Since social media marketing first came to be, strategists and markets have been getting smarter and more careful with the way they go about collecting information and distributing advertisements. With the presence of data collecting companies, there is no longer a need to target specific audiences. This can be seen as a large ethical gray area. For many users, this is a breach of privacy, but there are no laws that prevent these companies from using the information provided on their websites. Companies like Equifax, Inc., TransUnion Corp, and LexisNexis Group thrive on collecting and sharing personal information of social media users. In 2012, Facebook purchased information from 70 million households from a third party company called Datalogix. Facebook later revealed that they purchased the information in order to create a more efficient advertising service.
Last but not least, the reason that is most likely to lead to ROI: increased inbound traffic. Without social media, your leads are limited to people who are familiar with your brand and people who find you by searching ranked keywords. By increasing your social media content frequency and expanding your social media channel presence, you are adding another path back to your site. And as a result, you’ll receive higher traffic, as well as more conversions.
Social media platforms like Yelp and FourSquare are great for brick and mortar businesses looking to implement marketing on social media. Register on these sites to claim your location spot, and then consider extra incentives such as check-in rewards or special discounts. Remember, these visitors will have their phones in hand, so they will be able to write and post reviews. A lot of good reviews can significantly help sway prospective visitors to come in and build your business!
Another highlight from the Ford example above feeds right back into the positivity that thrives on Google+. People on nearly every social platform enjoy reading positive stories about corporate responsibility and positive change. What cause could your company join and make a difference through? How can you use your product to change lives? Those are the things that resonate with Google+ users.
The platform of social media is another channel or site that business' and brands must seek to influence the content of. In contrast with pre-Internet marketing, such as TV ads and newspaper ads, in which the marketer controlled all aspects of the ad, with social media, users are free to post comments right below an online ad or an online post by a company about its product. Companies are increasing using their social media strategy as part of their traditional marketing effort using magazines, newspapers, radio advertisements, television advertisements. Since in the 2010s, media consumers are often using multiple platforms at the same time (e.g., surfing the Internet on a tablet while watching a streaming TV show), marketing content needs to be consistent across all platforms, whether traditional or new media. Heath (2006) wrote about the extent of attention businesses should give to their social media sites. It is about finding a balance between frequently posting but not over posting. There is a lot more attention to be paid towards social media sites because people need updates to gain brand recognition. Therefore, a lot more content is need and this can often be unplanned content.
Use the data you gather via social listening to analyze how your customers and prospects feel and what they need from your business. Your goal should be to make sure you have confidence in the data you are looking at, so you’ll need a comprehensive and extendable social analytics effort to ensure you can keep up with the latest demands. Once you understand the data, you have the opportunity to share the findings broadly across the business. We call this “operationalizing the data.”
Sproutsocial is a powerful management and engagement platform for social business. Sprout Social offers a single stream inbox designed to help you never miss a message, and tools to seamlessly post, colloborate and schedule messages to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. The platform also has monitoring tools and rich analytics to help you visualize important metrics.
Aim to produce and share content that educates, informs, entertains, or inspires. Try to mix things up a little with a balance of the four types of content and keep overtly promotional posts to a minimum. Outdoor outfitter REI has a Force of Nature campaign that highlights women in the outdoors. The content relates to REI’s mission and aims to inspire, not directly sell.
If you want to know what’s happening with your brand’s social networking sites you need social media monitoring tools. Before you reach for your wallet and start to spend money try out some of the free social media monitoring services. This way you will get an understanding of what is available and if you need any paid services to monitor social media.
Now that you know the answer to the pressing question, what is social media management, it’s time to talk about why social media management is important for your small business. The first and perhaps most obvious reason is that your customers are active on social media. They want to see content from brands like yours, and they are often open to the messages you present on social channels more than they are advertising messages.
First, you need to understand what a strategy is, and isn’t it. A strategy should define the main aim of your social media presence and set the parameters for what it will deliver and how it will be delivered. It will be supported by a tactical plan that defines how the strategy will be delivered, including the channels, resource and budgets to achieve it.
It's worth noting that many of the non-enterprise products use Facebook Analytics to some degree to gather their Facebook data. Facebook Analytics requires that a Facebook page have at least 30 likes before it begins to pay attention to it and gather stats. Google Analytics is also a valuable free tool and generates numerous types of reports and tools. Reports can be segmented and filtered to suit business needs. Real-time views reveal which new content is popular, how much traffic today's new promotion is driving to your website, and which tweets and blog posts draw the most engagement. Being able to pull from this application greatly benefits other social tool apps. Of the SMB-focused offerings, Sprout Social Premium, Buffer for Business, and Hootsuite Pro can integrate Google Analytics.
Find out how many people are pinning from your website, seeing your pins, and clicking your content. Pick a time-frame to see how your numbers trend over time. Get better at creating Pins and boards with metrics from your Pinterest profile. Learn how people use the Pin It button on your site to add Pins. See how people interact with your Pins from whatever device they use. Get a glance at your all-time highest-performing Pins.
