Social Media Marketing: Marketing Opportunities Without Hard Selling
What is called social media marketing? It is an exciting new use of social media to promote products and services. Platforms like Twitter and Facebook allow large communities of people share opinions, thoughts and experiences with each other. These are good places to find out what people are saying about your products. It has never been easier for businesses to know what their consumers are thinking and in real time too. This aspect of social media itself shows how it can be a good marketing tool.
It has also never been easier – or cheaper – for businesses to reach out to people. They can create a profile to interact directly with their existing buyers. They can also make potential customers aware of their identity and provide updates on new products. Once a business creates a personalized profile on a website, people will ‘like’ or ‘follow’ them. They will constantly interact with the businesses and even be influenced to buy. Studies have found that more number of people today rely on social media to help them decide what they will buy.
Aware Of Your Position
Small businesses will find this type of marketing a viable method of drawing customers. As a business owner, you should at least have a basic working knowledge of what social media marketing is all about. You should know how to connect with people, especially your target market, through it, to create excellent content that moves people to act, and to create relationships. The marketing is about communicating with your target audience, informing them about your business, and eventually getting them involved. It could produce customer feedback, leads, and the opportunity to give them excellent customer service. But you will not get the response that you are hoping for unless you share your information the right way.
Whatever outlet becomes popular over the years, one thing is for sure – social media marketing will always be useful to businesses and marketers alike, and make it work for You :
Facebook: Holding more than 950 million users, if you’re already a Facebook user this might not be really new to you, but there are lots of features worth mentioning. You can create a dedicated business page and interact directly, and free, with your customers uploading free pictures, products and videos of the service you intend to provide or the product you are trying to sell. Most of these social media sites have seamlessly mobile integration so people whether it is a portable PC, a desktop, tablet or mobile phone get always connected with media in a way that you should take advantage of. People log in to Facebook, in any situation, while commuting, in the park, at home, at school, at work. Then you’re there, promoting your business for it to be displayed in the news feeds, and you would be there, constantly doing the mind trick game to the point that people will find something attractive and worth checking according to their interests.
Twitter : A very popular social media site, with over 340,000,000 tweets a day, this platform is pretty appealing to business and companies as well as for celebrities, musicians, actors, everybody! A tweet is a message of 140 characters maximum that one can write and post and followers can read and see any time in their news feeds. Talk about it, interact directly and start new conversations is one of the things that make this platform extremely successful. The way they follow and read and talk about everything she tweets in a day, the same way they can do with advertising and marketing campaigns about brands and products of their interest.
With the huge users to target the right audience might sound like a difficult task, but seen it from the other side of the coin, that means more potential customers for a business. Once you get into the already mentioned vicious chain of any social media site, things just keep coming along by themselves and first thing you’ll notice is hundreds of hundreds of people engaged in your brand, talking about it, reviewing it and telling others about events, broadcast and such.
LinkedIn: This not for average people, but a very professional and strategic one for the rest. Some people won’t spend long hours chatting or talking to other about silly, trivial things, instead, this social network goes straight to the point. People on Facebook and Twitter for example, follow anyone of their interest for the sake of simply socialize as well as businesses and companies, but LinkedIn is intended to filter and leave the fun behind to focus deeper in professionalism in social media.
In LinkedIn, you can be part of the people looking for a job/ service, or part of a company offering a job/ service. But its oke, and still you can create either a personal profile with your professional information about yourself, studies, contact information, interests, certifications, identifications etc. or, create a business or company page, same way as you do it on Facebook or Twitter sufficing the same purpose: share information about your brand, service, product and keep your audience and followers up to date with the latest information about your company.
YouTube : YouTube is a very interesting platform. People go watch videos of any kind or gets redirected by any website that has a backlink to it or search engines. Once people is there on a given there you have some more “Related Videos” on a column on the right side of the screen. Clicking from video to video makes you find things you never thought you would find, interesting topics, funny videos, how-to kind of videos, publicity etc. Your chances to be seen are overwhelming and you can also get people subscribe to your Channel, which is in other terms, your own YouTube space where you upload your videos. Some people find it way more interesting and easier to just watch a video rather than reading a whole article. You have the resource of visuals. If you were to promote fashion clothes and that is the purpose of your whole social media marketing, you can, along with other options, upload a video with people modeling your clothes, redirect people to your main business site, recommend people to share your video, to subscribe for future video updates, to visit your “fashion blog”, like your page on Facebook, follow you on Tweeter, Google+, LinkedIn, etc. Close your eyes and try to visualize the Tree Diagram of the whole Social Media marketing strategy and how it gets to potentially reach every single corner of the World Wide Web. Ambitious, isn’t it?
