Social Media Marketing (SMM) – is it really all that?
In short, yes… and no. Depending on your industry of course. It’s everywhere we look and while posting 2-3 times a week on Facebook used to be trendy, it is already an old fashioned notion. The industry has boomed, then exploded, becoming a vital part of company marketing.
The best way to attack this is a 3 step process, so let’s break it down to the important things.
STEP 1: Is it right for my business… SMM can be applied to most industries but realistically, not to all. Industries such as accountants, forensic scientists and the like need not apply. Any other business where you speak to your market visually, through promotions, information and offers, SMM definitely applies to you – particularly if you operate on a global scale. Fashion, landscaping, auctioneers, advertising, movies, restaurants, furniture, conferences, venues, hotels and car detailers… just to name a few.
STEP 2: Where do I start… In our business, the first thing we do is sit down with our clients and do an audit on their current marketing and how they promote to their customers. This helps us to understand their business and establish who their target market is, regarding age, gender, location, interests etc. From there, we can assess and create a strategy for SMM and what mediums to use, which brings us to step 3.
STEP 3: Which mediums do I use?? The all important question. There is Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Youtube, Vimeo and more. Combinations of the above apply to different industries.
Let’s take fashion for an example. Firstly, with Instagram, you need to post regularly – between 5-7 posts a week. As you gain more followers, it’s recommended you increase your posts to between 3-5 posts a day - these can be a combination of photos and videos. Apply alongside correct hashtags, liking other pages, commenting on your feed and reposting other trending posts, to be an Instagram success. If you're selling fashion products, it is a good idea to identify ‘Instagram influencers’ who would be willing to do a shout-out of your brand to extend your reach to their Instagram followers as well. We also recommend you link your Instagram and Facebook accounts to ensure maximum reach. Along with Instagram, Facebook is the best social media platform to post and you can also do paid and targeted ads to reach your market even further. Finally, ensure you are not only maintaining a blog, but hiring vloggers (video bloggers) and where possible, paid endorsement from industry leaders.
That may seem like a lot but but the fashion industry is a highly competitive market and if you are not constantly communicating with your target audience, you are simply losing market share.
Instigating SMM, is like Google AdWords. If you decide to test the waters and try a few things here and there, you will end up with misguided enquirers/exposure and more importantly, money down the drain without boosted sales. You really do need to seek counsel from an industry expert. There is a lot of businesses out there spruking their worth, offering you roses, rainbows and lollipops to use them to increase your business – so ensure you research your SMM partner well, to get the best service for your needs.