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How to Guarantee Your Social Media Marketing Won’t Work

Posted Wed, October 15, 2014 by Julie Short

Lots of online marketers like to argue about whether social media works or not. It’s an interesting discussion, but it misses the point – with hundreds of millions of people using social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ every day, the question isn’t whether social media marketing works but how.


In fact, the only reason there is any debate at all on this topic is because so many organizations are handling social media so badly. If you want to follow in their example, and spend lots of time and money on social accounts that aren’t going to earn you any return, then you just need to follow a few easy steps.


Here is what you can do to guarantee your social media marketing absolutely won’t work:

  1. Invest time and money into social media without a goal. Just deciding to “try social media” without any defined goal is a perfect way to flush your time and money down the drain. Without a specific target audience, or conversion goal, you’re basically hoping you’ll get results by accident.
  2. Post material you wouldn’t read. There are tons of low-quality content being posted to social sites every day, with no one bothering to read the updates or pay any attention. Dumping more into the world is like the Internet marketing equivalent of littering, but lots of companies still do it.
  3. Go dark for long periods of time. When you stop posting to your social accounts, your fans and customers don’t assume you’ve gotten really busy, they tend to think you don’t have anything interesting to say (or possibly that you’ve gone out of business altogether). That’s a good way to lose subscribers and get people to stop paying attention.
  4. Use your soapbox for sales pitches. You’ve probably never met anyone who watches television for the commercials, but lots of marketers can’t seem to get past the idea that thousands of users are going to flock to their blatant marketing messages disguised as social posts.
  5. Only use one channel or content type. All the social channels and websites have value, but you can feel free to limit yourself to one or two favorites if you don’t care about reaching as many potential customers as possible.
  6. Keep using the same tactics again and again. Even though we all know things constantly change on the Internet, and especially in the exploding field of social media marketing, lots of businesses like to stick with what they’ve always done, get declining results, and then wonder what happened.


Although we are being a little tongue-in-cheek with this post, it underscores a few important details. Social media marketing is valuable, but only if you commit to doing things the right way and stay involved through a consistent series of campaigns. Are you ready to start getting bigger results from social?


The team at WebRevelation can help you get more from social media, Internet advertising, and business web design. Call our San Antonio office today at 817-283-3324 to request a free consultation.

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : social media , marketing


How to Stop Social Media Trends from Passing You By

Posted Wed, August 13, 2014 by Julie Short

For the past few years, business owners and marketers have known that social media is a game-changer when it comes to reaching out to new clients and establishing brand loyalty. But, the opportunities that social networking sites present come with a cost that's hard to ignore: not only does your social activity itself take a bit of time, but keeping up with the latest trends and ideas feels like a part-time job all on its own.

In other words, you can't make the most of social media marketing if you don't stay on top of the latest trends, but you can't spend all of your time figuring out what's going on with Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn either.

To help you stay tuned into the social world, and especially the best practices in the industry, here are seven quick tips you can use to stop social media trends from passing you by:

1. Listen and learn. You can learn a lot just by hanging out with other business owners (or tech-savvy teenagers) and learning about what they're doing.

2. Track the most popular hashtags on Twitter. The biggest and most important trends will almost always have an accompanying storm of hashtagged tweets announcing and following them.

3. Get to know the G+ influencers in your industry. Likewise, the biggest news on social media is going to be discussed by industry experts. You can often learn more on Google +, which allows for more substantial content than Twitter, so follow a few people you can learn from.

4. Get plugged in to LinkedIn Groups. LinkedIn discussion groups are a largely-untapped gold mine of information and advice. It only takes a moment to join one, and the benefits could last for years.

5. Play with your apps and toys. There is no teacher like experience, and simply experimenting with social websites (and the accompanying apps) can be a great way to get to know them.

6. Attend a conference or training event. If you can devote a few hours to social media marketing, consider attending an event or workshop. You'll learn expert tips in a condensed format.

7. Subscribe to blogs like this one. An informative blog post is also a great way to absorb a lot of information in a quick, easy-to-understand format. Subscribe to a few (like ours) and you'll have a head start on learning everything you need to know.



While it is true that social media changes quickly, it's a myth that you have to spend all of your time on social sites to use them effectively. Instead, you just have to know where to look to find the highlights. Spend a few minutes a day following these tips and you'll be up to speed in no time.

Looking for a business web design and Internet marketing partner that understands what it takes to get results? Call WebRevelation today at 817-283-3324 and find out what we can do for your bottom line.

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM , Tips and Tricks | 
Tags : social media


6 Ways to Generate Leads with Social Media

Posted Wed, April 9, 2014 by Julie Short

We’ve discussed the benefits of claiming social media accounts for small businesses – and now we’re back on it to get into the specifics.


When it’s used effectively, social media has the potential to take your business to the next level. While the ultimate goal of social engagement and sharing is to convert leads into paying customers, the initial goal is to generate more leads to give your company a wide base of potential clients. If you’re an old pro at social media, you already know that having a meaningful network is much more useful than having thousands of followers or likes that you pay for. Before you can focus on conversion, you have to focus on establishing a solid following.


