Jul 182017
 
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7 Basic Elements Of Building Your Social Media Marketing Plan

You need a social media marketing plan for your small business!

This is a guest post from Dorien Morin at More In Media.

Social media marketing without a plan is like any kind of marketing without a plan – it’s not as effective. You might go through all the trouble of renting a storefront, ordering inventory, hiring staff and opening the doors for customers to come see you… and then… nothing! The only difference is that with social media, it’s done online.

If you want social media marketing to work for your business, you need to have a plan of action in order to measure growth, success, and ROI.

Here are 7 basic elements of building your own social media marketing plan today!

Goals

What are your goals of being on social media?

Drive foot traffic to a brick and mortar store?

Increases Online sales?

Website Traffic?

Brand Awareness?

Email Signups?

More Sales Overall?

Expand territory?

Grow online community?

Grow Team?

You can certainly add your own goals to this list.

Then, identify your main goal as well as 2-3 secondary goals you want to accomplish.

The first step of your social media marketing plan is done!

Target Audience 

Identify your “customer avatar,” a/k/a your ideal client.

To do that, ask yourself the following questions:

Who is my most profitable customer?

Who is my most loyal customer?

What age is my ideal customer?

Where do most of my customers live?

What is the disposable income of my target audience?

How often does my target audience purchase a service/product like mine?

Does my target audience buy online or offline (what are their buying habits?)

What social media sites does my target audience frequent?

Etc.

Answering these questions will help you create ‘the ideal customer’, your avatar. Now all your marketing efforts should be focused on engaging that avatar! That includes writing ads and creating videos that will make an impact on that specific avatar.

Second step is done!

Budget

Having a marketing budget is essential to building your social media marketing plan as you will need to budget for staff wages, consulting fees, content creation (photography, video and copywriting), advertising, automation tools and more.

Without a budget, your hands are tied – you can try to build your brand and online community for ‘free’ but it will still take a huge resource – your time!

Once you’ve completed your budget, the third step is done!

(Social) Media Audit

Without knowing where you are as you start, you can’t measure growth and success as you move forward.

You will need a (social) media audit to find out where you are currently visible online (platforms) as well as offline, what marketing efforts are working and what is not, what your website traffic is doing (Google Analytics), how your Facebook Ads are doing (if you are running any) and the status of your email marketing as well as your offline marketing efforts.

Throw this data into a Google doc and you’ve got your audit done. Use this data to measure growth in all areas; weekly, monthly, yearly.

Step four, done.

Competitors

Your competition is one of the best resources available to you if you are ready to create a written social media marketing plan.

Why reinvent the wheel? I suggest picking 3-5 industry and/or local competitors and make a spreadsheet with the following data.

Check their Website – are they using video? Is there a blog? E-commerce? A Podcast?

Check Facebook – what type of posts do well? How much engagement do they have? How often do they post? Do they go LIVE?

Check Twitter – are they active? What do they tweet? How many followers do they have?

Check Instagram – do they have an account? How often do they post? Do they mainly post pictures or video? What hashtags are being used?

Check all other platforms, including review sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor etc if relevant.

Use this data not to copy what your competitors are doing, but as a starting point for best practices. If their audience engages well with video, why not create an awesome video series? If there’s nothing much going on with Twitter in their/your industry, maybe put that on the back burner, unless you think there’s an opportunity to engage relevant constituencies there. It’s hard to know without trying – test it, then adjust accordingly.

Step five is complete.

Tools

You will need automation and creator tools for social media. This includes subscriptions to software, email marketing or CRM systems, as well as access to (stock) photo sites. Do some research and find out how much to add to your budget for tools – you will need to tools to be efficient!  A few of the tools you’ll want to consider include:

Canva – graphics creation

Buffer – scheduling

Camtasia – screen capture

mailChimp – email marketing

infusionsoft – CRM

Asana – project management

Slack – team projects

That’s step six, but in reality, your research on tools will be ongoing.

Content

Content creation isn’t free! You might need to hire a videographer for the day, or a video editor. You might need a photographer for an event or for website pictures. You will most likely need a copywriter and a webmaster to keep your website up-to-date and yes, that falls under social media, too. Creating a social media marketing plan includes the need for a monthly content calendar with content ideas to be worked out by the marketing team. Understand that creating content isn’t the end –there needs to be a budget to promote this content as well, as such promotion is essential to social media marketing success!

