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The Secret to Successful Social Media

Here are some notes from a handout I recently created when I was an expert speaker for Business Link on it’s Secrets of Online Marketing seminar tour across the South-East, I hope you find them useful:

What – is Social Media?

It is web based and mobile technologies that create an interactive dialogue and use ‘User generated content.’ It’s all about being ‘social’ which means discussion, sharing, and the imparting of information between organisations, communities and individuals.

Who – are the companies involved?

As a small or medium sized business the main social networks you need to consider are:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus

Also, having your own blog can prove indispensible, this can be integrated into your website or you can use a low cost platform, such as, WordPress.

Where – what is right for you?

  • Who is your target audience and what do they use?
  • If don’t know  – ask them or have a look on Twitter or Facebook to see if any of your existing customers are there, whether they are businesses or individuals
  • Why – use it?

By using conversations and by being ‘social’ you can:

  • Raise your profile
  • Establish yourself as an expert
  • Become the first people that people think of when they have a problem or need a product/service, inform
  • Start discussions/debates
  • Highlight new products/services
  • Source contacts
  • Carry out research or market testing
  • Find out what others are up to: customers, competitors, industry associations
  • Get opinions and so much more…

But most importantly, why do you want to do it? What are your needs and objectives?

When – do you do it?

Set aside regular time in your diary, how much/little is down to you, there is no right or wrong …Think about how important is Social Media to your business, how much time you have and do you need to delegate it to someone else?

The 3 How’s

How – do you know what to say?

Think about what do you want to talk about or promote and then set a brief plan for yourself. You may set aside an hour a week, so plan for the next month what you will talk about/ask for/do on those days. For example, you may have four things you want to highlight and you can discuss one of them in each of the weeks:

  • An event you’re holding
  • A new product you are launching
  • Some information you would like to share
  • Feedback on a new service

How – to get started

Try You Tube tutorials, buy a book or go on a course, source professional help, look among your own team to see if someone has a natural interest and knowledge you can use.

Then, once you have your accounts up and running you can:

  • Search for existing customers to connect with and see who they are connected to
  • Look for those clients you’d like to target and work with
  • Look at your competitors and who they are linked with
  • Look for associations/groups you can join or belong to

How – do you know it’s working?

  • Ensure new enquiries are recorded as to their source
  • Look in your Google Analytics as to where web visitors are coming from
  • Record how many followers/connections you have and review to see progress
  • See how many people are talking about, mentioning you, joining your debates etc – this is all value for your business, it’s not just about direct, immediate sales

Remember, Social Media is more about building long term relationships and raising your brand awareness combined with your website, advertising, networking – it’s a culmunitive effect! Use Google Alerts or Tweet Beep to keep an eye on what’s being said, these are free monitoring tools.

Other tips

  • Links are good for the SEO (search engine positioning) of your website, link from your Social Media choices, such as, Twitter or Facebook to your blog stories on your website, or your news page or product pages
  • Re-use content, for example, if you create a blog story, link to it from Twitter and Facebook, publish it on a Linked In group discussion board and submit it to article directories
  • Don’t forget to be social! It’s not all you you you! Help others and join their discussions, helping to spread the word about their events or products/services, it will make people more likely to help you in return
  • Have fun and show personality, but keep it professional, you don’t want to become too familiar and damage your brand in any way
  • Make sure you integrate your Social Media activities into your overall marketing mix

Good luck, I hope you get great results!

By Natalie Page

Marketing Consultant & Expert Speaker

If you would like any assistance with your marketing, please don’t hesitate to contact us here today at Page Marketing in Brighton, East Sussex on 01273 677939 or 07900 153503 or email: info@page-marketing.co.uk