The good news: social media platforms are so wide-ranging and extensively used that they provide businesses with unprecedented opportunities to attract a broad consumer base. Below are some of our best tips for generating leads via social media platforms.


1. Build relationships.
Consumers tend to patronize businesses with which they feel a personal connection. Consumers want to know that you listen to them and will respond to their needs. Along that line of thinking, an easy way to build relationships using social media is to be responsive. Always respond to customer comments on your Facebook page, Twitter account, or blog – even if (especially if) they’re not flattering. Courteous, helpful responses from you will encourage people to keep coming back to your feed – and they often attract your followers’ friends as well. On the other hand, neglecting your pages makes you seem cold or unconcerned about your customers’ needs.


2. Cultivate your presence.
When you’re able to get someone’s contact information, be proactive about generating leads with it. Send out regular emails or even text messages with updates and deals to entice people to visit your web page or social media accounts. Millennials in particular tend to appreciate being recruited. They are aware that they have multiple options for goods and services, and a large part of their decisions rests upon how earnestly you try to connect with them.


3. Offer incentives.
All consumers like to find good deals, and you can generate leads by offering incentives in exchange for interest in your company. Offer coupons for discounted, upgraded, or free services to those who become your Facebook friend or refer other leads. Buying followers won’t do you any good in the long run – but drawing in followers with discounted products is an effective way to create new customers.


4. Keep your social media platforms current.
An outdated site or social media account is unlikely to draw much (positive) attention; visitors who do happen upon a neglected web page or Facebook account probably won’t return because your business doesn’t seem worth patronizing. If your website needs an update, call in the pros – they’ll know how to give your site a fresh look without disrupting your functionality (in fact, they’ll probably improve it).


Keep your social accounts current by making sure that any special deals are posted and by removing information about events and specials that have ended. To keep your website humming with activity, post regularly on your blog and participate frequently on Facebook and Twitter. You can share helpful industry-related information – for example, how to choose an event-appropriate dress if you’re in the fashion industry – or company-specific updates – like the flavor of the day if you are the owner of an ice cream shop.


And lest we forget: regularly updated websites, blogs, and social media accounts perform better in search engine rankings, which usually translates to better leads and conversion rates.


5. Ask for reviews.
Strong reviews can generate more leads. Ask current or past customers if they’d be willing to write a testimonial or reviews of your company for your website or online directories. To encourage them, send out text message or email reminders after they use your services – whether they are in your brick-and-mortar store or office or made an online purchase.


Another way to get people to write reviews for you: offer discounts or incentives on your social media accounts for everyone that fills out a survey or review for you. As much as positive feedback is a good thing, you don’t want a ton of canned reviews – readers appreciate honest, authentic feedback.


6. Stay relevant.
Focus on keeping your brand consistent and unified. Be sure that your website links to each of your social media accounts, and vice versa. You don’t want to deter any potential visitors with inconsistencies. Your social media accounts can serve as a place for your business to be more personable and transparent with customers – and to reinforce your existing branding. Some potential customers might find you via social media instead of your site, so remember to feature information about your company and who to contact on your social media profiles.

 

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : leads , social media


Social Media Marketing: Essential and Within Reach for Small Business

Posted Wed, March 26, 2014 by Julie Short

Social media is here to stay, and thinking that it is just for making social connections may be a big mistake if you are a small business owner. A 2011 Nielsen report states that, “70% of active online adult social networkers shop online…12% more likely than the average adult internet user”.  The importance of social media for small business owners seems clear, so why might they shy away from being intentional regarding the use of social media? More importantly, as a small business owner, is there something more you should be doing?


Reason #1: Not Having a Plan
Many small business owners have gone at it haphazardly. They have tried to target everyone indiscriminately and ended up recruiting nobody, or they may not have known the most effective approaches, such as optimizing SEO strategies and selecting one or more platforms for their campaigns.


Solution: Hire a marketing firm to implement a social media campaign that can give the best results for the amount of money and effort invested.


Reason #2: Not Having the Time
Small business owners are working long hours already, and they may feel that they are unable to dedicate the additional hours necessary to implement an effective social media strategy. They may not realize that long hours are not necessary to see dividends in a social media campaign.


Solution: Strategize to create a targeted campaign that requires minimal hands-on work. A professional social media marketing company can assist with the initial launch of the campaign and then leave the small business owner with only small amounts of maintenance necessary as time passes. The use of local online directories allows customers to promote small businesses without too much effort or time on the part of the owner.


Reason #3: Thinking it Unnecessary
They may think that social media is optional and that they can continue growing their businesses without it. They may be unaware of the role and the possibilities of successful social media usage.


Solution: Research….look for case studies of small businesses that have implemented a social media strategy with positive results. They should see convincing data on the increase in sales or profits after the use of social media compared to before. In addition, small business owners will benefit greatly by becoming educated and aware of the implications of a social media focus…success might not be measured by direct sales only, but by an improved reputation and/or increased referrals.