Gremlin Social combines social media marketing automation with 3 compliance tools that make it easy for banks, mortgage companies, and financial advisors to master the social media marketing landscape and gain new business using social networks. Endorsed by the American Bankers Association for social media management and compliance, Gremlin Social helps ensure the safe & effective use of social media communication while maximizing marketing campaigns, guiding strategies such as content creation & social media policy review assistance, and monitoring returns through analytics.
Socedo is an automated social media lead generation tool that works with Twitter and LinkedIn to help you find the right leads from social media and then add them to your sales funnel. So if you came to this page looking for a tool to plan and publish content, Socedo isn’t your best option. But if you came here looking for a way to convert more of your social audience into business leads, then check out their data-driven approach to social media management.
Those who rely on Twitter to get their message across will find much to like about Followerwonk. This tool comes with a variety on analytics tool which will help you determine everything there is to know about your audience, including their location and the hours during which they are at their most active. This will enable you to target your posts and increase their impact, because they will be read by more people. You can also do the clever thing and integrate it with Buffer, and set it to post schedule posts automatically at the time your readers are on Twitter.
One more tool I came across with this year is viralpep. Some extraordinary features that outstands other social media management tools are – 50 Social Profile which you can maintain easily on a single platform, Unlimited Posting on social profiles, Scheduling Posts so you can manage your profiles more reliably, Manage a Team of 20 can help in conveying your messages, making the postings fast and easy, 24/7 Support of team for the client, Profile & Post Timezone while you are scheduling it becomes easy to set time, GIF Support, Like and Share, URL Shortener, Video Share, Link Preview is available, hashtag is supported & is Mobile Friendly.
Beyond its ability to schedule posts for all of your social media channels, Buffer boasts an in-platform image creator, video and gif uploader, analytics reports exporting, and a handy browser extension to make access to all of the above simple and quick. It supports all major social media platforms (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest).
Social media marketing involves the use of social networks, consumer's online brand-related activities (COBRA) and electronic word of mouth (eWOM) to successfully advertise online. Social networks such as Facebook and Twitter provide advertisers with information about the likes and dislikes of their consumers. This technique is crucial, as it provides the businesses with a "target audience". With social networks, information relevant to the user's likes is available to businesses; who then advertise accordingly. Activities such as uploading a picture of your "new Converse sneakers to Facebook" is an example of a COBRA. Electronic recommendations and appraisals are a convenient manner to have a product promoted via "consumer-to-consumer interactions. An example of eWOM would be an online hotel review; the hotel company can have two possible outcomes based on their service. A good service would result in a positive review which gets the hotel free advertising via social media. However, a poor service will result in a negative consumer review which can potentially harm the company's reputation.
When I went rock climbing for the first time, I had no idea what I was doing. My friends and I were complete newbies about ropes and rappelling and every other bit of jargon and technique that goes with climbing. We saw others doing it spectacularly well. We were thrilled at the thought of reaching the top of the climbing wall; we had no idea how to get there.
Moving up from being just another marketing channel, social media has become a primary conduit for any kind of business to connect with customers and partners. Touchpoints can vary widely. It could be matching social perception trends to specific records or audience groupings in your customer relationship management (CRM) repository; or, you could record a customer's @mention in your helpdesk system when she complains about your product over Twitter. What makes social media so attractive and valuable is that it's a real-time conduit for measuring your audience's pulse and pushing out content that aligns with your brand. To be an effective social media manager or marketer across all these fronts requires a robust social media management and analytics platform.
This is all somewhat depressing, but as my mom recently explained Facebook has given her the power to reconnect with friends and even family members that she hasn’t spoken to in over twenty years. We’ve all heard stories of long-lost siblings, lovers, and guardians finding each other via social platforms. Not to mention the powerful charitable movements like the Ice Bucket Challenge, which helped raise over $100 million for ALS, a 3,500% increase from the $2.8 million raised during the same time period the year prior, according to Forbes.
We are humans, so mistakes are unavoidable. This is especially true when it comes to the fast-paced world of social media. Rather than flat out ignoring these hiccups, embrace them. I am not saying that when a comma is missed in a tweet you should announce this small grammar error, but DO NOT delete the tweet. It has already been published, and followers are more likely to notice if you are continuously re-posting. For larger mistakes, like a product error or multiple overcharges to customer credit cards, you’ll want to proactively respond in an apologetic, actionable manner, and send out content from your social accounts apologizing and addressing how the error is being handled so customers are aware.
