Tapping the Power of Social Media Marketing
Social media ha? d?n? wonders f?r sm?ll business advertising. Print ads, radio ads, ?nd television ads ar? effective, but th? cost c?n blow ? huge hole ?n y?ur budget w?th n? guarantee ?f success. Spend y?ur entire advertising budget ?n ? traditional media campaign, ?nd ? poorly-designed ad ?r ? bland slogan c?n wash y?ur money r?ght d?wn th? drain.
Social media, ?n th? oth?r hand, i? free. And it’s ev?rywhere. To b? clear, we’re talking ab?ut th?ngs lik? Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., plu? industry-specific sites - ?ny friend-finding, spread-the-word-type site th?t all?ws y?u t? create ? profile ?nd promote y?ur brand. These virtual coffee shops c?n b? ? godsend t? th? sm?ll business owner, ?nd it only takes ? single post t? becom? th? late?t buzz. Of course, random posts g?n?rally don’t f?nd much ?f ?n audience. To maximize y?ur showcase, it’s imp?rt?nt t? hav? ? plan.
Don’t limit your??lf t? ? single platform. Create ? company profile ?n ?ll avail?bl? sites, ?nd tie ev?ryth?ng t?g?ther. For example, announce ?n Facebook th?t you’ll b? attending ? conference ?t such-and-such, th?n live-Tweet y?ur enthusiasm thr?ugh?ut th? event. If s?m?one i? foll?wing y?ur company ?n Twitter, chances ar? they’ll b? int?r?sted ?n wh?t y?u learn ?nd w?ll re-tweet t? other?. Then y?u b?come th? company w?th th? cool insider knowledge ab?ut th? up-and-coming thing? ?n th? doodad industry.
Make it Easy
Your company sh?uld alre?dy h?ve ? website, ?nd y?ur website sh?uld hav? ? blog. Each page ?f y?ur site ?nd blog sh?uld als? h?ve th? v?rious "Like" buttons f?r Facebook, StumbleUpon, Reddit, Twitter, etc. It’s s? easy f?r som?on? t? s?e someth?ng int?re?ting ?nd click ? button - suddenly, y?ur page ju?t f?und ? f?w hundr?d n?w viewers. If th??e buttons aren’t there, th? only w?y t? share i? t? copy ?nd paste th? address ?f th? site, log int? Facebook, ?nd m?ke ? b?g post ab?ut it. People won’t d? it, they’ll ju?t move ?n. If y?u w?nt people t? advertise y?u f?r free, ?t l??st m?ke it easy f?r th?m.
Get Friends ?nd Followers
The b??t social media strategy i? useless if y?ur mom i? th? only on? reading it. Friend ?nd follow ev?ry?n? y?u kn?w. Some companies actu?lly sell friends ?nd followers, but th?r? i? ? question a? t? h?w real th?se people ar? - if y?ur brilliant posts ar? g??ng t? ? neglected account, th?y ar? useless. A go?d w?y t? populate y?ur list i? t? put y?urself out there, ju?t l?ke ?n real life. Comment ?n some?ne else’s post, ?nd put links t? y?ur v?riou? pages ?n th? signature ?f y?ur email (if y?u don’t alr??dy h?v? ? custom signature, g?t one).
Don't Be Spammy
Now th?t y?u hav? ?ll the?? friends, don’t turn th?m ?ff by advertising 24/7. Don’t c?m? acr?ss a? ? constant ad - l?t people se? th?t there’s ? real person b?h?nd the?? posts, ?nd th?t th? real person ju?t h?ppen? t? m?ke s?me r??lly awesome thingies. Sure, it’s fine t? post ab?ut upcoming specials, n?w product debuts ?nd such, ?nd y?u d?finitely sh?uld. But al?? post normal everyday th?ngs. Just check ?n t? s?y hi, ?r complain ab?ut h?w thi? humid weather i? slowing production ?f th? whooziwhatsits. Don’t forget holiday posts - y?u sh?uld always, alway? remember t? wi?h y?ur friends ?nd followers ? happy holiday. It put? y?u out front a? ? nice company, on? th?t remembers "what’s r??lly important". If y?u c?n tie it int? y?ur sale ?n thingies, ?ll th? b?tter.
Don’t Make it All About You
Yes, th? p??nt ?f ?ll th?s i? t? promote y?ur business, but y?u don’t w?nt t? b? s??n a? th? semi-spam wh? occasionally h?? g??d sales. You w?nt t? b? s?en a? ?n industry insider who’s m?r? concerned ab?ut disseminating industry news ?nd knowledge, ?nd ju?t accepts th? added exposure a? ? s?d? benefit - ?n fact, only ab?ut 20% ?f y?ur posts sh?uld b? dir?ctly ab?ut y?ur product. Re-tweet inter??ting thing? fr?m oth?r people, post links t? ? talented up-and-comer related t? y?ur field.
You m?y b? try?ng t? corner th? bobble market, but y?u c?me acro?? ? y?ung artist wh? designs custom bobble-keepers. Post it (with pictures) - h? g?t? exposure ?nd feels flattered f?r attracting th? int?r?st ?f such ? highly-esteemed bobble-maker. You g?t h?? esteem, ?nd hi? attention - wh?n y?ur spring collection debuts, h? w?ll dutifully re-post it ?nd you’ll reap th? benefit ?f h?? followers. Not t? mention th? f?ct th?t y?ur oth?r friends ?nd followers w?ll s?e y?u a? ? company th?t supports rising talent, ?nd ? source ?f ?ll thing? bobble.
Social media i? m?r? th?n ? workplace distraction. In fact, y?u kn?w th?t employee wh? alw?y? se?m? t? b? ?n Facebook dur?ng office hours? Appoint h?r head ?f y?ur social media campaign. Social media i? ? powerful tool th?t us?? word-of-mouth (the m??t effective marketing tool ever) ?nd takes it t? ? global level, ?nd it’s free. Not t?king advantage ?f it m??ns you’re leaving huge swathes ?f potential customers out ?n th? cold.