In this post I will outline the benefits of social media marketing and 8 key ways in which you can set up your very own social media marketing strategy.
The digital age is well and truly upon us and there’s no getting away from the fact that digital marketing is fast becoming the most effective way to reach your clients.
This has posed a slight issue… most marketers are trying to market to the world like it’s 1980! There are so many ways not to do this, and social media is the most easily accessible form of digital marketing, yet the most underutilized.
I will elaborate on my point above… There are so many ways in which you can reach your potential audience, and social media has opened up the doors to billions of people who are your potential customers.
In 1980 the average attention span of a person was 20 minutes…today the average attention span of a person is… take a guess, you will be shocked at the answer.
9 Seconds is all you have to grab the attention of your target market and wow them. This is no mean feat, and with stats like these it’s easy to see how so many people fail to grasp how to do this correctly.
With little to no budget ANYONE can start engaging with people online, if you’ve got a slightly healthier advertising budget you can reach people in the thousands, if not millions… and it’s never been cheaper!
With social media platforms being so accessible, becoming a “social media marketing expert” has never been easier. There are a good handful of incredible marketers out there who specialize in social media platforms in particular however there are also a lot of very bad ones to.
Later on in this post I will list some incredible resources you can tap into that are owned by some real experts, some are friends, some are not but all of them have helped me in some way or another market via multiple social media platforms the right way.\
So what can you expect from this post…
1. The way to approach social media marketing as a business.
2. How to determine your goals.
3. How to choose the right platform.
4. Awesome tips to get you going…NOW.
5. Filling your social media calendar with AWESOME content.
6. Automating posts and schedules.
7. How to achieve real engagement from the right people.
8. Why you need to jab jab jab….jab jab jab…and then consider throwing a hook!
Let’s move onto the first point in the hit list…
1. The way to approach social media marketing as a business:
You are at a friends wedding… the room is full of people you have never met before…everyone is having a great time and you take this opportunity to get to know everyone.
You start talking to others as you feel the right thing to do is build a relationship with people as you have one common interest…the bride and groom.
The person sitting next to you on your table has caught your eye so you introduce yourself… She is a beautiful girl in her mid twenties who clearly takes pride in her appearance… Would you start with this line?
“Hi my name is Sam and I have an incredible new product that will enable you to have professional looking make up applied within 2 minutes, cutting on average 16:31 off the time it takes to get ready. Check out this sales page to find out more…”
The simple answer…HELL NO! She would not only think you were a sleazy sales man, she wouldn’t give you the time of day and the conversation would stop at “hi”.
In that situation any normal person would introduce themselves and take the time to get to know the other person, thus building a relationship. It’s only when you knew that person, their interests and what gets them excited would you attempt to make a sale.
It’s the age old saying…People buy from people they know, like and trust that comes to mind when telling that story, and it’s so true. People love to buy things but they hate to be sold to. So why would you disregard the social norms when engaging with people on social media?
Think of social media as the perfect place to entertain your clients and provide them with as much value as possible. People don’t visit their FaceBook feed to be sold to. They have come to be entertained or in some cases educated.
So your primary goal as a business is to build relationships with your customers. It has never been easier to stay tuned to your customer’s real needs. Platforms like FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat are where people go to vent their joys and frustrations.
You may be thinking why do I want to look out for people moaning online?
It’s these issues that tell you exactly what problems your customers face on a daily basis. This may have something to do with your services or products, or it may have something to do with life in general.
You need to take note of what the people are saying, it’s these key points that will highlight where you can start to provide solutions to their problems.
This is the answer to not selling to your clients, but solving their problems with products and services they will be queuing up to buy from you. You are letting them know that you understand them and their needs and happy to take the sting out of the issues they are facing right now.
There is one more crucial point we cannot fail to recognize… When someone truly helped you with an amazing product or service, and the customer service was amazing, did you tell anyone.
You bet you did! There’s no better pre frame to your company than a recommendation from a trusted friend or family member to your products and services. That is the best form of advertising there is…and it’s free.
So we have established you have to build relationships with people and not just sell them, but what are the best ways in which we can achieve this?
Let’s start here.
