Why should you consider using social media for marketing?
Mobile phones, the Internet, Facebook, and Google (there are plenty of others) are dramatically affecting the way we do business. Like it or not, business is becoming more social, thanks in part to the emergence of platforms and technologies I just listed.
And, there are more showing up all the time…ever heard of Pinterest?
Marketing with social media is no longer a new fad, it is sewn deeply into the fabric of present day marketing. Social media icons for Twitter, Facebook and You Tube are almost as common as copyrights and brand logos these days.
Are social media and marketing compatible?
The advent of the tools and technologies previously mentioned have significantly changed the way consumers buy, discuss and think about products and services.
Traditionally, marketers defined a target market, decided on a relevant offer and launched a media campaign to persuade a consumer to buy their product. This broadcast approach is no longer viable. Now, consumers are able to conduct their own research and ask for recommendations and suggestions from others.
Merging social and marketing is an increasingly effective and efficient way to generate leads. According to Hub Spot, companies that blog generate more leads:
- B2C companies that blog generate 88% more leads
- B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads
And, these leads are less expensive. In fact, inbound marketing costs 62% less per lead than traditional, outbound marketing. (Source: Hubspot)
Social Media marketing plan
Often brands enter the social media perspective driven by a tactic. An executive will announce “We need to be on (fill in the platform of the day).” With so many new technologies, it’s easy to get distracted or feel paralyzed, depending on your approach to technology.
First, understand how your audience is using social media. Before you decide they are not, think about more basic social behaviors, like search, for example.
Then ask a few questions like:
- How does my company view technology?
- How can we adapt our existing processes to accommodate social media?
Here are 4 ways to put social in your marketing:
1) Take full advantage of search strategies. Make sure your business is registered locally. Read Why local search engine marketing is important for more insight.
2) Optimize your website – make sure your web site is coded to ensure that consumers will be able to find it. Organic search can be very powerful; however, you may want to hire a professional to help you discover the appropriate key words and phrases to help you stand out.
3) Listen – Chris Brogan has talked a great deal on this topic. He recommends you go to Google and type “grow big ears” into the search field; it’s good advice.
4) Empower colleagues, especially those who are on the front lines. Social is about people interacting with people. Social marketing is not just another campaign or tactic; it’s a different way of doing business. Make sure colleagues know what is being promised to consumers. Listen to feedback from all stakeholders, then take action.
Don’t allow the overwhelming amount of choices to prevent you from starting the journey. If you haven’t already, start with the basics and continue to build. For your business, using social media for marketing may not mean a Facebook page or a Twitter account, but you will be wise to incorporate social into your marketing.