Getting The Most Out Of Social Media Marketing
Using social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest (The big 4 of the plethora of social media options out there) are excellent ways of marketing your small business.
The Goal Is To Get Leads
You’ve heard me say it before, The goal of all advertising is to get leads. It is the only job of advertising. Once those leads are at your website, store, rummage sale or what have you, it’s up to the next system to turn them into prospects, customers and eventually fans!
Mass advertising is very expensive. Even if you narrow your target audience as much as possible, often mass advertising misses the target and lands on deaf ears. It is the small percentage of people who respond to the mass advertising that we are interested in. The leads. It is much more economical to advertise to a small group of people who are absolutely interested in your business, than thousands or millions of people who may not care at all
Don’t expect your social media ad to sell your products
It’s important to have realistic expectations. Your social media posts should be interesting enough that people want to learn more about you. One way to encourage that is with a free offer.
As small business owners, or entrepreneurs you are concerned about cash flow. It’s important to keep advertising in perspective. Social networks will help you reach your potential customers.
Give It Away
Giving away quality information helps to turn prospects into leads by giving them an opportunity to raise their hand and indicate interest in your business.
Here are some guideline tips that your give-a-way should follow:
- The content should help build a credible reputation for your business
- Be related to your core business.
- It wouldn’t make sense for a plumber to give away a cake recipe, but it would make sense for the plumber to give away a free informational guide on smart technology in regard to plumbing fixtures.
- Allow for capturing of the recipient’s information
- The most valuable thing in business is information. To allow downloading of your content, require the recipient to provide you with as much information as they’re comfortable giving. After all, the whole point of this give-a-way is to narrow the focus of our marketing efforts. We’ll be able to do that by marketing to this specific group of people next time.
- Drive traffic to your website or blog
Specific Actions To Take
Here are some of the most basic steps a small business or entrepreneur can take to get more followers and reach them more effectively.
- Use your social media account’s header image to draw attention to your free offer
- Pin a post to the top of your facebook and twitter profiles that encourage viewers to sign up to get your freebie
- Use targeted Facebook and Twitter advertising to reach an audience you think will have an interest in your free offer.
- Be consistent with your brand
- Use logos, colors and fonts that are consistent
- Keep your business and personal social media accounts separate
- If you chose to include personal, political or religious posts on your business page, there may be consequences. You’re free to do so, but not free of the consequences
- Make your social media pages easy to find. Don’t get overly creative with abbreviations or silly names that differ from your brand
- When creating content to share, keep your audience in mind
- Create an avatar of the target audience you are talking to
- What would they want to know?
- What is the most common question you get? That’s a good place to start with free information
- Consider timing
- Inappropriate timing can ruin a post, while good timing can be a huge benefit
- Be sensitive to what’s going on in the communities of your target audience. Is a word or phrase that would have been acceptable yesterday offensive today?
- Plan ahead
- Brainstorm with your team while studying a calendar
- Consider holidays
- School vacations
- Brainstorm with your team while studying a calendar
How much paid advertising you can do will depend on your financial resources and will affect your success. Networking is usually free. Asking friends, family, contacts and groups to post and share your content is an alternative that works in limited ways.
Make Small Adjustments
Use the tracking tools supplied with your advertising method. It will be difficult to know beforehand what reasonable goal expectations should be, but after some experimenting, you will have some good information that you can use to compare results to.
When testing ad campaigns, make small adjustments and re-test. Think of it as a process of elimination. If changing a single key element in your demographic choices by small amounts decreases the response to the same ad, then you can revert back to your previous settings and make another adjustment.
It’s tempting to want to make drastic changes with each ad campaign. Avoid it if you can. A major benefit of online advertising platforms is the nearly instant tracking information you have available and therefore the tremendous potential for minor adjustments and strategic success.
Engage your Prospects
When someone from your target audience steps forward and clicks like or begins following your page, they have self-identified as a prospect. That means, they’re interested…a little. Not enough to request free information, but interested. Not enough to spend money with you, but interested.
Keep the community you’ve created interested by posting regular and relevant information to them. Set a schedule, use a calendar and promote, promote, promote!
There are two tools I use that will help you engage more easily
Canva – Will help you create professional designs extremely quickly.
Buffer – Will allow you to schedule content to post to your social media pages using a calendar and timeline you choose. Canva has recently introduced a scheduling feature to their system, but I felt the calendar was clunky and not as intuitive as Buffer.