The days of “willy nilly” practices on social media are gone. You have to be on it to get something from it. Finding the right platforms to garner your “social street cred” takes planning, consistency and measure, say Barbara Pender, a certified social media strategist, and Toni Harris, a marketing strategist.
Starting out, you should be concentrating your efforts on two specific social media platforms, say LinkedIn and Twitter or Facebook and LinkedIn. “Once you become as close to an expert as you can on those platforms, then you want to venture out and use some of the other platforms as you see fit and as you continue to grow your business prospects,” say Pender and Harris. In addition to social media, Harris and Pender also suggest that email marketing be a vital tool you use in your marketing.
LinkedIn is a must because people are always going to research you as they network with you and they begin to do business with you. Your LinkedIn profile should be complete and be a reflection of what you and your business can do to serve your network. Your second social media choice should be the one where your network of clients and prospects would want to connect with you.
Below Pender and Harris provide the five best practices in social media that your business can take advantage of and give you the edge.. These practices are already in place. You simply need to seize the benefits and leverage the outcome.
- Go With The Flow– Everyday there is a trend list, visible on #Facebook, #Twitter and #Mashable’s Alerts. Check out theirs or create your own social velocity alerts (SVA), through subscribing or registering their rss feed or of course, Google alerts. Allow social velocity alerts to ping you there is more social media activity than normal.
- Content Is Still King– Of course you have something to say, but you feel like it is a crap shoot to get a like, post or share. Pay attention to what gets a reaction and when; then go at it. Here is the ranking of response to understand, we all want to be LIKED, and good content will motivate a reply but great content gets SHARED and really drive the social content to viral status. Whatever you do, don’t automate your social media until you are physically consistent on your platforms yourself.
- Pay To Play –Focus on your social media campaigns. You are going to have get strategic and ‘pay to play’ if you want to stand out and take your business to the next level. While you want create great content, you want to boost that content that is getting a lot of attention and great responses (i.e., a lot of shares, retweets, etc). This means paying to create an ad around that content. You want to monitor and measure what you are doing on social media.
- Video, Selfies, Ussies– The whole world has gone viral; not only a picture but also your video is worth a thousand words. If you think that you can’t produce a video, it is simply taking your #selfies and #ussies to the next level. Start with your family gatherings for practice, send it out and have others critique. Entrepreneurs take for granted information that they know as an expert in their own field. So, many people are in the do-it yourself mode. For example, if as a business owner you have a cosmetic brand, consider posting a video that shows how to do eyelash extensions. Or if you have a men’s apparel company, post a video showing how to tie a bow-tie.. Your two minute videos should have a “serve” mode.
- Utilize Email Marketing– Email marketing is not dead! In fact, in according to Entrepreneur.com, Email is 40 Times More Effective Than Facebook and Twitter! Why is that? Because by delivering an email to your clients and prospects inboxes, you are sticking your message in their face. Whereas with social media if your audience is not online the moment you post your valuable content, then they missed it. The other key factor with email marketing is that you own your list. You have total control of the amount of people that receive your message. With social media you are at the mercy of the social media platform and their algorithms. Implementing an email marketing strategy keeps your connected and reminds your audience that you are in business.
In conclusion, utilizing social media and email marketing are great ways to spread your brand globally. A business owner is missing the boat if he is using just social media and not email marketing. The two enhance one another and go together like ice cream and cake. You can have them separate but they are so much better together!
Toni Harris and Barbara Pender are certified email and social media marketing specialists who will help you to get your “social act together” at the 2015 Social Media Camp. You can reach them at www.i-media-marketing.com.