Social media marketing is an invaluable and powerful weapon at your disposal, and if you do the right things and do them right, it can grow your followers, connect you with them, generate leads, drive traffic to your website and build brand awareness.
I can also tell you what social media marketing is not – occasionally posting information or telling people they should purchase your product or avail of your service is not helpful, educational or valuable.
Social Media Marketing is like this gigantic party and you are the host. You spend considerable time planning your party and sending out invites to guests but your party has flopped. Oh dear, why is that?
Fail to prepare, prepare to fail! Planning is pivotal with your goals in mind. To achieve your goals, ensure that you formulate a clear strategy. Perhaps you are looking to increase brand awareness or increase sales. Whatever your goals may be, I suggest you focus on one or two goals. Rule of thumb when it comes to goals is that they should be S.M.A.R.T i.e. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.
Check that guest list and know your party guests…after all you are inviting them to your party! The same applies to social media marketing…do your homework! What is social network your audience mostly spending time on? What do they like? What are their interests? What do they need help with and how can you help them? What type of content do they love most? Do they like videos, or photos, or infographics, or how to tips?
You don’t have to host several parties at once, you just have to host and be present at one party. The same rule applies for social media marketing…go to where your audience is. Ensure that you have the right message, take aim and fire at the right audience.
Successful companies in social media function more like entertainment companies, publishers or party planners than as traditional advertisers.” – Erik Qualman
Do your research, gather some intel and see how the other parties went down. Put on your trench coat and shades and prepare for some spying. Take a peek and see what your competitors are doing or have done with their social media marketing efforts. This gives you an idea of what works and what doesn’t for your own party.
Party Rules And Etiquette
As with any offline networking event, the same networking rules apply on social media. If you are going to the party and all you are doing is talking about yourself, expect to see some eyes rolling, some yawning and your guests to leave early. Can you imagine what they would be saying as they are leaving? ‘How lame and boring is this party’. ‘They would not shut up talking about themselves, I could not get one word in’. ‘Let’s just go, thank god we never have to go back’.
You want a fun party that never ends, one that is talked about and shared nonstop. When posting on social media ensure that your content is valuable, entertaining and educational. Don’t just post for the sake of posting. Share worthy content that is compelling and engaging.
Provide for the people and the people will provide for you.” – Matt Goulart
If you provide your audience with valuable and educational content, they will return and share the love. They will share it with their followers who will share it with their followers. You catch my drift here. It is called a ‘social network’ for a reason. Who does not love a good story at a party? Engage your party guests with some engaging stories!
I’ll also let you in on a little secret…this helps your search ranking. Content shares give you more visibility and signals to Google that your content is relevant, thus, boosting your search rankings. Pretty sweet eh! But wait…your content must compel your audience to share it.
Google only loves you when everyone else loves you first.” – Wendy Piersall
Consistency is key here, ensure you are consistent with your social media posts. Don’t be generic and humanize your social media posts and your brand. Do not fear creativity, the only limit is your creativity! Share entertaining and funny posts…inject some LOLs into your content. I should point out that this does not mean you should try too hard or fake it till you make it!
Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.” – Oscar Wilde
Be authentic, be yourself….your audience can smell bull from a mile away. Can you imagine what your guests would be saying at your party? *dramatic sniff* ‘what is that smell?’ ‘Do you smell that?’
Oh and one last thing… I don’t know if you are aware of this but the conversation is a two-way street. The art of conversation applies to social media. Listen to your customers, interact with them, strike compelling conversations, reply to them, take care of them and give a virtual helping hand with educational content. Don’t make it me, me, me all the time if you don’t want your audience to go, go, go! Listening and engaging in conversation is invaluable for gathering feedback and information from your audience…this helps you understand your party guests better and what gets them in the partying mood. You can then adjust your social media marketing to make it more relevant for your next party.
Originally published on Chop Dawg Blog