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Social Media Marketing 101

Social media marketing is a way of utilizing social media platforms in order to drive traffic to your online business and bring awareness about a product or service. There are a few keys to master in social media in order to build a successful business.

If You Build It They Will Come

A way toward creating an online community that stays engaged with your brand is to provide original content to users that is both meaningful and useful.

When you press enter on a post on any social media platform you are creating content. Whatever that content may be, make sure that you are not wasting other people’s time. It is essential to create something meaningful for your followers that is beneficial to them. This is called creating content that actually matters. It takes time growing a community though, so be patient. Just keep providing online users with information they may be seeking, and you will gain a positive reputation.

A blog is a simple way to post related content about a product or service. Weekly updates can be all the difference in attracting and maintaining loyal followers. A blog also gives a voice to a company.

Black Sheep, a shock and awe publicity company, utilizes a blog on their main site to provide valuable commentary in related industries and to connect with Houston residents. The blog gives readers a behind the scenes look at the firm. They have curated a series of posts that have helped to develop a following.

Dictate The Conversation

If you don’t like what’s being said, then change the subject. With social media, companies are able to engage with their customers and project the image they wish to present and maintain with the public.

Hopefully your audience will relay your message to others in the form of word-of-mouth. A personal recommendation from a friend or family member adds credibility to a company because it is not the company that is talking itself up, it is real people.

When Apple revealed the iPhone back in 2007, a buzz of excitement formed around the device, and the company was able to get free publicity out of it that would have otherwise cost them millions. You just can’t buy that kind of media attention. There was so much intrigue about the phone that it was the talk of the town. Many tech sites and blogs featured articles dedicated to the upcoming phone. This was all overwhelmingly positive feedback for the company and helped to reinforce the brand’s image.

The Democratization of Marketing

Social media marketing is valuable to anyone with access to an Internet connection and to anyone who is able to invest a great amount of time. It allows companies to stay engaged with their audience and form connections. This relatively inexpensive way of showcasing your brand compared to other methods of advertising is great for small companies with a limited budget. It allows for a even playing field in the online world.

Social media platforms

During the recession of 2007 many companies cut their marketing and advertising budgets in order to stay afloat. This led to companies having to find new ways to publicize their services. Since social media is free it is a perfect way to capture potential customers and form brand loyalty.

Leave A Breadcrumb Trail

The power of links is that they drive traffic toward your business and allow online users to visit a products webpage. To spark interest in these links, sell the emotional experience that an audience can relate to, instead of just simply telling people about a particular brand’s service. Make your online engagement about the customer, not yourself.

Many giant news publications have online counterparts that feature articles. The share button on these articles is a very powerful tool because it increases the chances that content may be shared with others. Companies can then build relationships with users when they serve their interest with relevant material.

Many movie studios will host seemingly unrelated landing pages for upcoming films in hopes that the sites will gain interest and go viral. The webpages usually feature links that take a user to the films actual webpage. To promote The Dark Knight Rises, a site with an encrypted audio file led users to the Twitter hashtag #TheFireRises. An image attached to the site became less pixilated the more users used the hashtag, revealing the films villin, Bane.

Listen To Your Audience

It is important to be an active listener on social media. See what people are saying about your brand and respond in a timely manner to posts on different platforms. You can gather feedback from others on what you are doing right and what you should ax altogether. Monitoring what is really being said and not just looking at online users as statics can lead to negative responses being turned into positive ones, simply because issues are being addressed and corrected.

The computer company Dell lets employees personally answer concerns from customers via social media. This shows negative commenters that there is an actual person behind the company and this helps to humanize the brand.

In 2012, when a UPS truck hit a cyclist, the company’s social media team contacted the man after he took to Twitter to vent. UPS demonstrated tactfulness when dealing with the situation, because they resolved the matter immediately. The cyclist was impressed with the company’s fast response to the accident.

The digital age is still a relatively new frontier, but their are some basic fundamentals when it comes to social media. Content creating, directing the conversation, accessibility, link building, and simply listening are all tools that should be utilized when trying to breakthrough to an audience.

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