Whether you’re a huge multinational company with offices in several regions or a woman selling delicious cupcakes made in your kitchen, you can use social media marketing to actualize your potential. If you want social media to work for you, rather than against you, there are some basic principles to keep in mind.
- Define purpose and track results: What is the main purpose of your social media marketing effort? Is it to build a long-term, brand-loyal, customer base or is it to minimize costs or is it to maximize immediate sales? Once you have defined the purpose of your social media marketing clearly, then, you can start tracking results and measuring performance against the goal. Tracking results not only helps you assess whether your goals are being met but also helps achieve those goals. For example, let’s assume that you want to increase sales and find out that most of your productive leads are coming through Facebook advertising. You divert more marketing dollar to Facebook. You also use a keyword level transcription report to find out which words appeal to your target audience. Your future Facebook targeted ads can then focus on these specific keywords for optimizing lead conversions.
- Listen to others and don’t over-sell: Find out who your customers are and then actively listen to their conversations. For example, if you bake delicious cakes, then find and join local groups visited by your target audience. If you overhear someone asking for information about where to buy a good cake for a birthday party, tactfully join a conversation and offer your product. Highlight how you can tailor-make your product and preferably share some ideas and pictures of cakes that you have sold in the past. Try to offer something extra for this special occasion. People value genuine solutions to their real problems more than direct sales from an unknown person.
- Right Timing: Would you be more receptive to a discount message that is received in the middle of the night or would you be more receptive if the message is received when you are about to purchase the product? Right timing can make a significant difference in the potential consumer’s reaction to the ad. A call tracking report can tell you what time of the day you receive the highest number of calls and if you combine this information with the time taken on average between a click and a call, then you can time your social media ad appropriately. A clear call to action button displayed clearly on your Facebook page would be a good idea if you want to ensure quick conversions.
- Set a time limit: It is very easy to get lost on social media platforms so setting a time limit for yourself, for example, one hour a day for social media activity, may be a good idea. If this is not done then you may end up diverting time away from your core task and neglecting other aspects of your business. An hour a day will get much better results than five hours over a weekend.
- Build Relationships: Social media should be a complement to, and not substitute for, social interaction with your clients. People are not likely to share impersonal messages about a company’s vision or philosophy. However, if you host an event, invite your clients, post interesting pictures and tag relevant people in them, then you are using social media to your advantage.
- Use Social Media to engage with your audience and to build brand loyalty
- Listen attentively and communicate as a problem solver.
- Timing is key. So use your discounts judiciously.
- Manage your time on Social Media effectively. An hour a day keeps time-waste away!
- Face-to-face beats Facebook! Make time for personal interaction.