Sometimes, it’s not good enough to give the same opinion; sometimes you have to stick your neck out and really stand out from he crowd.
Leadership is about making tough decisions and people are motivated when you engage in a committed way. You can also use media such as videos, music, to inspire and involve your followers.
Of course, make sure that you are communicating in line with the corporate strategy of your organization.
19. Choose Keywords and Use Them
You should have a strategic plan for the development of a keyword list and you should be constantly evolving this list to ensure that it is right for your demographics. Review your list against the conversions that you’re getting you can focus your strategy on the right terms. Use the keywords in your social media blog posts, and other content, in order to attract the people you’re looking for.
20. Use Different Delivery Media
People are looking for content in all different places. You should consider at what stage you want to interact with your visitors and get to them at the right time. There’s no point trying to sell someone a house when they’re looking for the buildings and contents insurance. They have probably already bought the house.
You need to consider the processes that people go through and then hunt them out early in the cycle of the sale.
21. Get Social Media on Your E-mail
A great way to promote your social media is to have good icons and images in your e-mail signature. Have a call to action that encourages people to connect, and perhaps even have a competition.
Some companies will have a prize draw after they reach a certain number of followers on different social media. This may be appropriate; it may not, but be creative and definitely use your e-mail signature.
22. Gather E-mail Addresses
It’s very easy these days to have an opt in e-mail sign up on your website. This can be a great way to develop a following, and encourage these people on to your social media, where you can interact in a richer and more regular way.
23. Set Goals for Your Social Media
The majority of businesses that jump on their social media do not have any set down goals. It’s important to plan your strategy, but also to understand where you want to be at a certain point in time in the future. A goal is just a dream with a date on it. So be specific and commit to achieving your social media goals.
Breakdown your goals into bite sized chunks and into specific daily activities. Then make sure that you do them. If you haven’t got the time, delegate or outsource to others. You should have a team of people that will ensure that your strategy moves forward and doesn’t fall down due to lethargy, lack of manpower, or lack of motivation.
Is your company doing enough with social media? Do you have clear goals? Do you have senior people responsible for your social media presence?
No policy equates to planning to fail.