“Social media is about the people, not about your business. Provide for the people and the people will provide for you” -Matt Goulart
If you are in any kind of business, you would know that it thrives on advertising–any kind of advertising. However, with the evolution of digital media, we have reached a new pinnacle in marketing through social media–the premier platform for promoting your business. With this new and fresh frontrunner, it has transformed the way entrepreneurs would campaign for their businesses. Today, with social media marketing on the rise, Scott Cook may have the right sentiments as regards branding by stating that a brand is no longer what we tell the customer it is–it is what customers tell each other it is. Now that you are aware of this, you may be asking yourself either one of these two questions:
1.) What type of social media marketing should I be doing?
2.) How are savvy businesses harnessing the potential of social media in finding more customers, boost their reputations and effectively increase their sales?
Well, here are the core seven essentials that will effectively reshape your social media marketing into something that will deliver results–regardless of what your business is and where your business is situated.
1.) Get your home base started
Your website functions as your home base and it is essentially a domain you own from which you control the user experience. Everything from the contents feature to the site design and user interface is within your control. In a sense, this is where you showcase what you have and that you do know your stuff so producing riveting and high-quality content is crucial. Make sure your contents are not only a compelling read, but they should be able to demonstrate your expertise in a congenial and accessible manner that would draw out an audience. Your home base is generally where your aesthetics would appeal to your audience, so make sure you have a sleek, professional and smart design (Remember, first impressions matter!). It can be anywhere from stylish to quirky just make sure it is easy to navigate.
2.) Who is the face of your business?
If you want to build an online process, availing the services of a social media marketing in the Philippines or wherever is a good step. However, you can also do it on your own provided that you have the time. There are so many social media platforms that all it would need for you to do is to choose one. But whatever chosen platform you may have, always remember that it would need to associate it with a human face in order to make your social media marketing work. This provides you with an avenue to connect deeper with your audience and adopt a persona which invariably includes your thoughts, observations and even your emotions. Have a persona that is both social and informal but relevant and appropriate as well. Be friendly and genuine and most of all, sound like a human–a person your audience wants to be interacting with.
3.) Who else has your customers?
The meat in social networking platforms is the networking part–it allows to people to connect and hang out together. For individuals, this means building friendships and connections. But for business savvy people, this assists them in building relationships that would propel their services or products. Scour your chosen platform for people who already have a sizable audience and who incidentally would be an appropriate fit for your products or services. They can be anyone from authors to bloggers who have popular podcasts or several columns in mainstream media–these are the people you want to share and promote your content to. Cultivating professional relationships is very straightforward–just stick to the basics such as leaving intelligent comments on their blogs, link them from your content and just generally be a nice person.
4.) Pick a primary platform
Picking the right platform starts with knowing where your customers are as this is your way of reaching them. You may favor Twitter’s micro-blogging features, but if your customers while away in Facebook, you may need to reevaluate which platform is best for your business. However, if you are handling social media marketing rather well–venture out beyond your primary platform, but if you are starting out, it would be best if you stuck to one platform for the time being.
5.) Manage your time
It is imperative to know how much time and focus you should dedicate to social media because it could quickly turn a five-minute posting into a three hour scroll-fest. If you are unaware of how much time you should allocate for it, you are likely spending all of your time on social media–and too much of anything has never been good. If you do not want your productivity to take a dip, manage and be strategic when it comes to your social media posting. Do not allocate more time than necessary and if the situation calls for it, set an alarm to alert you that your allotted time for social media posting is up.
6.) Content should come first. Conversation is second
Though conversation likely delivers results–after all, there is something to be gained from chattering with potential customers all day and hoping someone will by something, but it is not an assurance. Be personable and be engaging with your customers as you please but if you are doing this all day, you are probably wasting time and getting nowhere. Spend majority of your time creating content and use it to give your customers information as regards what they would need to know in order to make a smart purchase. Do not just stop there, if you find relevant content which your audience incidentally finds valuable, share that as well and offer your own insights. This is how you can find a wider audience by making sure they have a riveting and compelling read every time they see a content from you. Consider this as the meat of the entire marketing strategy with the social media conversation as the spice.
7.) Keep SEO in mind
SEO is still not dead. Many people might be under the misguided impression that just because social media marketing is on the rise, they can disregard SEO altogether. But social media marketing complements SEO which means SEO is still a very vital factor in your marketing strategy. Search engines are still widely used and they would likely want to find the content that is a widely valued resource, so do not neglect your SEO!
Social media is not just an avenue for individual promotion as evidenced by the many businesses that have found success through their postings. You too, can find this same success by focusing on what matters: content and getting a useful message to a wide audience across. It can be very effective just know the crucial elements and apply it to your strategy and you are good to go.