You might think that all you need to master social media marketing is a Facebook fan page and a Twitter account. But don’t you care about revenue? Or sales leads? Or improving customer relations? How do you use those tools to deliver on those needs? And how do you track whether or not your social media is delivering the results you need?
That’s where a social media marketing professional can help.
Social media is a complicated and varied landscape. There are no hard and fast rules. There is no one-size-fits-all solution to help your business succeed using social media. What you need is a custom designed plan that takes into account what you hope to accomplish with social media and what resources you have available to make that happen.
The best way to use social media marketing to your advantage is by creating an effective marketing plan. The best social media marketers will blend traditional marketers techniques with the latest digital media trends to deliver results which fit your needs. They will also design a marketing plan which is trackable, so you know what is working and how.This way you can emphasize the parts which work well and scale back efforts which might not be delivering the results you need.
Social media is arguably the greatest communication tool ever devised by humankind, but that does not mean it is perfect. In fact, if your social media marketing plan is not correctly designed you will not see the results you want and you are likely to spend more money on the plan than the plan delivers.
The ever-expanding universe of social-media technologies – including video-sharing, mobile phones, and networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter that allow individuals to share and connect – is as ubiquitous as it is misunderstood. Apostles hail its power to oust dictators and bring us together; skeptics worry that it homogenises our thinking and trivialises our relationships. Let’s separate fact from fiction.
Social media gives power to the people
More than five billion people are connected via mobile phones, two billion are on the internet, and Facebook boasts some 750 million users. With such wide reach, it’s easy to assume that communications technologies are great equalisers, increasing the political and economic power of the least well-off.
Certainly, there are examples of new technologies helping the less fortunate. Kenyan farmers and Indian fishermen have used phone applications to bypass corrupt middlemen and get real-time prices for their goods. Anecdotes abound of bloggers documenting human rights abuses, activists communicating via social media during the Arab Spring and indigenous people in Mexico using online newsgroups to promote their struggle for sovereignty. Even the current Occupy Wall Street effort was organised via social media.
But to best take advantage of a technology, people need dependable physical infrastructure and human capital – including electricity, education and media literacy. This is true even in the United States.
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