The 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report from Social Media Examiner has been released, answering questions about what’s on the mind of 3,000 marketers when it comes to social media marketing. Lee Odden over at TopRank blog, breaks the report down into 5 top questions:
- What social tactics are most effective? – 90%
- What are the best ways to engage my audience with social media? – 88%
- How do I measure the return on my social media investment? – 87%
- What are the best social management tools? – 84%
- How do I create a social strategy? – 83%
These questions are interesting because the industry is evolving so quickly — keeping up on trends and tactics is vital to recognizing the breadth of what may be possible for a particular industry and organization. Also, what works for one company, may not work for another, but sharing can lead to new ideas. Other than super standout executions, there could be more sharing by marketers in terms of what has worked and what hasn’t. The other questions — measurement, tools and strategy — all flow from wanting to know the best ways to use social media to help the organization reach its objectives.
What questions do you have about social media?
Happy New Year! Here are 6 resolutions that you can make to improve your Internet marketing in 2013. Best wishes for 2013!
1. Be More Consistent
Providing valuable content and information is key to any online marketing strategy. Amazing content helps increase your reputation as an expert in your field and connects you to potential customers who are interested in what you say. But posting sporadically can mean that people forget to visit you regularly as a resource. One of the hardest parts of any content strategy is actually producing the content. Set a goal for how often you can realistically post, and stick with it.
Social media is not a one-way communication method. Your customers and potential customers are sharing valuable insights into what they want right in front of you. You can learn a lot just by listening to these conversations to learn about concerns, problems and new ideas. Your customers may not be very vocal on the major social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter, but there probably are niche networks where they are active. Look for discussion groups and networks on industry publications and associations, and just listen to the conversations for key insights.
3. Have Conversations
Unlike other communication channels, social media gives you the opportunity to have one-on-one conversations with customers, peers and industry experts. Relationships are built over time, by sharing ideas and thoughts. Use social media to connect with people you’ve met in person (or people you’d like to meet). Share and comment on what other’s are posting. Conversations can go a long way to building a lasting, productive relationship.
4. Connect the Dots
Marketing is still marketing and you’re in business to sell. At the end of the day, the job of online marketing is still to get the right message in front of the right people at the right time. Remember to use relevant offers and calls to action within your content to connect the dots. I’m not talking about spamming or throwing ads all over your content. But if 80-90% of your content is informative and valuable, 10-20% can be about your products and services. Too much advertising turns people off, but if you leave out what you’re selling and how to take the next step, you’re missing an opportunity to market to people who have shown interest in what you sell.
5. Think from Customer’s Viewpoint
Business owners tend to be excited about their businesses (if they aren’t, why be in businesss?). We get caught up in all the cool things, features, add-ons, and extras that we can provide for customers. But customers only care about what’s in it for them. Instead of lauding the features you can provide, put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think about what benefits and value those features provide. Take the next step and only talk about those benefits and value — it will go a long way to connecting what you do with what’s in it for them.
6. Measure What Matters
Measuring is always important to me. Reading Lee Odden’s post, Happy New Year! 11 Lessons Learned After 9 Years of Business Blogging, reminded me to add it to my own list. Measurement is at the heart of making marketing strategies that work. But, you have to measure what matters. Measurement tends to drive action. If you only measure how many Twitter followers you have, you’ll be influenced to try to increase that number. Don’t get caught up in meaningless numbers. Figure out what you’re trying to accomplish with your online marketing, and then find metrics which will help you guage how well you’re doing.
What about you? What are your Internet marketing resolutions for 2013?
People trust what their peers say over what companies say and most people do online research before hiring, purchasing, or even dating. Even if you’re not online, there may be reviews about you or your company. How can you protect your online reputation? It comes down to pumping out positive content via blogs and social media, as well as asking for positive reviews from your network. This infographic from InventHelp has more…
Infographic brought to you by InventHelp
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