2. How to determine your goals:
You can take many approaches when setting your primary goals…
They can fall into different categories…
Brand Awareness…What does your brand say about you? You need to spend some time establishing what you want your brand to represent. Once you have established this you need to build that brand…
This can be achieved by regularly posting content. Don’t expect this to happen overnight though… Brands can take a lifetime to create and only a second to destroy, this is why it is crucial to stay true to your brand.
This is the primary way most brands and businesses utilize their social media accounts. There are only certain platforms this is suitable for, but given the right platform and audience, great content can literally go viral and launch brands overnight.
Lead Generation and customer acquisition…
This is where Gary Vaynerchucks “Jab, Jab, Jab Right Hook” comes into play. We have already established how social media is the platform to provide value to your customers and build relationships.
This is the jab part of the equation. The right hook comes when you occasionally drive that traffic back to a sales page or offer. You have to remember the mindset of the person who is scrolling through their news feed.
They are not in what you call a “buyer’s mindset”. For this reason alone you have to give them something that is going to enable you to build that relationship with them.
Once the trust is there and you have an offer that aligns with their needs, that’s when you hit them with the hook. Provide value first, and then present the sale.
This is a method that takes a lot longer to get the initial sale, but once you have cracked it you will have a life long customer.
3. How to choose the right platform…
Facebook: This is the largest social media platform in the world. It has to date (23-01-17) over 1.79 BILLION monthly active users. An active user is someone that has used the platform in the last 30 days. That figure is astonishing!
Facebook is great for building a brand, content distribution, advertising, lead generation and customer acquisition.
Twitter: Twitter is widely regarded as a dying platform. This could not be further from the truth. This is an incredibly effective way to share your content. The platform does not have as many features as Facebook but is perfect for the busy business owner wanting to share his (or her) message.
There are over 320 million monthly active users on Twitter, this is not a figure to be ignored and still provides a brilliant platform to share content with your customers and build a brand.
Instagram: Instagram is a visual platform that is perfect for the creative businesses out there. It is harder to direct traffic on Instagram, not impossible, but are difficult than the other platforms.
Where Instagram comes into its own is brand awareness. You can tell your brand’s story via images and capture the emotions of your customers incredibly well on this platform.
There are over 600 million active monthly users on Instagram, which is amazing, however it does pose a problem for the lazy out there.
You have to produce great content to gain real traction. You can’t just throw up any old pic and wait for people to flock to your pages. All the users of this platform see are images so you have to provide something really cool for them to take notice.
I wrote an article on the top 21 influencers on Instagram and what they are doing to get such an incredible following.
P.S. these top 21 influencers share 193 million of the 600 million active users on the entire platform… it’s worth checking out what they are doing so different.
This is the perfect platform to build relationships with your customers. This is the place to put your brand out there for everyone to see warts and all.
You can give your customers a behind the curtain view of your company, products and upcoming promotions. Remember the age old saying quoted earlier.
“People buy from people they know, like and trust”
Well Snapchat is the platform you can utilize to show your customers who the people are behind your brand.
This is a great platform for those wanting to build relationships with other businesses and professionals.
LinkedIn has provided the network for businesses to find new talent or grow their network of potential suppliers or customers.
Build your own LinkedIn business page and start building and growing your network today.
Whatever platform you choose to utilize make sure you stay engaged with your followers. You don’t have to be on every platform, and not every platform will suit your needs.
Go where your customers are, If the majority of your clients are on Twitter then double down on that…If its FaceBook and Twitter then get busy on them.
It’s hard for me to say what platform you need to utilize, you will have to do some digging to establish where your customers are, but it is well worth finding this out before going all in on a particular platform.
4. Awesome tips to get you going…NOW.
There is no time like the present, and as we have discussed the key to a successful social media profile is having a clear social media strategy.
This requires you to have a clear understanding about your audience.
I have had the pleasure of interviewing some incredible entrepreneurs who are experts in this industry. I have linked the interviews below as I feel they will offer a lot of value here.
Download these episodes for free…There is over 7 hours of jam packed interviews with experts in the online marketing and sales industry here. Be sure to download them and immerse yourself in the content they share.
BUT WAIT…Download them then head straight back here to finish the post…You can plug the podcasts in once we have given you everything you need to know in this post.
So what can you start doing NOW to build social media presence for you and your company.
