Creating something from nothing is an exhausting task, even today, when we are so used to technology making everything easier for us. Saying that the internet should be the main focus of every business is old news, but keeping up with the latest trends seems almost impossible nowadays. Branding has moved on – it went from simply establishing a name through branded products or services that feature a catchy logo and have a nice brand story woven around them, to creating complex marketing strategies that combine offline and online methods.
When you want to make your business something worth mentioning and respectable, and make your efforts cost-effective in the long run, you have to work a bit harder than you used to. If you want to build your brand in a virtual surrounding you’ll have to be updated and ready for a change at any given time. In order to accomplish this, you’ll have to step out of your comfort zone and step into the world of possibilities called social media marketing.
The First Steps towards the Goal
The word “change” appears to cause shivers among many business owners, yet it doesn’t have to be that difficult at all. All you have to do is constantly learn small tricks of the trade. Don’t be ashamed to take a closer look at what your competition is doing, or what the big companies do in order to stay on top. This way, you’ll be able to find the right fit for the foundation your future actions will be based on.
Take a closer look at your previous online actions and campaigns, do the math on what works with your clients, what brings you new ones and use the data to your advantage. Keeping records might be the key to knowing in advance what you need to repeat and what you need to alter for your benefit.
The best thing about social media marketing is that you can’t lose too much financially, yet you’ll have your analytics either way and you’ll know what never to do again if you mess up. Even if you fail once or twice you will gain experience what will lead you towards your ultimate goal.
First Things First: Focus on the Simple Stuff
Before you start working on any type of social media promotion for your brand, make sure that you’ve covered the basics first. By that I mean your website, logo, company goals, value proposition, the initial idea driving your mission and, of course, a carefully defined target group.
The visual part of your presentation is the first thing any of your leads or clients will notice, so don’t use too many distracting images and colors. Write your about section as simple as you can, filled out with information everyone should know, i.e. the things you are proud of and want to be remembered for. Make sure that your goals are clear, your story trustworthy and engaging to the type of people you want to attract.
All your social media channels should be named the same, displayed on your website and they should link to one another. Maintain all of them and use the resources each provides you with.
Traditional Ways and Why You Should Forget about Them
Brand building on social media outposts received a major boost through the use of hashtags. Every social media network has included them in their interface as an easy way of bringing people with the same interest closer, and yes, hashtags did the trick, but only to a certain point. The thing is, you will get the initial attention, but since hashtags don’t give a followup to your potential leads, or any feedback as a matter a fact, at the end of the day your brand won’t be remembered, meaning that you will have failed in your mission.
Another method that is still popular is simply using paid content. With good targeting, you’ll be able to attract people and increase your follower base, but again there is a limit to it. For instance, traditional Facebook ad appears on the right side of the news feed, which can easily go unnoticed or simply avoided altogether through the use of an ad-block app.
Lastly, an often used way of leveraging social media is linking all of your different profiles together. It’s great to have every account updated regularly, but let’s face it, it’s tiresome. Repeating the same content will just make you come across as a boring, uncreative business owner.
The Real Deal
Earlier I mentioned Facebook ads as one of the ways of running your campaigns. What people rarely use, but can actually bring you a bigger audience and better feedback is a simple Facebook offer. With this option, there is a better chance that your ad will be seen, since offers appear in the newsfeed instead of on the side of it. Every click on it takes your leads to the current campaign and Facebook automatically sends them an email with all your info and relevant links. Yet another advantage of the offer is that it can be targeted better.
Statistics show five times higher engagement than classical ads and the follow-up info provides a richer perspective of the brand. Once the people have subscribed to your mailing list don’t use it for typical spam content, but make sure each and every digital letter you send out contains info about your other campaigns led over other social media channels. Keep in mind that quality is always better than quantity.
Many theorists consider LinkedIn outdated, emphasizing the limited reach towards leads. That might be true when it comes to personal profiles, but with a company profile, the reach can be expanded to a wider audience by using personal profiles of every single employee alongside with your own. The best part of a company profile is an option that gives you closer contact with your followers. Every update can be targeted to a specific branch for free. This way, you won’t be bothering every follower with each and every update or campaign you are leading, just the ones that they might be interested in it.
Another great approach is sharing. Don’t be selfish when it comes to new discoveries and useful niche-related information – give them to your audience through blogs and webinars. The effect is simple, you would be making yourself a teacher in your field, giving your clients a place to learn and at the same time improving your outreach and credibility. Webinars or video conferences will show that you are open to the public. Good social media interaction means transforming your target group into a community.
Trust and reliance are gained faster, and at the same time the brand grows, setting itself high on the business ladder. Always ask for your users’ opinion without hesitation. This is not a sign of weakness, but a way to show that you want to learn more about your followers’ needs.
Once your client base is more or less settled, you can show appreciation through occasional giveaways, which can be promoted through all the different social media websites. Likewise, free tokens of trust in material form won’t only cements your status, but will also bring new prospects straight to your lap.