By: Michael Sim
The following list describes the basic steps a company should make before initiating social media as part of it’s internal marketing efforts. Planning, policy forming, and team formation all play a crucial role to integrate and maintain a successful social media campaign.
1) Marketing Strategy
Develop a sound marketing strategy, and identify which sites will encompass your social networking toolset.
2) Define Toolset
Identify the 3rd party applications and other utilities that will be used by the social networking team member(s).
3) Create Policy
Implement a policy for members of the company who will be using social networking for business purposes.
4) Create Social Team
Designate social networking administrator(s), and clearly define duties and responsibilities.
5) Signup with Social Sites
Begin registration and setup of designated social media websites. Customize accordingly to fit the company brand.
6) Integrate Tools
Register with, install, setup, and begin using the designated 3rd party (and other utilities) for Social Networking purposes.
7) ROI & Metrics
Define terms of success from website analytics data, evaluate results, and then refine your strategy.
Social Media Cycle
1) Define Strategy
Identify which social media sites you will incorporate into your company work-flow, who will maintain those accounts, and what type of material you will be posting.
2) Establish Presence
Sign up with each of the chosen social media websites. Fill out all of the profile details and upload your personal or company profile image. On the sites that allow for it, customize the design, color, and layout to be consistent with your company brand.
3) Identify Tools
Many different social networking sites allow for certain 3rd party tools that enhance the experience and marketing potential with these services. Identifying the tools that will work for your cause is important to streamline productivity. Three application-types that we utilize are: Automated updates, social management, and networking building.
4) Build Network
With many of the right tools in place, there are still many times where you will have to personally partake in building your social network of followers/friends. The tools listed above will assist in doing so, however it often requires your personal attention to generate the best results. In social media terms, a network usually consists of individuals who are considered followers, friends, or subscribers of your social media profile.
5) Build Relationships
Adding people to your networks for the purpose of marketing has no value if the people within those lists do not have some form of relationship with you or your company. Social networking presents you with the opportunity to capitalize on the opt-in and non-invasive marketing effect of personalized engagement. By establishing your company as a resource of information, advice, or expertise on a given subject matter, the more influential your business will be over your target audience. The more trust that there is built between a viewer and the business, the more likely the viewer will either directly do business with, or refer to others whenever the opportunity arises.
Social media marketing is not simply a “set-up and forget” type of marketing environment. It is a fast-paced and constantly evolving atmosphere that requires human interaction to reach its full potential. The tools listed above do in fact make many of the tedious tasks much simpler to manage. However, without regular updating and maintenance, your company’s social media marketing potential will steadily decrease over time.
1) Strong Brand Presence
Since all social media websites are essentially a community, creating a distinct identity to resonate with your viewers will help you stand apart from your competitors. I’ve had a lot of people tell me “My logo is just fine. It resonates with my viewers, and there are a lot of reasons it works.” Well as much as that may be true, a logo in and of itself is simply the representative of the brand. A strong brand sets the standards for how all visual information is displayed either internally or to the target audience. A brand also makes connections with the cultural, rational, subliminal, and emotional qualities of the end-user. It identifies their needs, spending patterns, biases, influence, and much more. A strong brand summarizes the key values of the company, and translates that message into a visual presentation. I’ve noticed a good deal of my clients originally under the impression that branding is simply the quick efforts of a graphic designer creating a symbol and giving it a title. Know what you are paying for, and chances are if you’re paying $25-200, you’re not getting a brand. You’re getting a graphic designer’s “best shot” at getting it right (with a logo), without going through the true process to make your company look and feel like an industry leader.
A true identity consists of consistent high-quality design applied across a variety of media, such as:
Business Cards, Direct Mail, Post Cards, Envelopes, Letterheads, Mailing Labels, White Papers, Data Sheets, Business Plan, Flyers, and even Apparel. A logo should also be created using vector-based illustration program such as Adobe Illustrator, and should have the ability to be resized to any scale without losing resolution quality.
For logo design samples, please visit www.graphics.ms/portfolio/identity
1) Custom Twitter Background
Any use of your company name, or any marketing platform used should incorporate the company brand in some way. A Twitter background can also be strategically created to include a paragraph of info, links to the company website or other locations, and so on. It is a great opportunity to create an affinity for the brand by demonstrating consistency with the brand and distinction among other users. I create High-Quality Twitter Backgrounds for my clients as well.
2) Have a Professional Website
Display your company’s website on your Twitter profile. From my experience, Twitter can generate anywhere from 20-200 hits (or more) per day for your website (depending on how you use it). Also, take a look (using Google) at some of your competitors’ websites. Find out which companies are the “market leaders”, and do what you can to either replicate or build upon the tools and features they are using. For examples of website designs that we’ve created, please visit www.graphics.ms/portfolio/web.
3) Writing Your Bio
Fill your bio with content with relevant keywords, and make it simple and to-the-point. Try to include a City Name if possible, and the top features about your profession. This is your chance to establish yourself as an “expert” in your field, the leading service provider or manufacturer in your area, and so on. Be creative, but also take into consideration what terms other users might be searching for.
Before initiating a social media campaign, there are a few very important factors to consider in order to maximize the potential of your efforts. Below is a list that will help you prepare yourself for the world of social network marketing:
1) Understand Target Audience
1) Age group/bracket
2) General Financial Bracket
3) Gender, ethnicity, and orientation (if applicable)
4) Psychographics & buying patterns
5) General location of target client/consumer
6) Identify specific sectors that can be eliminated from consideration
7) What associations, clubs, or organizations do my target audience members belong to?
8) What events, conferences, lectures, or other gatherings do my target audience members attend?
9) What publications, broadcasts, advertisements, or websites do my target audience members view or respond to?
10) What social media websites do my target audience members most frequent?
2) ROI & Metrics
1) Prior to initiation, how many sales were made without using social networking last month?
2) Determine how social networking increased page views to the company website.
3) Determine how many new leads or sales were made through the use of social networking.
4) How have operation costs been reduced by implementing of social networking?
5) Determine retention estimates: number of bookmarks, downloads of company material, etc.
6) How many new members/followers/friends/subscribers have company profiles accumulated?
7) Which social media networks work best for the company? Adjust the time spent on each.
8) Track which updates received the most views/clicks. Then modify or update campaign accordingly.
9) Identify status of competition, and set goals to reflect or improve their marketing techniques.
10) Determine growth objectives and adjust campaign to achieve the new goals.