1.Start a FaceBook group…The great thing about FaceBook groups is you can invite people to like them, so you don’t even have to wait for people to find you or promote it to cold traffic.
You can start to build an audience straight away from the people you already have as friends and followers.
Make sure that the people you invite have an interest in what your group offers, otherwise they will not engage with you and join the group.
2.Find and engage…Twitter has a great search function where you can find people that have an interest in products or services related to yours.
All you have to do is go to https://twitter.com/search-home and start looking for key search terms…
If I was in the coffee industry and was selling organic fresh ground coffee online and was giving away free samples with a free plus shipping offer I would want to find people that love coffee.
I would simply put in a search term “coffee and you would get the following results:
You can then see who is loving coffee right NOW and message them…build a relationship and then send them a free offer.
Say you now have a relationship with a number of small coffee shop owners you could try to get your coffee in their shops.
It’s not as black and white as that but you get the picture, you can start to build relationships with people straight away who have an active interest in your product.
These are just 2 ways, but are quick and effective…they will allow you to start building relationships with people online RIGHT NOW!
5. Filling your social media calendar with AWESOME content:
It’s important to map out your campaign from the start. You want to fill your calendar with content that will do the following:
These are a must when creating content for your social media campaigns. There is an abundance of content online today and it is very easy to get lost in people’s newsfeeds.
It is also very important to keep the content coming so your audience has exposure to you every day. It’s no good posting once a week and being done with it.
The content has to offer an enormous amount of value and be consistent. The second your content under delivers you will lose a potential customer. It’s a good thing if a few people don’t like it either.
People really engage with people that share the same views, just look at the Trump campaign.
You have avid Trump fans that hang on every word he says and will support any decision he makes regardless of the outcome…then you have a good handful of people that cannot stand Trump!
Do you think that matters…NO. The amount of publicity Trump got was just as good from the haters and the lovers…It gave him incredible exposure where it allowed others to follow him or disregard him altogether, and look how that turned out.
The amount you post is down to you, you don’t want to stretch yourself and produce poor quality content. It will take some testing, however fulfil the needs of your audience…it’s not a bad thing if they want more.
The title of your post is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle. When someone is scrolling at 100mph through their newsfeed you need to catch their eye…To disrupt their thought pattern.
A fantastic piece of advice I received from Russell Brunson was to look at the national enquirer headlines.
There are a ton of incredible headlines that truly catch your eye.
An example of a few are:
“Hillary Clinton Adopts Alien Baby”
“Trumps Mistress Cheats On Donald With Tom Cruise”
“Cosby Had Son Murdered!”
“Bigfoot Kept Lumberjack As Love Slave”
“Oprah Caught In Blackmail Scandal”
I don’t know about you but I want to read these articles…the headlines are incredible and definitely get you to look twice.
Your headlines need to pack the same punch. Another key point is images. This is something people often get wrong. Now this depends on the platform you are posting on. There are optimal sizes for images on certain platforms:
There’s a great post that outlines the exact social media image sizes for every platform:
Images have been tested tirelessly. It depends on what traffic you are looking to target to what images perform best:
Cold traffic: This is generally an image that does not make sense. Something that catches the person’s attention and makes them have to look twice.
Just look at the national enquirer photos from earlier. They all have images that do not make a ton of sense.
You wonder what he is talking about, also the play button lets you know that there is a video that you can watch…Interesting, this has proven to be way more effective than professional images with cold traffic.
With warm or hot traffic you can afford to go a little more classy:
These types of images blend in a bit more in people’s newsfeeds which is why warm and hot traffic will notice them over cold. With cold traffic you need to grab them from whatever they intend to do next.
Hot and warm traffic will notice you more than people who have no idea who you are…That’s why you can get away with more professional images.
The last thing that is hot at the minute is live video streaming…This is where all video content will go. Its interesting because people used to spend a lot of time and money creating professional videos.
People love to see the real un edited version of you and your company. This is why live video is an incredible way to reach your audience and build a relationship with them.
Below are some incredible resources you can use to create your own social media images on a desktop and mobile device.
To sign up to Canva and Pixabay follow the links below:
There is also a great mobile app called Word Swag that will enable you to create awesome social media images in minutes:
To get Word Swag visit the link below:
6.Automating Posts and Schedules:
Automating your social media posts is an incredibly time efficient way to continue to provide great quality content to your followers without it consuming all of your time.
