If you own a business today, chances are you have some presence on social media. Depending on your business, you could be active on such sites as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or one of the many other social medial platforms popular today.

In her article, Is Your Business Social Enough, 4 Ways to Boost Engagement, Nicole Fallon Taylor writes that for businesses to get the most out of social media, they need to be engaging in meaningful conversations on social media. In other words, while businesses need to focus on broadcasting on social media, they also need to focus on engagement. If they don’t, they are missing out on establishing important connections with their target audience.

Taylor offers some tips on how to find the correct social media balance for your business so that its social media strategy is as effective as possible. For example, she urges business owners to view social media from the perspective of a consumer:

Take off your “business” hat for a moment, and think about what you, as a consumer, want  from the brands you follow on social media. You’d probably be put off by a company that only   shares its own links and nothing else — and so would your own customers.

Her other tips include:

  • Prioritize Customer Communications: Never let a customer question or complaint go answered. If it is going to take some time to get a question answered or complaint resolved, make sure you respond and let the customer know that right away.
  • Know and Own Your Brand Voice: Don’t try to be something you are not. When you are communicating with customers on social media don’t try to be too hip or too funny (unless your brand really is hip or funny). People respond best to authenticity.
  • Focus on Channels that Make the Most Sense: It is always better to have a well-executed and active social media presence on one or two channels than to try to be everywhere all the time.

Social media is becoming more powerful and far-reaching by the day. That’s why just showing up isn’t enough anymore.

 

Social media is one of the most important marketing tools for small and medium-sized businesses today. Almost 90 percent of marketers will tell you that a social media presence is critical to the success of their business. So it’s no wonder that social media is where small and medium-sized businesses spend the majority of their marketing dollars.

Social media is also becoming an important player when it comes to SEO. Recent changes to Google’s algorithm mean that the more active you are on social media, the higher your search engine rankings.

If social media is so essential to the success of a business, then why is it that so many businesses do not have a social media strategy in place? For starters, many marketers simply do not know what a social media strategy actually entails. They also mistakenly believe that simply sharing helpful information or updating their followers on new products or services is an effective social media strategy.

Unfortunately for these businesses, a solid social media strategy involves much more than just slapping information up on a social media site or two. Instead, a successful social media strategy involves engaging and interacting with your target audience while establishing yourself as a thought leader in your industry. So how is this accomplished? The following steps are necessary to establish an effective social media strategy:

  1. Research and understand your particular target audience
  2. Use a distinct voice to compose posts and updates, as well as to interact with your followers
  3. Monitor your sites so that you are able to respond to comments and feedback from your followers in a timely manner
  4. Put measurable goals in place to accurately and regularly assess the success of your social media efforts
  5. Create a publication calendar and schedule of posts

Social media can be overwhelming for the newbie and just because someone has a personal Facebook or Twitter account, that doesn’t make him or her an expert in social media. Instead, it is often best to seek help from an outside source to make sure that you are putting your social media marketing dollars to use wisely.

 

 

 

 

If you are marketing a B2B business but have yet to implement Facebook as part of your overall marketing strategy, you are not alone. Unfortunately, you also are missing out on a critical platform that can help with lead generation and establishing yourself as a thought leader in your industry.

In his article, Why Facebook is Essential to Your B2B Marketing, Gene Hammett explains how Facebook offers a unique opportunity for B2B marketers to connect with, engage, and provide added value to their clients. He also explains why if it has been a while since you have explored Facebook, you should take another look at this popular social media platform and some of its many new offerings.

Valerie Shoopman is an expert on Facebook Marketing. In his article, Hammett quotes Shoopman on the topic of Facebook ads. According to Shoopman:

The newest thing on the Facebook platform that has people talking is the new Lead Gen ads. It is lowering the cost to acquire new leads and works extremely well with mobile.

So what else does Facebook have to offer B2B marketers that they can’t afford to miss out on? Advertising intelligence and brand and reputation management. Advertising intelligence allows businesses to create customized messaging to a highly targeted audience. Brand and reputation management allows a business to participate in the world’s largest social-media conversation thanks to Facebook’s 1.55 billion users. Other new Facebook offerings include live video, video posts, and advertisements.

Marketing your business through social media is critical to the success of your brand. In fact, social media marketing is no longer an option for businesses looking to promote their brand, products and services—it is a must.

Social media also is critical to SEO ranking. In her article, 10 Things You Have to Know about SEO & Social Media in 2016, Dee Stephens says that the relationship between social media and SEO rankings involves much more than creating and posting great content.

It’s about promoting that content so that it achieves the results we are looking for.

Unfortunately, many businesses today aren’t quite sure what they are looking for. Thankfully, Stephens’ article helps you to better ascertain what you need from social media as well as how to get it. She touches on topics such as why you need more than a social presence to increase your SEO ranking; the importance of post optimization; and the fact that SEO and social media are both considered to be inbound marketing techniques.

Stephens concludes her article with a healthy dose of realism.

As we move into 2016, it’s important that businesses’ and brands make allowances for social media, content marketing and SEO in their marketing budgets, and have these disciplines implemented in their business this year, as without these things working like a well-oiled machine, I fear those left behind in 2017 will stay behind.

If you own your own business, a strong social media presence is a must. Too often, however, small business owners find themselves spending so much time managing their social media sites, they begin to wonder if it is really worth the effort.

Social media has become complex. Each social platform has more features and the learning curve is steeper. There are hundreds of ways to use social media for business, but not all of those ways will work for every business.

Here are some tips for saving time on social media:
  • Target and master a couple of platforms, rather than dabbling in many. Social media has become complex. Each social platform has more features and the learning curve is steeper.
  • Focus on the platforms your customers spend the most time on or that fit your industry. The 80/20 rule applies here. By focusing on just two or three, you use your time efficiently and you’ll have a bigger impact on the platforms because you can learn more about how to use them.
  • Measure results – but only those that count. Pick a few metrics that directly impact your business. For example, track which types of posts get the most click-throughs to your product pages or lead capture form. When deciding which metrics to track, ask yourself: how does this benefit my business?
  • Schedule posts, set up brand alerts, and continue to try out new approaches.
  • Consider outsourcing social media management.
At GoLeads, we help businesses manage their social media sites every day. This allows our clients to concentrate on their core businesses while we make sure their business has an active and engaging presence on social media.

While many business owners are leery of handing off their social media management, it is important to remember that they still have ultimate control. The key is to pick an experienced firm that will be able to quickly get up to speed on your business and will require the least amount of hand-holding.