And that’s step seven!

These are seven building blocks of creating your very own social media marketing plan.

I suggest you create this plan in a written format that it can easily be shared with your team!

Refer back to this plan as you execute it, at least on a monthly basis to make sure you are still on the right track and create a new, updated plan every year!

 

Dorien Morin

Dorien@moreinmedia.com

www.moreinmedia.com

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May 292017
 
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5 Reasons You Should Not Ignore Video For Marketing

If last year was the year of the video for marketing, this year is the year of live video.

When you use social media for personal use, you cannot ignore the countless videos streamed to your newsfeed, whether it be on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Snapchat. As business owner, CEO or marketing director, you also should not ignore the reality of using video in your marketing, as using traditional marketing techniques will only reach certain demographics, not necessarily the people you need to reach. Video allows you to reach many more people, more quickly and with more impact than with images or written content alone.

However, we have found that there are several barriers to getting started with video marketing. The biggest barrier typically is fear! Fear of the unknown can stop even the most determined person in their tracks.

If you are fearful of:

  • Expense
  • Lack of technical knowledge
  • Video marketing expertise
  • Social Media expertise

connect with an industry expert, so you can get beyond these fears and harness the power of video in your marketing. Talk to your local social media consultant, videographer and/or marketing agency. They can help you get past these barriers, quickly.

Before you decide to use video marketing, let’s talk benefits. Here are 5 reasons your business should not ignore video:

Video provides an opportunity to tell your (brand) story visually

More than pictures alone, more than audio by itself, video allows you to appeal to several senses all at once. Visual storytelling is captivating and if you capture the essence of your brand with video in such a way to move people to action, video allows you to create very loyal brand ambassadors.

Video allows a behind-the-scenes look at your brand

Grab your Smartphone. How mobile is it? Can you think of a time at work your Smartphone isn’t within reach? Most people have access to a video camera through their Smartphone and thus can take on the role of brand newscaster with the simple click of a recording button. This allows you to capture and use more candid video (the kind that captures and generates emotion) to use in your marketing.

Video can show your support of local charities and events in real time

Do pictures of other people having fun at a charity event make you feel like you are missing out? Most of the time, seeing pictures doesn’t quite do that, right? However, if instead of a few pictures there was a fun video with live music, dancing, a race, an auction or something else exciting, you might have that feeling of ‘I need to be part of this community’. That’s what video can do! Use video to relay the excitement and capture the atmosphere.

Video builds trust with your online community

If you use it, people will watch you. If you use it, then love it and share it, someone else will want to try it! Monkey see, monkey do! That’s how you build trust. Real people using real products and services, having a good time doing it, and then raving about it!

Video boosts sales and conversions

A simple explanation goes a long way! If you explain and show the benefits of your products or services in a video, typically you can convert more easily than just by providing a written description of those benefits.

Simply said: if you want to grow sales and build your brand and your online community, start using video to connect, grow and convert!

 

Guest post by:

Dorien Morin

dorien@moreinmedia.com

www.moreinmedia.com

 

 

 

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Apr 292014
 
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Seven Things All Small Businesses Should Be Doing On Social Media

Many small business owners are now active on social media. Whether you outsource your marketing, have an in-house staff or you are a solo entrepreneur doing it all yourself, making sure to get the most out of your social media marketing is important!

Talk to a web designer and s/he will tell you web design is of utmost importance. Talk with a graphic artist and branding becomes your #1 priority. Talk with a social media manager and engagement, blogging and audience building should be at the top of your list. Are you confused yet?

There are many things you should do online if you ask the ‘experts’. Whatever you decide to do online and whatever time you have or budget to pay for it, make sure it is done professionally, with consistency and frequency.

Going back to basics though, especially for those just starting out, here is my BEST ADVICE for small business owners.