Google+ : A fairly new comer on the social media site battle, Google+ offers integration of a variety of services including Gmail, Google+ Basics, Google+ Circles that let you share information or “statuses” in a way Facebook does, but has less popularity so far. You have the “Stream” feature similar to Facebook’s News Feed that would let you see what others are up to, an option for following very similar as well to Tweeter. The service is very appealing to professionals and business networks because of the exclusivity and integration of services. You create a Gmail account for example, and unless you disable it, by default you have access to all these service and a profile ready to be edited with a picture, contact information, etc.
You have access to the whole Google+ network including already mention Gmail, YouTube, You+, Circles, Basics and even the well-known search engine saving and displaying results to the most relevant things to you. It is convenient to have a spare Google+ account for any Social Media Marketer because it’s potential functionality and because no source is too little or too much in marketing. Might not have the same impact, a 30 seconds ad on TV than a small billboard on a bus, but the more you get the message sent the better results you will accomplish.
Blog With Quality Contents
Blog, Blog, and Blog: Blogging is a proven effective tool in this marketing. Your blog serves as your home base with your Facebook, Twitter, and other such sites serving as feeders that bring traffic to your blog. Every new blog brings new sales and traffic opportunities. The typical consumer behavior is to read about 10 blogs before making a buying decision. It is, therefore, necessary to post one blog a day or at least once in a week for effective readership.
One of the tricks here knows your audience, your market, who you are targeting and what you want to accomplish with that. Now this has to do with some SEO or Search Engine Optimization knowledge, which is in other words, using the right keywords to rank as high as possible in a search, engine i.e. Google, Bing. It has to be related to your posts and at the same time, you have to make sure you use a keyword search tool to check the competition and number of search this given keyword has. The lowest the competition and highest number of searches it gets in a month, the more convenient for you. If you were to advertise your website holding a service of technical support chat, you would have to make the keywords very specific so people that are looking for your service would find you first.
Then we have the Social Media integration again in the blog space. There are many options to share the content of your blog. Many Content Manager Services have the social media buttons to share and like or dislike. You need to look for the options to enable them, or fond the social media Plugin, so every post of yours would have the buttons for share on Tweeter, Google+, Facebook etc. and Reblog within the blogging network you are affiliated to. With great quality and eye catching content you are encouraging people to share your stories on other media sites like the ones mentioned above plus you sharing them and there you have outstanding chances to reach a wider audience.
There are a few steps that you need to follow if you want to use it to help your business grow.
Develop A Strategic Plan: This marketing is to be executed with a strategy that encompasses your goal and the measures of success. The best plan is to develop an engagement. It should include how frequently you are going to produce content, what the voice of the business will be, and what response you expect to get from the people. It is not about hard selling, but about forging relationships. Do not overdo your sales pitch. Instead, try to gain your audience’s trust.
This marketing can be used for the long haul. You can maximize its potentials if you get help from the community, such as Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, who shares the same interests as you do. You can convince friends and their friends and colleagues to join that community, but as it grows, rules must be established.
Monitor and update your accounts regularly so as not to neglect the queries, comments and even complaints of your potential customers or existing ones. Timely responses are necessary to lower the chances of ruining customer relationships. It would even be better to attract your customers’ attention using visuals, such as beautiful or funny photos, which are often easy to share.
Engage Through Social Media. If you’re on this, be prepared to interact with your followers. This means starting conversations, responding to questions, and being friends with your customers online. Use it to forge relationships.
Avoid Hard Selling Do not use this medium as your avenue for selling. Instead, you should focus more on engaging your followers. If you don’t want them to stop following you, you should stop bombarding them with calls to action and to do something for you.
Social Media Marketing is a field where professionals and amateurs in advertising can come across and put their own ideas and plans implementing their own techniques. This knowledge that should be acquired by extensive research, it needs to be constantly employed and tested in the desired field. The percentage of people that prefer to go online on a computer or capable device versus people that watches TV grows steadily every single day. Statistics show Social Media Marketing in a lower impact percentage compared to the legacy ways for advertising, but the potential it has and room for growth is in no doubt overwhelming and could be much more improved and interactive than TV has been for the past decades.
Remember Good Contents is a King : Good content is an important part of communication thru any website, and now that social media is fast becoming the standard in Internet marketing, online marketers now also have to learn how to write good content for social media sites. In order for your social media marketing efforts to be effective, you need to make sure your status updates on Facebook and your tweets on Twitter are all tag-worthy. Your website should also contain valuable content that will benefit and interest readers, and your blog should also provide engaging discussions. Thus, when people see them, they will like it and will thus be compelled to pass it along.
The addition of social media marketing makes writing content a bit more challenging. You have to write content that the audience will pick up, but since social media activity can also help improve your page rankings, the content should also be good enough to be picked up by search engines. This can be tricky, but with the right tips, you’ll find yourself churning out viral blog posts and tweets that people would want to retweet.
 Rob G Iraheta : http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Rob_G_Iraheta/1444433