Reason #4: Not Knowing How
Small business owners are likely talented experts in their own fields, but caterers, tailors, consultants, and printers etc. may have little or no knowledge of the impact or possibilities of social media as a viable business tool: and once they have become aware of it…may not know where to begin.


Solution: Get Help…You do not have to be a computer expert to implement an effective Social Media campaign, however, consulting with an experienced and knowledgeable Social Media Marketing (SMM) specialist can provide you with feasible ideas for simple but effective campaigns. There is no need to allow any of these reasons to prevent you from capitalizing on the opportunities that may be yours in the ever expanding world of Social Media.

 

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : SMM , social media , small business


How Should You Prioritize Your Social Media Marketing?

Posted Wed, January 22, 2014 by Julie Short

By now, most businesses agree that social media marketing is no longer optional – you have to maintain profiles on the major platforms if you want to compete in today's world.

But, deciding how to split up your time (or even money) between the different social media sites themselves is an entirely different matter. If you look hard enough, you can find a number of very good reasons to prefer any of them over the others:

  • Facebook still has the largest reach, in terms of daily visits and new content;
  • Google+ is affiliated with the world's most popular search engine, and is the fastest growing of the social networking sites;
  • LinkedIn is built for business, and can make networking with clients easier;
  • Twitter takes very little time, and can allow you to spread your marketing messages in a viral way;
  • Some studies show that Pinterest is the most reliable for e-commerce sites looking to generate click-throughs to online stores.

As you have probably guessed, we could go on with more bullets until you are thoroughly confused. But, if you're like most of us, you don't have the time, energy, or manpower to focus on all the social media sites at once. So, how do you decide where to place your priorities?

Here are a few tips to help you sort things out:

Remember that much depends on your industry and location. The answers that work for a small bakery aren't going to be the same that apply to a manufacturing company. Context is important, especially when it comes to social media marketing.

Pay attention to your customers. In a lot of cases, you can find out what social media sites are most important to you simply by going where your most important customers or clients go. Chances are, other buyers who fit the same profile will prefer the same social networking sites.

Study the analytics. As a rule of thumb, you want to pay the most attention to the social media sites that are showing you the biggest results. That means going back to your business website analytics and seeing which profiles are generating visits and conversions.

Don't be afraid to experiment. Regardless of what results you're seeing now, though, don't be afraid to experiment and see if you might be able to reach new markets (or at least engage customers in a different way) by trying social sites you haven't paid attention to in the past.

Are you getting the right kind of advice from your Internet marketing partner? What about bottom-line results? Now might be the perfect time to talk to WebRevelation and see what we can do to help your business grow.

 

Posted in : SEO/SMO/SMM | 
Tags : websites , social media


Turning Social Media Blunders Into Marketing Opportunities

Posted Wed, January 8, 2014 by Julie Short

In some ways, social media can be a wonderful tool for marketers and business owners everywhere. After all, if you have a healthy following on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, you have a virtually free, instant way to communicate ideas to your fans, customers, and colleagues all at once.

And then again, you also have a way to say the wrong thing to all of these groups at the same time… not to mention anyone they decide to pass it along to.

We already know you aren't the kind of person to post something you shouldn't on the Internet, and especially not in a space as public as a social media site. But, what happens when an intern or employee does it for you? Or when something you meant to be private ends up being seen by people it shouldn't be? What about when something you posted is taken in a completely unintentional way and offends an important customer?

You probably get the point. The more you use social media marketing, the more likely it is that you're going to run into one of these situations sooner or later. When you strip away things like body language and context, misunderstandings are almost certain to take place.

What matters isn't that you find a way to avoid every social media marketing mishap, but that you know how to respond to it. Here is how we teach our clients to turn social networking blunders into marketing and customer service opportunities:

Don't bury your head in the sand. When someone calls you out on social media, staying silent is essentially the same thing as saying that you just don't care. Even if that's actually true, remember that other customers, prospects, and contacts might be paying attention, and you certainly don't want to offend them at the same time. So, make a point of following up on messages and responding to issues and complaints that come your way.

Apologize if you need to. As most of us learn at one point or another, the important thing about an apology isn't that it's spoken or written, but that it appears to be genuine. If you're struggling to come up with a sentiment that will appease the other party, try to see things from their point of view. If it seems like you might have written a post on something that you shouldn't have, say you're sorry in a heartfelt way.

Get back on message. Acknowledging a problem, and apologizing, are one thing, but dwelling on the issue is another. Unless there’s some reason for you to come back to the same challenge, clear things up and then get back to other topics that matter to your readers and contact.

Don't give up. Some businesses, in the face of a social media "oops," decide to either stop posting altogether, or to turn their profiles into sources of very generic content. Neither is a very good choice if you want to keep attracting the attention of new customers and get them talking about your ideas. We learn the most from our mistakes, so don't be afraid to keep pushing forward and posting new material.

If you're looking for more great advice on web design, Internet marketing, and social media, come back to our blog soon. Or better yet, get in touch with a member of our team today and ask for a free consultation.

 

Posted in : Tips and Tricks | 
Tags : social media , marketing


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