How to stand out in the crowd of social marketers
January 09, 2012
As sensational as social media is, its rising popularity ensures a number of challenges to marketers moving into the new year. It used to be the case that original content with effective keyword strategies would be enough to attract a decent swath of friends and followers. Now, however, the ability to get noticed within the social sphere is increasingly about finances.
"Basically if you want exposure on Facebook now you need to pay," writes Niall Harbison for the blog Simply Zesty. "Simple as that. Facebook has done a wonderful job of locking every area of the platform down so as it controls most of the ad revenue that flows through it. Even the feed is getting harder to access and with ads coming there this month things will get even harder."
This underscores the role of advertising on social networks - an already heated concept in many recesses of Silicon Valley. But there are other tactics small business marketers can adopt to boost or optimize their exposure.
For one, measure analytics that matter to your core audience and your advertising strategy. If you have been tracking "number of followers" as a key metric, consider focusing on something more useful such as "number of interactions, number or positive mentions, number of sales queries."
"If you can demonstrate a growth in these figures, it'll be easier to make a business case to dedicate more time to specific platforms that impact the bottom line," writes Fred Caballero for Channelship.
Also, don't forget the power of offline marketing and advertising. People get so caught up in the technological sensation of social media and mobile tech that they forget about direct mail, print advertising, quick-response codes, radio, TV, etc. Of course, traditional channels are often more expensive and time-consuming, but if effectively tailored to your audience you can easily stand out among your rivals.
"Complement all current gaps in customer interaction with online interaction," Caballero adds. "As a result, your customer or prospects will keep you fresh in their heads."
Finally, understand where your audience is coming from. This is also imperative for determining your online-offline balance, but it can also help save you time, money and other resources to narrow your mailing lists, email chains and social promotions.