If you are using social media tools for your marketing, you have most likely asked, “Can I get business with social media marketing?” I get that question from folks a couple times a week. Or the complaints that people have been using social media for a year or so and have not actually gotten business from it.
Social media is one tool in your sales and marketing tool box and saying that you expect to get business from using one tool like Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter, is like saying you are going to build a house with nothing else but a screwdriver. It can probably be done by a very talented person, but it will take a long time and a lot more work than using a combination of tools.
Here are 12 tools that you should load into your box to get business with social media marketing or make converting social media LIKES and FOLLOWS into DOLLARS!
This is a critical power tool that will not only provide you with regular keyword rich content coming from your site for people to find, but it also gives your social media sites something to promote. If you are still putting it off because you don’t have time or you don’t know what to blog about, it might be time to hire a content creator. It is that important. If you want a few ideas of what to blog about, check out this post—> 30 Things to Write About When You Don’t Know What to Say.
You need to have things that keep your website visitors on your site and entering your sales funnel so you can work to convert them into clients and customers. Perhaps you can create an eBook (It doesn’t have to be a novel. Write about a topic you get a lot of questions on providing detailed answers in 5-10 pages.) Create a checklist of items that would be of high value to your visitors. Record a webinar or video that only these visitors can view when they provide you with their email address.
Now take those offers and create a page of content that tells about the offer and has a form that people fill out providing their name and email, or maybe a phone number (It better be HIGH value for me to give my phone number.) Have your website manager load the landing page (very simple) and connect it to your email marketing system, whether that is a custom system or one like Mailchimp or Constant Contact.
Once you have people giving you their email address in exchange for something of value that you have provided, you know they have an interest in your products or services. You can segment your email lists based on what they downloaded or what information they provided so you can now follow up with more specific information that is targeting problems they might be experiencing and showing how you are providing that solution.
You can look up the people who are downloading your offers and see if you can find them on Twitter, along with anyone else you would like to target. Twitter allows you to connect with people you may not be able to reach otherwise and begin to establish a relationship. You can also target the content you send out on Twitter to address some of the same problems or challenges you know they have based on the information they have downloaded. Continue to send new connections to your landing pages to start that cycle again.
Video is king in the marketing world right now and most organizations still have not embraced it with a sense of urgency like they should. There a few things to realize. Video results will be in the top search results for almost every search. Google had posted that of the top 100 searches, video will appear 70% of the time. When you load your videos to YouTube, you are taking advantage of the second largest search engine in the world (just behind Google….and YouTube is owned by Google). If you plan your short videos to address specific questions that people are asking on Google, it will likely rank higher than a text answer on your website. If you have your video transcribed after you load it and then load the word document back into the YouTube closed caption area, you now provide a value add for your viewers as well as extra “Google Juice” for the search engines to find that content. If you don’t know how to film or edit video and you have a very limited budget, look into using Google Hangouts On Air. You can record yourself or up to 10 people having a conversation (like your own TV show) and it loads to YouTube automatically when you finish. No editing necessary most of the time and if you do need to edit a bit at the beginning or end, you can do that easily using YouTube’s editing tools that are built in.
LinkedIn bought SlideShare in May 2012 to add a more interactive and visual tool to your LinkedIn profile and this is turning out to be another power tool in your marketing tool box. Create a marketing presentation using PowerPoint, Keynote or my personal favorite, HaikuDeck and then load it to SlideShare and link it to your LinkedIn profile. Explain how something works in 10-15 slides with your contact information and more about the services your company provides on the last slide. Make the slides BEAUTIFUL. Don’t pack them with tiny font and more bullets than a Die Hard movie. Use beautiful images and colorful charts or graphs. The visuals will captivate, the information will draw them to you. If you struggle to make great presentations, check out Presentation Zen or HaikuDeck.
With over 1.4 BILLION users on Facebook, this is usually a spot you want to occupy, both to be found and to provide a place for people to post questions, discussions about your product or services, get tips and resources from you or to learn more about those offers you have created. Your goal on Facebook is to show your expertise and listening skills and then invite people to visit your website, blog or those landing pages.
Instagram is where all of our teenagers and young adults went when their parents got on Facebook and creeped them out. If your target market includes anyone under the age of 30, you should at least be checking out this visual phenom. Your brand can use this platform to allow people to peek behind the curtain of your business and see your team hard at work, or the events you attend. You can showcase your products or show how you provide great service. This platform is a bit more casual than your LinkedIn or maybe even your Facebook page. Have fun with great photos that you snap around your office. Share a graphic showing an event or promotion you are running, showcase your fans and all the fun you have with them.
Even though there has been speculation as to the future of Google Plus and the lack of participation on this platform, the content you place here is still showing up pretty high in search results. Of course if you spend time building and nurturing relationships there, you will reap the benefits of on Google Plus just like you do on any site that you spend time connecting with people.
This site continues to amaze many in marketing because of the rapid growth in users (70 Million users as of 7/10/13) as well as the amount of traffic that this site sends to websites with the intent to convert. Think of it this way, we don’t log into Facebook thinking, “I wonder what my favorite brands have to sell me today.” We log into Facebook to see what our crazy cousin Eddie is up to. But many people log into Pinterest to find great shoes (okay maybe that’s just me) or recipes for a dinner party, decor for their home and more. When done right, your Pinterest account can drive people directly to the point of purchase and if posting regularly there, you will see conversions, or at least an increase in traffic with an attempt to convert. (47% of US online shoppers have purchased something as a result of Pinterest)
A fabulous smartphone
Yes this is a necessary tool to manage all of these sites as well as taking photos that you will share on your social media sites. Today's smart phones have incredible cameras (look for devices with 10+ megapixels if you are in the market for a new phone) and apps that allow you to manage everyone of the tools mentioned here. I live on my Samsung Galaxy S4 and my iPad and with the ability to tether my internet service through my phone to my iPad (mobile hotspot service via Verizon), there is nothing I can't do on the road that I can while at my desk.
So what other tools are you using?
We'd love to hear about the other tools you are using to convert more of your social media efforts into paying customers.