Before you can start using social media to sell and market effectively, you need to take a close look at your business. Just as you would ahead of any new marketing or advertising campaign, you need to identify your unique selling points, pinpoint your business goals and establish the targets you want to achieve from your marketing efforts.
As you now know, marketing via social media is a very different beast to traditional selling so you need to keep that in mind at all times. It helps to remind yourself that people are at the core of everything you do; it’s not about nameless faceless clients. Neither is it about processes, materials or numbers on a spreadsheet.
Your company is all about people; you are made up of people, you are selling to other people (no matter if they are part of a business or not) and you do that by talking to people. That’s why you’ll also need to identify the ‘WIIMF’ conundrum; in short, you will have to answer the customer’s question: What’s In It For Me?
When a people buy youtube views and likes, the experience of the people at the platform is effective. The meeting of the requirements is great to have potential benefits. The answering to the question is through the experts available at the website. The promotion is done with excellence to have more results.
We’ll talk about that in just a few minutes.
In the meantime, if you’re serious about taking advantage of Social Media Today, you need to make sure that it’s a theme that runs throughout your goals and targets, so let’s take a look at your objectives…
It’s important for us all to have goals and a company or department is no different; as a salesman or manager, you need to set goals for yourself and your team to ensure your company and your selling efforts stay on track. If you don’t set goals for the company and the people within it, how can you know when you have achieved success?
Any good business sets its goals before writing a business and marketing plan; as the person responsible for sales, your goals need to fit in with those objectives and ensure the company reaches and meets its one year, two year, five year and beyond. If your company hasn’t yet set these targets, encourage them to do so; your whole social media plan of action will be dependent on them. There’s no point running off to use social media without being aware of what the company is trying to achieve long term; you could be sending out the wrong message, for instance. After all, while it is new, different and exciting, using social media has to slot into your other marketing efforts. Taking a pragmatic approach to social media will help you to identify your ROI; you won’t believe how many companies are currently using social media without any idea of what they hope to see in return.
Quick! Everyone else is using it, we should be too! They haven’t stopped to identify the desired ROI and have no clue what they want to achieve; as a result, they will never use social media to its full potential and will no doubt become one of the doubters complaining that you just can’t sell on social media. So, before you enter into social media, it’s worth taking the time to identify your ROI. It’s also worth spending some energy on making sure social media contributes to your overall company goals. Take each target or aim of the company and consider how you could use social media to help achieve it. How can social media be used to serve customers better, for instance? Could social media help the company to save money or build relation-ships or drive growth? Always make sure that your social goals match the targets of the company and you shouldn’t go too far wrong.
From this, you can develop your specific social media-related objectives.
Example objectives for a company’s use of social media could include:
- I want to know my customers better
- I want to increase brand awareness
- I want to improve customer support and service
- I want to drive traffic to my website
- I want to get more involved with people
- I want to keep up with my competitors
Whatever Smart Goals you choose, you should aim to have them quantifiable. Make sure your objectives are SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound. Pay particular attention to the section at the back of this book on how to track the impact of social media; to some degree the analytics and tools available to track social media will dictate what you can measure. That’s something that I just can’t stress enough. It’s important to take the time upfront to understand just how you will measure the success of your social media efforts; the value of social media to the company will depend on the definitions you set now. What will you look at?
What will tell you that your social media efforts have been successful – or not? Will it be new leads, concrete sales, consumer advocacy or something different? We’ll talk more about the tools available to help you do this at the back of the book. Needless to say, once you identify your measurements, you can set targets that relate to them. There’s no point in setting targets that you can’t measure; neither is there any point in identifying ways to track the success of social media without having any targets to aim for.
Whatever your values may be, commit to measuring them; establish which metrics you will use, how often and what baseline you will start from. Pilot projects to identify potential can be a good way to establish realistic goals. The next step is to create a list of all the things you want to achieve with social media and share it with the company. This could be a one pager or a formalized strategy document. Add a timeline for each target.
You now have the start of your social media strategy!