May be Twitter?
Or may be Pinterest is your goldmine for bringing new business?
No Matter what social platform you’re making use of to market your business, there are some commonalities that all social platforms share. Once you know and apply those best practices, your return on investment will improve, and you’ll be able to allocate more resources to social media marketing.
Here are 5 social media marketing best practices that will help you improve your ROI!
1- Integrate Social Media Marketing With Your Overall Marketing And Business Strategy
Social media marketing isn’t a standalone practice!
It should be fully integrated into not just your overall marketing strategy, but also your business strategy.
Why, you ask?
Because if you take a step back and ask yourself why exactly are you using social media, the answer should not be because you like it, or because it’s cool to be on Facebook or Pinterest, or because someone else said that you should be on social media!
One way or the other, we’re all using social media to get MORE BUSINESS!
Whether you’re using it to learn more about your prospects or to raise awareness for your products and services, it all falls down into getting MORE BUSINESS whether directly or indirectly!
And how are you going to know if you’re getting more business from social media if you don’t have S.M.A.R.T business goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound).
Social media should also be integrated into your overall marketing strategy. I wrote a post a while back entitled “Social Media Marketing Is An Integrated Strategy, Not The Holy Grail”. You should definitely check it out to learn how you integrate it with your overall business and marketing strategy.
2- Be Active Rather Than Passive
Unlike many other marketing mediums, social media isn’t a set it and forget it type of medium!
What are you doing to stay on top of your prospects’ minds?
If you’re not constantly asking questions, providing value, helping prospects, replying to requests…etc, then you’re not using social media in its appropriate form.
They say that one drop after another and the valley will get flooded. Let me know if you’ve never heard of this before
It’s minor actions that seem irrelevant to most and that you do each day that will land you that major media appearance, big client or whatever opportunity that will literally move your business to the next level.
It’s been proven many times that prospects need multiple exposures to your messages before they decide to take action whether to contact you, buy from you…etc.
The previous concept applies to all inbound marketing mediums and not just social media. The more small seeds you plant, the bigger the harvest you’re going to reap. You can call it the butterfly effect, the “Slumdog Millionaire” effect or anything you want to call it. The fact remains the same. It’s a powerful and reliable principle!
3- Engage Rather Than Sell
Social media marketing lies in the “Not So Direct” approach to selling.
I mean by that, the more you strictly promote your products, the more your prospects will get annoyed and leave.
That doesn’t mean it’s impossible to make a sale directly from social media, because most eCommerce businesses do promote their products on their Facebook pages and Pinterest boards, and many are doing great in terms of direct sales!
However, the messaging, the tone, the type of content…etc is what really matters when it comes to selling on social media. You can’t just post on your Facebook page that you have this awesome product which you want your audience to check it out!
The right way to go on social media is to build excitement for your product first so people get curious about it. Then you share interesting stories/case studies of people who have used it and liked it. You can also run some contests/sweepstakes to spice up your promotion even further and get more eyeballs to your product. You can also set up groups, do webinars or Google hangouts if you want more engagement with your fans and followers. By the time you launch your product; many people will jump on board because they now know you, trust you and want to buy from you.
Also, if you want more conversion for your product or service, then email is a great way to do that. You should offer something of value to your fans and followers in exchange for their emails. Let’s say it’s a free gift of some sort (coupon, ebook, video series…etc). You then nurture those relationships with interesting, engaging, problem solving and meaningful content, and at the end, many of those people who you would’ve never converted else how, end up buying your product!
4- Consistency Is Key
As I’ve told you before, social media isn’t a “Set It and Forget It” approach.
You can’t blast your followers with great engaging content today and take a break a week after.
We live in a crazy word today that if I ask you what you had for breakfast, you’ll scratch your head and think for a while before you give me the answer, and that is if you happen to have a good memory
The rule of thumb to social media success is whenever your prospect thinks of your industry, you should always come up at the top of the list.
You know how to make a room for your brand into your prospects minds?
Sure you need to be unique, creative, interesting…and all those stuff that will set you apart from the competition.
However, those things won’t work unless you show your prospects how unique, creative and interesting your brand is on a consistent basis.
5- Track Your Performance
This is where all of your efforts come into judgment!
The only way you can improve your performance on social media or any other medium is by tracking what worked and what didn’t.
Unless you do that, you’ll probably be wasting lots of time on tactics you think they work, but they don’t.
Unlike many think, there are many sophisticated tools in the market today that can give you exactly which tactic is contributing to your business’s bottom-line and which isn’t.
However, if you’re just starting out, you should begin with the insights that the social platforms you’re using provide. You can also make use of the most basic form of tracking by monitoring clicks and seeing how many have translated into leads or sales. I use Google Analytics for such tracking, and so far it’s been really flawless in terms of tracking what converts and what doesn’t.
As you’ve noticed above, social media is always about people and never about the tools. You could have an arsenal of super sophisticated tools that can do all sorts of different stuff, but it won’t make a difference in your business if “people” aren’t at the center of your strategy. Your mindset should be clocked along with people’s needs and problems. If you maintain that simple principal, social media will be the best thing to ever happen to your business
Image Credit: Alan O’Rourke