Chances are your customers use at least one of the most popular social media outlets like Twitter or Facebook, so your business needs to as well.
If not, you risk losing customers to competitors that embraced this powerful branch of your marketing before you did.
A lot of businesses who start marketing in the social media space find a whole host of frustrations they didn’t expect. Like we all learned during the Internet Boom of the 1990’s, the technology is just a tool which is completely useless if you don’t have a solid business and marketing plan behind it.
Running a proper social media marketing campaign means keeping content fresh, responding to and engaging with your potential customers across several platforms. This has turned a lot of people off to the idea of social media marketing, but don’t despair!
Here are some easy tips to simplify your social media marketing.
Plot Your Course
It’s hard to figure out how you’re going to get somewhere if you don’t know where you’re going. If you ever did any sort of traditional marketing, chances are you didn’t just start throwing money at it and hope it all worked out.
Do your homework and find out what social media platforms your clients are using. By knowing where your potential customers are, or at least narrowing down the options, you can avoid the shotgun approach and focus in like a laser to get the best results.
Know Thy Enemy
With a little harmless reconnaissance, you’ll be able to see what is working well, what’s a waste of time and where you can define yourself in the market compared to your competitors. By going in with this information, you can avoid wasting time and resources.
Are your competitors’ brands entrenched on Facebook already? Is one firm the master of Twitter when it comes to your market? Research all of this first and you’ll spend a whole less time banging your head against the wall wondering why you’re not seeing the results you’re after.
Put it All Under One Roof
Why waste time logging into several different accounts just to say the same thing in different places, when you can use one of the latest social media tools to bring it all together on one platform? Web based programs like Hootsuite, Posterous and Netvibes are very popular amongst the super stars of social media efficiency these days, and for good reason.
By logging into one website, you can read, respond to and schedule messages on a wide variety of social media sites. Most come with apps for iPhone, iPad, Black Berry and other devices so you can do it all on the go.
Even with the latest and greatest sites out there, you’re still going to have to brainstorm posts, research them, write them, gather links and so on. Unless social media is your business, you have better things to do than burn time on these tasks.
That’s where our trusty friend, outsourcing, comes into play. You can find experienced social media help on freelance/outsourcing sites like Elance or oDesk for really reasonable rates. If that doesn’t work for you, look around at the next family gathering and pick one of your relations that has that blank stare kids get when they text for too long at one time.
As long as you help craft the uniform marketing message, have someone else do the grunt work.
I’ve been hacking at various business ideas since I was 16. I’m a full stack developer and love crafting user experiences. I’ve been nose deep in code since I put the legos down, and built several successful businesses in the process. I’ve lost some hair, gained some experience and throughly enjoyed the journey.