Social media can be a low-cost and high-powered marketing tool –if you are using proper form. The key to social media marketing success is not in the tools – it’s how you use the tools that yields results. Here are some simple steps to “pump up” your social media marketing efforts.
Raise the Social Media Bar ABOVE Your Business
Think about social media marketing like a large fitness center or gym. Just as a gym has lots of equipment to use, there are lots of social media options to choose from like Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest. A gym has tons of diverse people going in and out of it on a daily basis, just like social media. Although lots of people go to the gym, (like organizations using social media) the folks who have visible results are the ones using pro techniques.
To get results with social media, you need to have a clear goal or intention. Just like you have a goal when you go to the gym (whether it be maintaining fitness, losing weight, de-stressing, bulking up, or training for an athletic event) your intention for social media must be clear, not just to you but to your customers. People won’t follow you on Twitter, like you on Facebook or subscribe to your blog unless there is something meaningful to them content-wise. They need to understand why you are worth looking at, following, subscribing or liking. To raise the bar on your social media marketing, take the first step and raise the bar -define a theme that is “bigger” than your organization.
A theme communicates the value of subscribing to any type of social media, it shares the value of the content and it makes the voice of social media clear to your customers. A social media theme is not only helpful to create connections, but it also can help inspire content on days when you just don’t know what to post.
Great example: Counselor Linda Menesez works with women, helping them find greater happiness. Her blog and social media posts have a higher theme – talking about ways to have a deeper peace of mind, a more joyful spirit, and an abundant satisfaction with life. She also has beautiful graphics that are on brand and on purpose with her theme. The image to the left was posted on her Facebook page, sharing her blog post about Living In the Moment.
Pack Your Social Media With Nutrient-Rich Content
Just as a personal trainer will tell a client that they have to eat right in addition to exercising for optimal results, the same applies to social media marketing. You can go to the gym day after day, month after month, but if the form is not right, then you won’t get the results you want. Think of this when you are out on social media posting content. The act of doing it alone is not enough. You need to be doing it from a healthy foundation. Think of this as social media marketing from the inside-out.
Customers want to consume good content, plain and simple. Social media marketing isn’t about touting your organization; it’s about nourishing your current and prospective customer. Your tweets, YouTube videos, blog posts, Facebook updates and photos need to have value, support your values and be “on brand” with the voice of your organization.
What Do I Post On Social Media?
One of the biggest challenges in social media marketing is the question of “what content should I be posting?” The answer depends on your customers are, what content will connect with them and how you can differentiate yourself in the noisy social media landscape. When you take the first step and have a clearly defined social media strategy that has a theme bigger than your business, you will find it is much easier to create nutrient-rich content. Working under the umbrella of a theme gives you a focus, but also gives flexibility for varied content to keep things interesting. Content creation does not have to be a bunch of effort either. Later this month, I will give some tips to take some of the overwhelm out of the process.
Value-rich content needs to help customers, but it can be fun as well. Think of ways to entertain your social media contacts. Interview customers to celebrate the people who support you, share fun videos, retweet articles written by other writers that will interest your readers. Content doesn’t all have to come from you, you can share gems from other like-minded social media people and organizations (quote/credit them properly of course) that fall under your social media theme. Social media is widely used because it is fun – remember that content needs to not only be nutritious, it needs to be delicious too.
Stay Committed to Social Media
The last and final step to “pump up” your social media marketing is to stay committed to the process. Just like physical fitness requires ongoing upkeep, social media marketing does as well. The best way to stay committed is to have a social media management plan. Who is responsible for checking in on Facebook, Twitter, reviewing blog posts, writing, posting or following comments? Assign roles and responsibilities to yourself as well as your staff. Create weekly and monthly rituals. Simple things like posting a weekly quote that inspires your customers or sharing a video clip once a week or writing an educational blog post once a month can be woven into your social media marketing lifestyle. Customers need to know they can count on you to be a reliable participant in social media. A clear focus, value-rich contributions, and a committed schedule are three ways to pump up your time and effort.
Social media marketing can build your business in new wonderful ways. Like fitness, it takes effort, but with a healthy focus, it can be great insurance for the life of your marketing!
Here’s to happy, healthy marketing to help your organization stay wealthy!
Virtual Marketing Hugs!