If your marketing streak has been repressed like an uncomfortable childhood memory, now is the time to take stock and tackle the monster that is Social Media Marketing. We promise it can quickly become your new BFF (that is “Best Friends Forever”, not “Big Flipping Flop”)!
As a business owner or manager do you find you have “no time” to plan your brands’ or products’ exposure to the promising but fickle online communities? Nor do you have any marketing budget to speak of? Hmm.. We are sure that you would like to drive leads and sales and ensure your company’s survival in the long run though! Here is the good news: you CAN create successful social media marketing campaigns, even if you only have an hour to spare each week, promise. Put simply, in the ever-faster-changing and more competitive landscape, you cannot afford not to.
Let’s start with the basics: you do need compelling (or any, for that matter) pages and accounts for your company on:
- Minimum required: Facebook, Twitter and Google+
- Additional platforms to consider: LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest and any others that are relevant to your target audience and/or may have appeared since this article was published.
Do not know how to set your accounts up? Fear not, we are certain that somewhere within your organisation there is someone who is social media savvy. However, if there is not, fork out some ice-cream money and ask your child or grandchild for help. They will love you for it.
What Makes A Great Social Media Marketing Idea?
The key phrase here is SHARING. Wouldn’t you be compelled to check out, purchase from or just generally trust a company (product, service) that was recommended by one of your friends? The personal links, which social sharing create, are important to the success of your social media campaigns. How to get those shares is one of those eternal questions. There will be times where you do everything right and yet get no shares whatsoever but don’t be disheartened, be consistent in the quality of your posts and you will reap the rewards. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Be funny. People like to laugh, that is a fact. If people see something that they find funny they are far more likely to share it. Of course you must always consider your company’s corporate image but do not be too uptight. See Innocent Smoothies’ Facebook page for example. They do not take themselves too seriously and have become an example in how to do social media right.
- Pictures. They say that a picture is worth a thousand words and social media tends to agree. People love the instant effect of images, whether that is an irrelevant funny photo (remember brand exposure is good, even if it comes from someone sharing a funny cat photo that you posted) or a high quality photo of a new product. This ‘instant hit’ effect will often convert into shares if people like what they see.
- Keep it short. There will be times when a picture does not cut it however, for example when you want to explain how an offer works to your customers or share some news. When this is the case, make sure you keep it succinct and to the point. Facebook’s own guidelines state that the max length should be 250 words but generally speaking the shorter the better. The quicker your followers can digest what you are trying to say the quicker they will share it.
- Go viral. The holy grail of social media marketing campaigns. Going ‘viral’ is the term used to describe a post whose shares, likes and views grow exponentially and spread across the internet, much like a virus spreads through a population. By going viral you ensure your post, and therefore your brand, reaches many people all over the world. Check out Business Insider’s Top 10 Viral Adds of 2012 here. Although you may not have the budget that some of these companies command video is still the easiest way for you to go viral, but we will talk more about that later.
Do not forget that all this social media interaction can boost your website’s search engine rankings as well. Google indexes and ranks pages based on how relevant they feel they are to their customers, e.g. anyone searching in Google. The more positive interaction your brand gets, the more relevant Google will think it is and will promote it in search engine results pages (SERPs).
How To Use Video Marketing To Go Viral
This is the power which you can tap into very easily! We will not cover the mechanics of setting up accounts or business profiles – it is fairly simple, but you can always call in younger colleagues or family members to help out. What we will show you is how to create UNIQUE and COMPELLING (so that it has a chance of getting shared and – hopefully – going viral) content in less than 3 minutes. Do this a few times a week and you will open a whole new world of opportunities.
What You Will Need:
We abhor committing to any one technology or product, but this time you will need:
- an iPhone or iPad, as the tool we want to feature today is not yet available on Android devices,
- a Twitter account or email address (to register)
- a Facebook or Twitter account (to post your sparkling-new video on)
- some creativity and an Internet connection
- one of the modern, super user-friendly video capture tools (which we covered a while ago in our guide to using video in Social Media Marketing.)
Let’s get down to business – come on, do this with me NOW. We will be using Vine…
- Have an original, funny and creative idea (this is the hard part)
- Set it up ready to go and point your phone at whatever you want to film
- Hold your thumb on the screen to film, take it off to stop
- Once you’re happy with what you have share it with the world. It really is as easy as that.
Here is one we made earlier in a few minutes with a pen and a notepad:
Remember: Vine clips are by default set to mute, so be careful not to use sound/voiceover to convey important messages; focus on visuals to be on the safe side.
Social Media Consultancy
So there you have it, hopefully we have managed to convey to you just how valuable social media marketing can be for your business. Free advertising to an audience of over a BILLION people (with that number growing every day) cannot be ignored.
If you wanted to take advantage of the vast opportunities that social media marketing presents but felt that you did not have the knowledge or expertise, even after asking around the office/the young people in your family, then Binamic can help you. We provide a full social media optimisation package, from the setting up of your accounts to their continued running, so please call us on 01753 878435 or email us today to discuss your needs.
Written by Ryan Hill