Catherine Campbell owns Bright Planning, a strategic marketing and PR firm that specializes in marketing strategies and plans based on a company’s specific development phase — start-up, middle year plateau or transitions, such as mergers and acquisitions. Campbell shares her insight on social media marketing.
(Photo courtesy of Catherine Campbell)
I hate social media. Do I have to use it in my marketing strategy?
It depends on how you answer the following three questions:
- Where does your audience hang out? If your audience is on Instagram, draw out an Instagram strategy. If your audience loves videos, buy some YouTube ads, create videos and give behind-the-scenes scoop using Periscope. If your audience is hanging out in LinkedIn groups, join some and contribute to the conversation. Bring your story to where they are and frame it so they cannot ignore it.
- Are you going to keep up the conversation on that platform? The worst thing you can do is join five social media sites to establish your company’s presence and then leave the profiles to rot. Create an editorial strategy to talk about helpful tips, articles, ideas surrounding your company. Write out your social media posts and use scheduling tools such as Hootsuite or Buffer to schedule them in advance so your social media efforts don’t become a time suck.
- Where does social media fall in your sales funnel? Typically, social media is a lead generation tool — it generates traffic to your website or a physical store. It is a catalyst, a mover, a shaker, a megaphone. If it is not moving people to your store or your website after a year of testing it, ditch it and try something new.
My competitors have thousands of followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. How do I get those kinds of numbers?
Followers do not translate to sales. It is better to have 100 people following you with 50 of them engaging and buying your stuff, than to have 1,000 people following you and only 16 of them buying. If you want to get followers, you have to hyper-focus your message. This takes patience, time, phenomenal customer service and quality products that support a specific lifestyle. It is all about the message. You need to craft a great story about how your product or service fits into your ideal customer’s way of life, something they could repeat daily to themselves, almost like a mantra. If you are not bettering or changing someone’s life in a specific and memorable way, you need to think carefully about what message your product is sending people.
This article was written by Robin D. Everson for Small Business Pulse