Sunday June 8, 2014 0 comments
Trying to figure out which social network to invest your time with? Maybe if you knew how Marketers use social media, you'd feel less lost and more efficient. Here's how Marketers use social media, according to a study done by Social Media Examiner (see the chart below).
Facebook still leads the way for B2C, with Twitter close behind. But surprisingly, Facebook beats out LinkedIn for B2B by one percentage point. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are the top three places I personally invest my own time the most. I was one of the 2,800 Marketers who participated in Social Media Examiner's 2014 study, so this data correlates with my own experience. Though you can find and follow me in GooglePlus; Follow Lori Gama on Pinterest; and Instagram, too.
But what about YOU? You might be a business owner who has to follow the do-it-yourself route for your marketing and need some help figuring out where to begin; how much time to invest on a daily basis and what type of content your community of fans, friends and followers gobble up and share with their own friends - which is digtial word-of-mouth marketing. If that's you (the DIY social media marketer) then start putting together the pieces of the puzzle in order to achieve the "big picture" results of revenue growth. Here's how:
- Decide who your ideal customers are. And figure out what the biggest problem is that YOU solve for them.
- Form your content (your posts and Tweets) around this solution. A simple way to figure this out is: your services are solutions to your customers' problems. So, share your tips, a check-list, a free e-book, blog posts around your expertise but be careful you don't come off sounding like a commercial. Consumers are tired of being hijacked that way. They are hungry for information so they can make informed decisions with where and whom to spend their money with. If you need help (website design, ecommerce website, SEO, Social Media Marketing), I have solutions: click here.
- Find out which device your customers use the most to connect with their favorite brands. Is it their smart phone? Is it their tablet or iPad? Or is it a laptop or desktop computer? Or is it a face-to-face event? Once you know this, many other pieces of the marketing puzzle can be put into place. For example: if you find out that your customers mostly connect to their favorite brands via their smart phones, then you MUST have a mobile-responsive website (you should have one anyway). If they'd much rather meet you in person or experience your brand in person (at an event, party, gathering) then give them that positive experience and before and after the event with content (tips, photos, links to resources)
You will find more statistics at Statista
Now let's look at how much time Marketers commit per week to social media marketing:34% of us invest 1-5 hours per week.
Social media marketing is one of my services, therefore, I fall into the 5% who invest 21-25 hours per week on my clients' social media marketing plus my own (sometimes more than 25 hours per week).
But for YOU - the business owner and/or marketing director who also invests time on other business-building tasks, you should be spending at least five hours per week on social media marketing (assuming you have a goal; plan; editorial calendar and other tools). One hour just isn't going to get the results you're after if you want to grow awareness of your brand and therefore, grow profitability.
HOW should you invest your time?
Simple: follow what most of these social media marketing professionals (including myself) plan to do more of. The following is listed in the order of what most of the study's participants plan to increase. Blogging is #1; Tweeting more is #2; YouTube is #3; increasing LinkedIn presence is #4; and Facebook dropped down to #5 - especially for B2B strategy.
#1: Increase your blogging: (assuming you have a blogging strategy) if you're blogging once a month, increase to twice. And build up to doing it weekly. Then you have more of your own content to promote in your Tweets and posts, rather than someone else's. Perhaps, this is why 68% of marketers plan to increase their blogging. It's an effective way to demonstrate your expertise. Again: you must have a strategy. Get professional help. Even just simply researching articles about "how to increase blog subscribers" will help you and be better than operating in the dark. No more guessing allowed in this world of smart data, literally at your fingertips.
#2: Increase your Tweeting: According to Social Media Examiner's 2014 study: "a majority of marketers (67%) will increase their activities on Twitter, up from 64% in 2013. Twitter moved from the number-five slot in 2013" to #3 in this year's study. I've always loved Twitter---that is, after I figured it out. Everyone has to have their "a-ha!" moment with it or you'll never understand its true joy and effectiveness in growing brand awareness. Twitter is just like life: it's whatever you make it be. I recommend you carefully craft your Twitter bio; profile canopy (the picture at top of profile); use the hashtags that your future, possible clients search with and use; strike up conversations with people you like and want to get to know; and just be yourself. People are watching you. They might not ever engage with you but they might end up hiring you or buying your products, so, like I always say: be yourself and you'll attract your tribe with your vibe. Get ready to see explosive usage of Twitter and TV; Twitter and movies released in theaters; Twitter and celebrities. Don't forget that Twitter is faster than an earthquake so be sure to use it as a way to monitor a breaking news story. Chances are that YOU will know about the "news" before your non-Tweeting friends do because the eye witnesses often Tweet before they call or are able to call 911 for help.
#3: Increase your video marketing, specifically: via YouTube. With 67% of marketers planning to increase their YouTube presence, according to the Social Media Examiner study, you, too, should formulate your strategy for YouTube. It's the second most popular search engine, behind Google. And did you know you can optimize your videos in YouTube so they're more easily found by keywords? Don't upload them with filenames. Choose their titles as wisely as you choose your blog post headlines.
#4: Increase your LinkedIn usage: 64% of marketers plan on spending more time in LinkedIn. This also makes sense to me because LinkedIn is a B2B network and because its members continue to grow. LinkedIn has done a good job of keeping itself useful for the business professional and has remained true to its mission: connect the world's professionals to make them more productive and successful. When you join LinkedIn, you get access to people, jobs, news, updates, and insights that help you be great at what you do. My recommendation is that if you own a business, you have to be in LinkedIn - with an optimized profile and a good plan that will gain more business for you. Unless you have time to self-educate about LinkedIn, hire a professional to help you at least get properly set-up.
#5: Facebook: SME's study reported: "Our research shows the beginning of a decline in the use of Facebook among marketers..." -moving from the #3 spot in 2013 down to the #5 spot in 2014, as far as marketers are concerned, with only 54% planning increasing usage for their B2C strategy. But Social media newcomers (73%) plan on increasing their use of Facebook. I think that if you're already having success with Facebook (high engagement and a consistent increase of Likes/Fans) then stick to it. But if you haven't yet dipped your toes in the water of Facebook, think carefully about the committment you'll have to make in order to increase business growth. If you're a locally-based business: definitely consider Facebook, as long as you have a well-thought-out plan. Or hire a professional social media marketer who has gained results for other clients to do it for you.
That should give you enough to digest for now. Where will YOU invest more of your time in social media marketing?
Please share this blog post with your LinkedIn network and Tweet it and share it in Facebook and Pinterest. I appreciate your sharing! Call me if you need help.