The key to building great relationships with your followers though is to actually engage with them on a regular basis. With that in mind I would use the tools outlined below to automate the initial post then follow up and engage with your followers in person to really utilise these systems:
Let’s move onto the software you can use to set up a killer content and automation system:
MeetEdgar – https://meetedgar.com
Later – https://later.com
Iconsquare – https://pro.iconosquare.com
Instagress – https://instagress.com
Canva – https://www.canva.com
Word Swag – http://wordswag.co
Pixabay – https://pixabay.com
Let’s meet Edgar… this tool is awesome for posting to FaceBook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
To sign up to Edgar follow the link below:
Now let’s look at Later. Later is brilliant at scheduling your Instagram posts…
To sign up to Later follow the link below:
Now let’s take a look at Inconsquare. This software provides analytics for your Instagram account, and is vital for anyone trying to create a social media presence…
To sign up to Iconsquare follow the link below:
Next on the agenda is Instagress. This is an Instagram interaction tool that is great for automatically liking, following, commenting and un following people on Instagram.
To sign up to Instagress follow the link below:
All of these tools are all you need to automate your social media posts via every platform I have outlined above bar Snapchat.
7.How to achieve real engagement from the right people:
This is a huge part of building relationships with the right customers. The last thing you want to do is spend a whole ton of time and money building an audience only to discover they are not your target market!
I have fallen victim to this and there is no worse feeling. If you are building an audience to understand their needs you have to make sure they are the right people.
If you get this wrong you will achieve the following:
Find the wrong problem to solve.
No one will buy your products or services when you launch.
No one will engage with and share your content as it will not resonate with them.
Have thousands of people who are not the right fit for your brand and what it represents.
All of the points above highlight why it is so important to concentrate on building a following of quality followers over the quantity of followers.
It is much better to have 100 people in your audience that will engage with your every post, share your content, products and services and become raving fans than 10,000 people that don’t care.
To do this you first need to understand who your customer is, what their problems are and where they hang out.
This could be in certain FaceBook groups, online forums or even local locations like book clubs and coffee shops. Even though this is all about social media marketing you are still talking and building relationships with real people.
Therefore you have to go where they are. The more you can find out about your target market the easier it will be to find them.
Don’t rush this part. Take as much time as you need to establish everything outlined above. As this is a post about social media marketing in general I won’t go into customer profiling here.
Please be aware of the importance of this part, get this wrong and nothing else is even relevant as you are preaching to the wrong crowd.
8.Why you need to jab jab jab….jab jab jab…and then consider throwing a hook!
This is a common mistake that a lot of people make. I will refer back to the first point I made in this post about meeting someone for the first time at a friend’s wedding…
When meeting someone for the first time you would not approach them with your best offer and try to sell them. you would spend some time getting to know them first.
When people are marketing on social media they forget about the acceptable social norms.
It’s like when you’re in a car and stuck in traffic….If you witness someone cutting another person up 9 times out of 10 the person being cut up will erupt with anger and scream, curse and swear at the other person.
Yet you take that same person out of the car and put them in a queue at the shops, watch how differently they react when someone cuts in front of them.
At best they will let out a sigh of frustration or even say excuse me but we are queuing.
So what changed? When someone is sitting behind the computer screen or in their car they are protected and separated from the real world, therefore it is very easy to act outside the socially accepted norms.
Put them in front of real people and everything changes, now there is a level of empathy that was not there before as you are dealing with a real person and not another car or social media account on your computer screen.
So when you are marketing to your clients, or potential clients, you need to apply the same level of empathy as you would if they were right in front of you in the same room.
This is an incredibly simple yet effective strategy that will allow you to understand the needs of your clients and better serve them with your products or services.
There is also a level of trust that has to be built when dealing with people online. If you can demonstrate that you understand the person’s needs and how to fulfil them your winning.
Do this for free with incredible content that asks for nothing in return except an email address from time to time and you will start to build trust with the person.
Once you establish that level of trust you can then start to ask them to check out your products or services.
We can go one further and say that a properly established social media strategy will actually put you in a position where you are an authority that people trust and will happily invest in when the time comes.
They will be asking you if they can check out your products!