Tap Into The Crowd
Social media marketing (SMM) is potentially a big opportunity for many companies to market themselves effectively and build their brand online. This sector has seen rapid growth in recent years and although it’s tempting to simply ‘jump on the bandwagon’, social media marketing requires careful planning and implementation to be an effective use of resources.
With Facebook now attracting more online visits than Google, this is one example of social media marketing that can’t be ignored, but there are other sites too, such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, Stumbleupon – and many more – that can give an online business new ways to reach their target audience. However, social media is quite different from search marketing, for instance, and therefore the strategies and techniques involved need to be very different to get the best results.
Web Marketing Workshop has been involved with social media marketing campaigns for clients from the early days. We are also constantly monitoring the new opportunities, websites and services that are evolving so that we can develop new strategies for online businesses in this sector.
Making social media marketing work for your business
Social media marketing activities can be a notorious drain on time, without generating immediate results, or with the return on investment being difficult to track. SMM therefore requires a different approach to search engine marketing campaigns – a clear strategy needs to be developed, with an understanding of each social media site, the target audience, and the long-term results that are required.
Social media and networking sites tend to involve user interaction and content generation, from the early days of discussion forums and bookmarking sites, to newer social interaction and location-targeted services. They can therefore provide companies with a platform, as well as a feedback device and a way to interact with their customer base. As social media sites become more integrated with search, they are also a prominent form of online activity.
What strategies to follow
There are 4 core areas of online social media that provide opportunities for business websites:
Blog marketing: blogs have now been around for more than 15 years and remain a prominent method of communication, as well as interaction with interested readers. The use of blogs can have many advantages as part of an online marketing campaign and can also be a valuable tool as part of an SEO strategy.
Facebook marketing: with almost 2bn users worldwide, Facebook has been the social media success of recent years and offers companies a powerful marketplace, as long as it’s used correctly. Most businesses need to consider paid advertising on Facebook to achieve a good level of visibility to a target market.
Twitter marketing: this micro-blogging site has also seen a massive increase in usage over recent years and it can be used as a real-time communication and marketing tool.
LinkedIn marketing: LinkedIn is the leading social network for business and gives companies and individuals a method of networking and marketing their products and services.
There are, of course, many other mainstream and niche social media sites that can be used for different purposes, and there will no doubt be new services launching as this sector continues to develop.