One of the major benefits of using social media is the ability to reach a large audience without spending loads of money or time. On Friday at The SMART Show in Chicago, Steve Robinson of Constant Contact talked about how to get the most out of your social media marketing.
According to Robinson, a Nielsen survey revealed that 78 percent of consumers most trust third-party recommendations when they’re choosing a product or service to buy. Some of those people are getting their recommendations from friends, but more and more are going online to Yelp, Google, and other sites for them. So spreading positive messaging via social media can be a huge way to convince shoppers to come to you.
Here are some of Robinson’s tips for making social media work for you:
- Don’t assume you have to be on Facebook. Your most important social media tool is where your customers and prospects are, which varies according to location, target market, and other factors. It may be Facebook, but it may not be.
- Instead of trying to use 4 or 5 social networks at once, focus on one. When you feel you’ve mastered it, move on to another.
- If you’re not offering an excellent customer experience, fix that before you start social media marketing. Otherwise, people aren’t going to post good things about you.
- Set measurable goals — how many Twitter followers or Facebook likes you want to gain, how many of your posts you want to see shared or retweeted, how many website hits you want to get, or how much face-to-face business you want to generate. The goal itself doesn’t matter as much as that it’s measurable.
- You don’t have to come up with all your content. A lot can be retweeted or shared from elsewhere. Some needs to be original, but you can also be an aggregator who finds information that will be interesting to the people in your network.
- If you share a great offer, make sure you can fulfill it. The worst thing you can do is attract a lot of attention with a great offer and then not be able to meet the demand, and end up creating a negative customer experience.