On Wednesday at Search Engine Strategies, New York, Li Evans delivered a solo presentation called “Social Media 101″. The foundation of her talk was “Social media is everywhere.” As the author of Social Media Marketing: Strategies for Engaging in Facebook, Twitter & Other Social Media and CEO of Libeck Integrated Marketing, Evans understands how and why businesses might want to learn more about social marketing.
Social marketing “gives us a way to talk back”, she stated. The Internet is no longer about one-way communication. People are voicing their opinions more and this provides many marketing opportunities to companies who want to know what you’re listening to, reading, researching and purchasing. Companies know that when something is valuable, it will be shared.
Sharing of information is nearly everywhere today and constant. Some examples are instant messaging, social profiles, message boards, forums, blogs, and social sites. “When people share, Google shares.” Be careful when you jump into any search marketing strategy. Do your research. What you do is just as important as where you do it. Where a community is talking about your company is important to consider. Medical industries are not the place for Facebook.
Social marketing is far more than Twitter and Facebook messages. Other outlets may fit your businesses needs much better. For example, “Do it yourself” and “how to” videos are quite popular in YouTube. Market your product by submitting video. Other ideas are event sharing, geo social and photo sharing Know what your audience does.
- Creators – writers of original content
- Critics – post ratings, reviews, product reviews
- Collectors – Digg, articles sites
- Joiners – profile makers, visitors of social media marketing sites
- Spectators – read blogs, watch videos **Most people start here and stay there
What are your goals? Goals are different than metrics. Look for engagement and things to measure with video views, Twitter “followers”, “favorited”, the number of negative reviews, new users to a forum, replies to forum posts, subscribers, friends to profiles, answers to questions, re-tweets, links and more. Pull it all together with things like pivot tables, charts, word documents, excel spreadsheets and summaries of engagement.
4 Pillars of Social Media Marketing
The foundation to help build social marketing plan consists of:
Who are the “Influencers”? Is what you’re doing working? If you can’t build an audience, you may need to build a different channel. You can’t lurk or just watch and hope that people will engage with you. Goals include lifting market share, branding, increasing sales, customer service, etc. Who is the audience? Is it different offline thank online? Are you missing opportunities? Where is your audience coming from? What are they saying about you? How do they communicate and share?
Interestingly, the fastest growing segment of Facebook users are women over 45. The Facebook game, Farmville, has 50 million users per month. Li suggested trying Metacafe, Daily Motion, Snapfish, Photobucket, Flickr, Picasa, Blinks and YouTube as other marketing channels.