  1. Own your own online real estate. Get a website! There is nothing, I repeat, nothing – no other platform – better than your own site. Get a .com and get a website. You can do and say whatever you want on that site and you own it. Traffic to your site will be for you to do with as you want and building that online presence cannot be done anywhere else.
  2. Choose your social media platforms wisely. Once you commit to a certain platform, be present and post relevant information. Information should be relevant to your current audience, that specific platform and potential customers alike.
  3. Engage with your audience and stop broadcasting. Ask questions, provide industry information, quote experts, post behind the scenes looks, updates and pictures of office, staff and events.
  4. Have consistent branding and know who you are first! Use your ‘elevator pitch’ to find your key marketing points and make sure those come across quickly in your branding. This includes written content as well as images and graphics.
  5. Fill out those profiles with as much information and keywords as possible. Social media profiles get indexed by search engines. What will they find when they index yours?
  6. Have a blog, create content consistently and frequently and learn where and how to distribute it. One great way to create blog content is to turn every single question asked of you about your business into a blog post where you answer that question.
  7. Know what you are doing online, why you are doing it and where you want to be! Track your efforts, track your leads and analyze what you are doing to improve your stats.

+ 2 BONUS:

  • Doing all of the above without a strategic plan will set you up to fail. Start with a strategic social media plan which includes short and long-term goals.
  • Include social media in your marketing budget. This money could be used for advertising (PPC, Facebook ads, Twitter ads, SEO services etc.), graphic design, running contests, social media tools, website management, social media management, consulting services and more!

The value of social media is directly related to the effort you put into it. I can’t say it enough, but I will do so again: being present where you have a presence is super important. It’s how you build your reputation and brand. Would you invite guests to come over to your home, leave the lights on for them, but forget to be there yourself?

Dorien Morin-van Dam
Social Media Consultant & Strategist at More In Media
Connect with me on Social Media
Twitter
G+
Facebook

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Aug 242010
 
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The is a guest post by Phyllis Zimbler Miller.

Businesses large and small, online, offline, national, and local need to take social media seriously or be left behind by their competitors who do take seriously this form of promotion/marketing/connecting with potential customers/clientele.

It’s human nature to prefer to interact with real people rather than with faceless businesses. How many times have you had a customer service problem and asked whom you can talk to that can help you with the problem? If the business has a known contact person, don’t you instead ask to speak to that person?

Yet social media marketing goes far beyond providing the name of someone whom people can ask for help with a product or service.

Effective utilizing social media enables a business to forge relationships with targeted audiences, create raving fans of those people with whom relationships are formed, and have those raving fans spread the word about the business.

Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook pages (business pages rather than personal pages — profiles) offer businesses a way to connect with target markets where these target markets hang out. At these online “water cooler” sites, businesses can then provide valuable information and special offers plus have the ability to keep tabs on how well the information and offers are received.

Local businesses can use Twitter to tweet a promotional offer or to announce a new product or service. These same local businesses can use Facebook pages to provide a community for their fans and to capture the email addresses of these fans in order to stay in touch with them by email as well as through Twitter and the updates on the business’ Facebook page.

Encouraging people to “like” a company’s offerings/blog on its website and/or its Facebook page provides social proof of the worth of the company. After all, how much more likely are we to attend a film that our friends rave about than a film that movie critics rave about? That’s the power of “social proof.”

In addition, mobile marketing builds on social media marketing. Using mobile marketing, for example, businesses can send special offers by text message to their fans who have opted in to such notifications.

Let’s imagine the websites of two restaurants:

Restaurant A has an old-fashioned static website that gives address and telephone number, directions, hours, and a sample menu. There are no links or icons for Twitter or a Facebook page; no blog; no way to interact at all except to email info@restaurant.com

Restaurant B has an up-to-date website/blog that also provides email optin for special discount offers, a Facebook “like” button or “recommend” button, perhaps a Facebook “comments” widget so fans can leave comments on the website itself, a Facebook page widget so fans can “like” the restaurant’s Facebook page without leaving the site, a Twitter link, and numerous other opportunities for fans to interact with restaurant personnel on the restaurant’s website.

Which local restaurant is more likely to have a loyal fan base? Obviously restaurant B.

Bottom line as to why you need to take social media seriously for your business?

Because your competitors are taking social media seriously and you don’t want to lose your business to your competitors’ social media efforts.

Learn about how combining social media with a social media-enhanced website can help attract more business by getting the free report “Twitter, Facebook and Your Website: A Beginning Blueprint for Harnessing the Power of 3 for Your Business” at www.millermosaicpowerof3.com

(c) 2010 Miller Mosaic, LLC

Phyllis Zimbler Miller (@ZimblerMiller on Twitter) has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School and is the co-founder of the social media marketing company Miller Mosaic Power Marketing, which coaches clients on how to effectively use social media to attract more business..

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