Social media marketing is used in just about every business plan today as a part of their brand awareness and growth strategy, because it is a highly cost effective way to target a relevant customer audience. But only if you have the foundations in place to convert the leads into sales.
Here is five key areas of social media that need to be in place in order to succeed at reaching your business goals.
What do you want to achieve from social media marketing?
Many businesses set out to promote an event or offer on social media without even thinking about what is the result they want within a certain time frame. For example if you are running a quarterly campaign then break down and set conversion goals for each month to track the success. Without this how do you know if you need to tweak the offer, abort it on one channel or all, or even consider adjusting the ad spend to increase/decrease the reach of audience.
Without knowing what the ideal end result is, you can fall into the trap of wasting a lot of time and money on social media marketing because no goal towards growing your business is set.
Delegate responsibility and accountability
In order to achieve digital success, it is vital to utilise the right people with the relevant skills. This means you know who is accountable for what progress, success or failures related to your social media marketing. To assist in developing an overall business marketing plan will you use a social media strategist to identify where best to use social media marketing? If your campaigns require website sales pages, email marketing or copy and image creation for social adverts, will it be outsourced to a team of skilled people you manage or be the responsibility of one agency to manage? To help you identify the right consultants or agency do not be afraid to ask for case studies and examples so you have confidence in investing in a team experienced at developing and managing social media campaigns. It is you investing in them to grow your business after all.
Claim and Optimise Your Social Media Profiles
Quite often businesses will only create the social media profiles they plan to use, only to expand onto different platforms at a later date, and realise someone else has already claimed their recognised URL identity. To protect your brand and ease of being easily found in Google and social searches create at the very least the top social sites. Then provide in the descriptions, on dormant social accounts, a link to where you are most active for people to connect with you – or promote your sales or opt in offer. Even the big brands do this to avoid the pain of claiming trademarked accounts at a later date.
Utilise all the functions of social media accounts as best you can. Facebook has a Sign Up or Shop Now button and tabs to promote events and services so use them, and be sure to keep them updated with your latest opt in or sales offer if this is part of your social media campaign.
Include your website as a social media marketing tool
Most businesses use social media marketing to send traffic back to their website to do 3 business growth activities:
- build authority and brand awareness by promoting blog articles
- expand customer database by promoting an opt in offer to receive emails
- increase revenue by promoting products, an offer, discount or bonus package
By ensuring you integrate your website with your social media presence you will convert more visitors, and therefore increase the success of your social media campaigns. For example if your website footer promotes your opt in and/or sales funnel offer, then your blog readers will see it at the end of articles. If your emails not only promote your latest blog article but client case studies, and latest promotion or event, then it too will more likely convert more sales. If you have social share buttons on article and offer pages then the growth of your brand and database will be greater.
What value would you put on your ‘social networth’
Much of the success from any social media marketing will come down to the networking relationships you have developed – online and offline. These are the people you can count on to help you start to expand your brand, spread the word about your offer, share your blog insights. The more time you invest in developing and nurturing relationships within other social media business spaces and groups the more influence you can create. The more organic your engagement, the more relevant social advertising platforms will see your content and the less they will charge you for promoting it. Never underestimate the value of investing time in others, but be strategic that the activity is relevant to your business marketing goals.
Not every social media campaign is successful – it is a trial and error adventure which is also influenced by current marketing and popular trends, but with these 5 foundations set in place, your social media marketing is more likely to succeed in helping you reach your business growth goals.