Nowadays, you can’t help but to notice the growing presence of Social Media networks. Whether you are on the Internet or offline watching TV you are certain to be presented with an instruction to go Follow or Like some brand or cause. In addition, your friends and even some of your competitors are continuously trying to direct your attention to their own social media pages. It becomes obvious to you that this relatively new channel is a growing and viable one that can be used to market your own brand.
You have now decided to get on board the Social Media train and start your own marketing programme. You create your social media network accounts, select someone to manage them for you and await the social media business benefits to pour in. Your first few Likes and Followers begin to come in and a feeling of excitement sets in each time you get that electronic sound indicating some activity on your Social Media account. As days turn to weeks and weeks to months, the time span between each electronic sounds begin to widen. Furthermore, you begin to wonder if you have wasted your time, as you are uncertain of what success should like. There are many business owners who are currently stuck at this stage of their social media marketing programme and are unclear as to how to move forward.
The solution to move forward is actually to first move backward. That’s right! You need to step back from your programme a bit and ask yourself the following questions:
- What do I want to achieve from engaging in Social Media marketing? Your answer to this question will tell what your Social Media goals ought to be. The possible realistic goals range from generating leads to becoming an industry thought leader. Whatever your goal, it must be established before beginning any social media marketing activity. Furthermore, your social media marketing goals should be aligned with your overall business goals.
- Who do I want to engage with on Social Media? A well thought out answer to this question will result in a more precise selection of the social media networks that best fit your target audience.
- What information must I communicate? Subsequent to defining who you are targeting, an analysis of their informational needs will lead to the answer to this question. It is important to note that this is a major shift in the marketing approach of most businesses. Your content focus must now be customer rather than product centric.
- How do I measure success? In answering this question, you must refer to question #1 above. Using the goals established you should now specify the most appropriate measures or key performance indicators (KPIs) that you need to monitor in order to keep score of your social media marketing performance. Some common KPIs include engagement rate, post reach, fan and follower growth and page visits.
After providing the most appropriate answers to each question listed above you are now ready to re-start your social media marketing programme. You are now in a position to select the social networks where your target market is and to communicate relevant and engaging messages to that group. Ultimately, you will also be able to determine if your efforts are paying off based on the performance metrics you are measuring.
Good luck on your social media marketing efforts. We would love to receive your feedback and/or questions.