Buzzmonitor is an innovating solution which involves consultancy, diagnosis, and technology to help users manage their business on Social Media. Buzzmonitor offers features such as real-time dashboards, access to up to 9 Brands, access up to 9 Users, access up to 15.000 items per month and an Account Manager (which is not available in the freemium package). Buzzmonitor monitors users’ brand on social media, creates custom reports and turns them into real-time dashboards with one click. Users also gets to compare their Facebook, Twitter and Youtube channels’ metrics with the ones from their competition. BuzzMonitor also lets users respond and…
I’m a fan of Buffer. It lets you schedule and manage social media posts across all of the most widely used channels, and you can individually customize each post for all of the different platforms it gets posted to. Buffer also shares your content at the best possible times throughout the day and tracks links so that you can see what content gets the most traction. - Chi Zhao, Hokku PR
Unplanned content is an 'in the moment' idea, "a spontaneous, tactical reaction." (Cramer, 2014, p. 6). The content could be trending and not have the time to take the planned content route. The unplanned content is posted sporadically and is not calendar/date/time arranged (Deshpande, 2014). Issues with unplanned content revolve around legal issues and whether the message being sent out represents the business/brand accordingly. If a company sends out a Tweet or Facebook message too hurriedly, the company may unintentionally use insensitive language or messaging that could alienate some consumers. For example, celebrity chef Paula Deen was criticized after she made a social media post commenting about HIV-AIDS and South Africa; her message was deemed to be offensive by many observers. The main difference between planned and unplanned is the time to approve the content. Unplanned content must still be approved by marketing managers, but in a much more rapid manner e.g. 1–2 hours or less. Sectors may miss errors because of being hurried. When using unplanned content Brito (2013) says, "be prepared to be reactive and respond to issues when they arise." Brito (2013) writes about having a, "crisis escalation plan", because, "It will happen". The plan involves breaking down the issue into topics and classifying the issue into groups. Colour coding the potential risk "identify and flag potential risks" also helps to organise an issue. The problem can then be handled by the correct team and dissolved more effectively rather than any person at hand trying to solve the situation.
For businesses with a large cadre of social presences, multiple social marketing campaigns running simultaneously, and a growing global footprint, the less expensive tools may not cut it. If you're willing to pay for them, then tools such as Brandwatch Analytics, Crimson Hexagon, Talkwalker, Synthesio, Sysomos, and Brand24, arm enterprise organizations with a sleeker, more powerful class of social analytics tools.
Excellent List… I would like to add an info about the new analytical tool in the market, Social clout.com, which includes monitoring, listening, engagement workflow, social media analytics and social media lead generation. If possible, I would ask you and the users in need of the social media analytical tool to try out the te tool on www.socialclout.com , and give yor precious feedback. This tool would be great asset to the marketing teams of small business because of its features and competitive pricing.
As individuals, we have a higher tendency to follow accounts of “real people” vs. businesses even if we don’t personally know the person. I have tried my hardest to show on social media that WordStream is a real place with a real person with a real personality behind it! To get some ideas, Gizmodo and Contently have companies that manage their social accounts with flair and sass and everything people love…about real people. My personal favorites are Chipotle, Seamless, and Nutella. This says nothing about my real-life favorite things, I swear.
Optimize your profiles: Fill out your social profiles with all the information your customers might want and try to claim the same username on every platform, especially a unique tracking link to your website. Have a clear bio that describes what you do and what you’re about (this is essentially your digital elevator pitch). Also be sure to have an avatar and cover photo wherever applicable. You can use Canva to create these in the right dimensions for each channel you’ve chosen.
First and foremost, you should always encourage conversations and keep communication lines open. Make engaging with your brand as easy and compelling as possible. To do this, contribute to your community consistently. Valuable communities can require huge amounts of time and effort to develop, so before you get started be willing to commit to the work.
Just ‘doing social’ is no longer good enough. Doing it in a half-hearted or un-planned fashion could well do more damage to your brand than not doing it at all. In order to make the most of it you need to plan, manage and optimise it. This all takes time, but there is an excellent set of free social media management tools out there to save you time and get better results from social media marketing.
You may have already heard, but chatbots are in. This comes as no surprise as they are the one digital tool that can communicate and resolve problems for your customers without the potential need for any human interruption. In addition to the above, chatbots integrate with the platforms that consumers now feel most comfortable interacting through: social media. Platforms such as Chattypeople make integrating an AI-powered chatbot into your social media strategy easy. These tools allow you to create a chatbot that:
This platform is among the best developed of the free social media tools out there. It gives you a dashboard to allow you to overview the activity on your tweets, Facebook posts and whatever other social channels you have connected. It also allows you to schedule posts to all the social channels you have connected, so you can reach your audience exactly when the largest number of them are online.
If you’re looking for a platform to create your social media content calendar, there are a plethora of great options available. Both Buffer and Hootsuite are free to sign up, and allow you to schedule social media posts in advance, based on the platform of your choice. This means that you won’t have to worry about posting anything manually at a specific time.
SocialOomph really helps you get the best out of your social media marketing. With minimal effort, you can get maximal results. You can choose to use the free version of this software which has certain limitations. Note: if you decide to sign up for a 7-day trial of their premium service and you like it, you will get features you can’t access as a free user.
Taking care of your social media presence is just as important as providing brilliant content for your audience. Not only do you inform them about things they might find useful, but you can also interact with them and receive valuable feedback and ideas for topics, connect with other people in your field and establish collaboration, and reach out to influencers, among other things.