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How to Use Social Marketing for Business Growth

Are you using Social Marketing?

So what exactly is Social Marketing? In simple terms, social marketing is like using word of mouth on rattlerecords a very grand scale. It provides an excellent top of funnel platform for attracting new clients directly and indirectly. It can turn friends, prospects, and customers into your best sales staff.

Most business owners and managers are familiar with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media sites. Most are also familiar with the goal to get fans, likes, shares, follows, retweets, and etc. The trick is knowing just how to implement a strategy to obtain the goal. Social marketing is not just an extension of traditional advertising and marketing or a website.

Social marketing is a vast opportunity for interactivity and takes advantage of the natural motivation of people for sharing and reciprocity. The interactivity of the visitor naturally turns them into sales and lead generation referral partners. As opposed to pushing out traditional sales-hype driven content this new marketing channel allows a company to interact with the visitor and leverage the interaction to dramatically increase brand awareness, lead generation, and sales.

In addition to the more common techniques used to grow fans, friends, followers, and etc. (to be covered later) a higher converting method of using Social Marketing is a referral program. A smart referral program can short cut the funnel time cycle and create pre-qualified leads along with additional advocates for your brand.

Ideally a referral program works in conjunction with your social media sites as well as your other online properties. Any web page, landing or sales page, or even a Facebook tab can be used in the process. Take a look at the offer image to the left. See the “Invite Friends, Get $10”? This link, when clicked, asks the visitor to enter an email address. It could also drive them to a Facebook tab page where the visitor will “like” the page and receive an offer. This offer then provides the visitor with an opportunity to receive an additional reward for sending a reward link to a friend. Here is a sample post that an interested visitor might use.

“I love my new XYZ software. Here is a link to see it for yourself and to get 20% off! domain.com X466C677 ”

A referral campaign should always be used in a funnel. A popular funnel is one that starts with a website visitor originating from a referral, SEO, social marketing, or other traffic generation technique. The visitor or customer is then prompted to visit a social marketing site. The social site contains a link or page for a referral offer. This technique is popular as it contains several funnel entry points throughout the process.

Depending on whether you’re a B2B, B2C, Ecommerce, or other form of online company, you’ll want to test offers and sharing channels to get the best results. Email should always be included in the funnel. All companies should also include Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and if your B2B LinkedIn. Be careful not to confuse the visitor by providing too many options or offers. Try to keep the number of channels in the stream to under 4.

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