5 Critical Steps to Your Company’s Social Media Strategy

Posted: April 10, 2011 in Social Media
Michele Joel

Michele Joel, Social Media Expert

 

Social media marketing is an extremely important aspect to acquire leads and cultivate brand awareness. Many start-ups realize they must engage their audience within social media networks, yet with 600,000 (and counting) social media niche portals available, the vast amount of choices could seem daunting for a new business owner.

These are the five critical topics about social media every business must identify:

1. Create a social media strategy. Study the different social media channels and trends to see what kind of conversations are discussed about your company’s service or product. If dialogue is scarce, that may indicate which networks you can strategize to increase and motivate discussions.

Also, whichever strategy you choose to use in order to accomplish brand awareness and lead generation should be adaptive. The dynamics of social media change rather quickly, so it is important to monitor your strategy and adjust it from time to time in order to match changing trends in social networks. You need to be the leader, not the follower.

2. Learn what your competitors are saying. You can also see what your competitors are doing and how you might differentiate yourself in order to gain competitive advantage within the social media ecosystem. Having a social media strategy is great, but if you are not on top of listening to the conversations and questions by your competition’s community, and review social media consumer trends, you will be left in the dust by stronger competitors who are pro-active.

3. Become visible. Having a social media presence is great, but only worthwhile when you have the right message, and amount of conversations that are of VALUE to your audience. Just having a static profile does not drive leads to want to engage. There has to be consistent conversations that are transparent and not “sales-y”. Think of how visible you want to be and keep up that level of conversation. Remember, it is quality and the right quantity of conversations that make your company visible.

4. Investigate your consumer. Ask questions, educate your fans/followers, show the behind the scenes, offer promotional incentives, and be as transparent as you can be in order to engage with customers. This conversation will set the tone of building relationships. Customers can see when you are authentic and when you are just trying to sell them a product or service.

5. Identify if you have the time. Social media marketing will be close to a full-time job for many business owners, in order to yield the 10-18% return. It takes time to be on-top of conversations, leading dialogues, engaging communities, adding fans/followers and building relationships. It is better for you to outsource to social media companies than to risk having the wrong message, inconsistent quantity of messages, or waste your time, when you need to run business operations. Do yourself a favor and hire experts, if you can do it. This will allow you the time to meet with the leads social media brings to close the deal.

Michele Joel
GoldBug Group Social Media

 

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