Social media can be time consuming and unrewarding at times, certainly for those who have used traditional outbound methods for years and are now struggling to convert across to the newer inbound methods that lots of businesses are turning to today.
Where should I start?
How much time do you invest?
How much money is expected for the return on investment?
What platforms should I use?
These are all great questions that you will need to answer in your marketing plan, but if time is stopping you from using social media on a daily basis, then you won’t go wrong with this simple 4-point plan (in no particular order).
- Schedule – you need to keep your accounts ‘live’. Take the opportunity to schedule in content that needs to be delivered throughout the day that you won’t have the opportunity to do later. Scheduling helps you save time and be better organized online, so plan ahead for your week if you can. Scheduling posts on Facebook is free, and other services are available for other platforms. If you are a worldwide company, think about scheduling during the night too to help you conquer the time difference and keep your global fans engaged. Remember, posting something is better than nothing.
- Respond – the whole point of social media is to build up engagement and nurture relationships, and nothing does this better than online conversation. Respond to everything and everyone that mentions you. Research those who follow you or share your content. Take the time to learn about them and what they like to interact with online. Ask questions and try and find the opportunity that could be in that contact. The better you know your audience, the better off you will be.
- Listen – most platforms have search facilities so you can really drill down topics and conversations. Think outside the box and actively listen. Know what’s going on in your community and what’s trending. Get to know your neighboring businesses. Whatever your business is, your audience is out there, you just need to look around and listen before you speak.
- Test & Measure – taking the time to test and measure your social media is essential and something a large percentage of businesses fail to do. Testing various campaigns, times, headings and content will allow you to know exactly what you should be spending your precious time on in the future. Measure all of your marketing and repeat those that work and question those that haven’t. Study the interactions and engagement to see what it is your audience likes (no pun intended).
The four points above will keep you focused on your accounts and your content. Like anything though, the more you invest in it the more you will get back. Take the time to see if you could fit more online marketing into your daily schedule and start conversing with a brand new audience.
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By: Stuart Baddiley