Making Social Media Work for Your Business
It is quite common to read that “Social media marketing is the future” on marketing forums. However, many business owners still believe that it’s just a passing wave (a fad) or an excuse to waste even more time on social networks.
The truth is, like any other form of marketing, social media is not just something you can try “for a day or two”, and expect to see results. Real people are on the social networks, and it takes time (and some strategic planning) to make this area of marketing work for you. This purpose of this post is to give you a simple and nice layout of a few strategies that you can apply to launch a successful social campaign for your business.
4 Important Components of Social Media Marketing
1. Defining your marketing objectives
Why? Why are you marketing in the first place – what is the purpose? You want to be more specific than “to make more money”. You need to think “1 step before the money”. Is this marketing campaign’s purpose to generate more leads? Or maybe it is to bring more eyeballs to a certain offer (traffic)? It could also be to get people to spread the word about your business (offering a free gift in exchange of a “Like”, for example).
The good thing about social media is that nearly everyone has a social account. This means that if you want to maximize the reach of your social media marketing campaign, you can include your fan page or handle links in your other ads (and people will relate to them).
You can also completely replace one of your marketing outlets completely with social media. For instance if you usually spend $250 on newspaper advertising, you can invest that money in hiring experts in social media marketing – they will take care of the fan page creation, FB advertising, PPC, content creation, managing the entire social account etc.
3. Know exactly who your buyer is
Does your target market consist of 45 year-old single males who have trouble with dating? Or is it of 16 year-olds who love gaming? Is your ideal buyer someone who wouldn’t mind paying hundreds of dollars for a solution to his problem?
Age.Gender.Spending power.3 important criteria (among many others) that you can begin with. This helps in giving a direction to your social campaigns.
Once you know your target audience, you can offer them something that they really want, and communicate the benefits of your product in their jargon. This is the difference between a good enough product (and campaign), and an excellent one.
Just to illustrate this point: A 23 year-old male interested in gaining weight is more likely to respond to “Pack On Slabs Of Rock-Hard Muscles In 7 Days Or Less!” than “This product will help your body increase your muscle cells’ intracellular fluid” (which might work for a biology student, if that’s who you want to target!).
4. Deliver content
Content – articles, pictures, videos – is what gets shared. NOT offers. So make sure to deliver good content (and wisely embed your offers in them). That’s pretty much all there is to say on that 4th component!
Give yourself at least 3 solid months of work to see if you can make this work for you or not. Once you have gone through components 1 – 3, all you are left with is content generation. You don’t have to create it all at once!
To be honest, you can get away with providing content just 2 or 3 times a week in most cases, but be consistent with your timing (for example every Monday and Thursday) so that your followers know when to come back for more of your stuff (and subtly, they will also be coming back for more of your offers).
The rest of the days you can do your research for the content you are going to create and interact with you fan-base by answering their questions or doing surveys. It’s social after all!
After 90 days, you will have enough data to know if it’s a good idea to keep social marketing as part of your advertising campaigns. From there, you can decide whether you want to deliver content more often, or try to throw in a couple of offers without any content (by then, you will have enough content out there for them not to see you as a “spammer”).
This is the proper way of doing it!