Social Media Marketing Advice - How to go about SMM today

When rifling through your marketing toolkit there is one gizmo in particular that can be a huge benefit for any business in today's world. Yes, everyone's favourite -  social media.

But, before using it, it's important to know how to use this little tool. So let me explain how to do it right and try and help you understand how it has changed over the years. 

Social media marketing, how to describe it? Well, let's imagine you are at a networking event. You meet many people there, all chatting away. Then someone comes up to you and starts hitting you with a hard sell of their product. You have never even met this person so you are not totally sold on buying what s/he is offering, no matter how good s/he says it is. You are probably not going to buy from this person.

Another person you meet is very friendly asking questions on more than just your work. They also offer you advice on areas you may not be so familiar with. Over time you see this person at the networking events and build a friendship with them. It turns out this person sells car insurance, and guess what, yours is up for renewal. Many companies are telling you they have the best deal but you decide to speak to your friend about what he could offer. Turns out he also offers a great deal and like most, you trust your friend and buy the product from him.

The two examples above demonstrate how you can be on social media with your business pages.

Do you always post your products telling people how good they are and hope they buy them and take your word for it? Or do you offer value to your followers, build trust and then introduce your products to them after building a relationship.

The first might be how things used to work, but these days the second approach makes much more sense. So define your audience and figure out what content provides value for them, and don’t be scared to try different things out. You can then analyse what worked with your audience and then repeat these.

Understand there are different leads out there.

crowd of people

Hot, warm and cold. These are the 3 categories of leads out there on social media so let's break them down.

Hot leads have either bought from you before or have shown extreme interest in your product or services.

Warm leads might be someone who has shown interest in a service or follows and interacts with your business page.

Cold leads are people who don't know about you and it could be the first time they are coming into contact with your business.

Now you can target these leads differently on social media and move people through the different stages.

For hot leads, you may want to upsell an additional product to them that would compliment the product they already have.

A warm lead may have shown interest in a few articles you publish on tips around a specific area, so now you could think about selling them the product they have shown interest in with a post about it.

A cold lead would not take kindly to a hard sell straight away, instead offer them something valuable like hints and tips.

From this you can see that this social media strategy could be a long-term strategy, starting with a cold lead and moving them through to a sale, but by working this way it really will pay off in the end, and remember, not all leads will be cold on your social media so you will have some quicker conversions depending where they are up to on the journey from cold to hot.

Here is the clever part

The clever part comes from guiding your potential customers from cold to hot leads and I am going to tell you how this can be done.

Facebook has a great tool which is Facebook Pixel. This is where you put a snippet of code on your website that tracks people when they land on your site. You can get specific with this and create your own Facebook audiences depending on specific actions they take. For example, if you sold fruit and veg, you could do a blog post (with your pixel code on it) around how good fruit and veg is for your health. You can then create a Facebook audience of anyone who lands on this page and call them “fruit and veg blog audience”. Anyone Landing on this page is now a warm lead as they have shown interest in your post. You now have a list of all people who have an interest in the benefits of fruit and veg, so for your next advert you could promote your webpage selling fruit and veg and send this advert to your “fruit and veg blog audience”. This advert will then have much more of a meaning to them

1. Because you know they are interested in this.

2. They recognise your brand as they have read your blog before.

In conclusion

I think people need to look at social media as what it is. It is a social space, not a place to put products in peoples faces that they don't want to see. The example of the networking event is great with it showing how you would work in real life, so it should be the same on social media. Focus on giving value to your followers, build trust and then you can make a sale. Also, have a strategy and a reason behind each post, whether it is to provide value or to make the sale to the now hot and warm leads that you have taken through the journey with your adverts.