How to Use Social Media Marketing for Your Brand

Social Media Marketing as a stand-alone strategy for marketing your business is no longer effective.  What attracted so many small businesses to it in the first place (“it’s free!”) is now our downfall.

In the Mid-Ohio Valley, many of us benefit from the fact that we are a small community, therefore our “six degrees of separation” is, in all reality, around 2-3 degrees at most.  This allows us to “friend hoard” online – where the majority of local Facebook users have thousands of “friends” – some of which we know only through our degrees of separation on a digital-only basis, and others we “friend” because we met them once, at a picnic, and they are the cousin of your friend’s brother’s step-sister.

This trend, added with the fact that Facebook announced only 3% of page followers actually see the content on that page (and analytics don’t lie!), then that is even more eye-opening that social media can’t be your sole marketing strategy.

 

The good news is, social media allows your business to leverage one of the hottest 2016 marketing trends: showcasing the human side of your business.  Through social media, you can connect with your audience, tell them stories, answer their questions, thank them for their business, and so much more.

 

If you’re ready to discover how social media can partner with other marketing strategies to spotlight your business in the best possible light, contact us today!

Surprised businesswoman making selfie photo on smartphone. Wearing in blue shirt and glasses. Standing over gray background

Laughing businesswoman making selfie photo on smartphone. Wearing in blue shirt and glasses. Standing over gray background

Funny businesswoman making selfie photo on smartphone. Wearing in blue shirt and glasses. Standing over gray background

HAVE FUN WITH YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA!

Use Marketing Automation with Caution

Though the team at InSilico Media Group is a fan of marketing automation, we use it with caution, and with good reason.

It is true that marketing automation will make your budget more effective, because one of the greatest strengths of email automation tools has always been the amount of time it frees up for marketers. Such tools allow users to spend less time (and money) on “grunt work” like creating and distributing emails, and more on creating quality, engaging content to go in those emails. Marketing automation extends that benefit to your whole marketing program.

Many small businesses think automating marketing efforts, spending one day per month or quarter on their marketing, is more beneficial. “Set it and forget it” is the motto – making business owners believe they will have plenty of free time in the future to run their businesses without putting much additional effort into marketing.

However, I advise to automate wisely.  Just as the old saying goes, “too much of a good thing can be a bad thing”, automation can go from very good for your business, to very bad, in just a matter of one or two missteps.

First, often messages can miss the intended outcome of their creators. Sometimes individuals can get placed on lists, without actually being interested. Case-in-point, if you’re attending a trade show, it is a great idea to purchase the list to do pre-show marketing campaigns. However, if you automate post-show marketing campaigns at the same time, you may be sending “it was great to see you!” messages to individuals that had a change of plans and were not able to attend.  Our tip here is to only automate pre-show messages.  Individuals that are on that list have only specified they are interested in attending the event.  Taking the time to collect email addresses while at the show, whether through “old school” methods of collecting business cards, or making the small investment in a contact capturing tool to scan their badges will help you build a list of consumers that were in your booth, to make your post-show marketing make sense.

Second, often prospects turn into customers. Yet, if you have automated your marketing too far in advance, prospects may convert to paying customers, but still receive emails asking them to purchase from you.  Case-in-point, our agency was in need of a debt collection agency to partner with for some of our outstanding invoices that were not being paid.  After multiple email marketing campaigns, one agency really stuck out to me.  Last week, I signed a contract to partner with them.  This morning, I received an email, again trying to convince me to pick their agency, describing their 3-step collection process, which is why I decided to partner with them in the first place.

Third, consequent emails may contain the same sales pitch, leaving your customers doubting whether the products or services you offer are truly valuable.  As an extension of my second point, I am now wondering how their post-collection database is managed.  If they are not managing their B2B sales database, will they continue to send collection notices to individuals once the debt is paid?  I am now doubting the credibility of a company I am entrusting to collect my outstanding invoice debt.  On the one hand, I am impressed they have such great follow-up methods, but on the other hand, I am now worried they will be borderline harassing should they not manage their debtor database.

 

In conclusion, if you are going to automate, then ensure you automate carefully, test frequently and fine tune as new errors are brought to your attention. It’s important – you are marketing to increase your reach and your pocketbook. Your processes need to be right more times than they are wrong.

If you’re thinking about marketing automation in lieu of hiring a professional team, let’s talk. Our affordable marketing services for small businesses may be what you’re looking for, and we promise – we automate AND manage campaigns with care.