When it comes to web services, there are always people who think that they know best, that from reading a “beginners guide” or doing a 60 minute online course that they’ve mastered SEO or can design and develop with the very best of them, however, it’s arguable that no service is treated this way more than social media marketing – and in all fairness, it’s not hard to see why.
Millions of people use social networking websites every single day for everything from contacting loved ones to virtual farming, so if someone invests so many hours of their lives using a platform, it’s only natural that they think they’re qualified to do pretty much anything on it, however that is where many people get a nasty shock. Marketing through channels such as Facebook and Twitter is not the same as using it for every day purposes, it is a different beast which requires different tact and different thought processes, which leads many people to fail and give up, writing SMM off at nonsense. Even if they don’t give up though, unfortunately expectations don’t change and many people still think that they’re going to go from unknown to social media sensation overnight, and that’s the thing, it can’t be rushed, and any attempts to rush it can actually have a negative effect.
Social media marketing success takes a measured and intelligent approach, and it’s always best to remember MRS.
MOMENTUM – Like moving a car, momentum is key behind getting your social media marketing campaign moving. You aren’t just going to jump from 0 to 100 in just a few seconds, you’re going to need to get the wheels turning, which is the hardest part, and you’re going to need people (followers) to give you a push. However, as more people start to give you a push and the wheels start to move faster, things will get easier and you’ll be heading towards the fast lane.
RESTRAINT – The British may be famously associated with phrases such as “keep a stiff upper lip” and “keep calm and carry on”, however one thing we definitely do not see people keeping calm over is social media marketing – or specifically, when it becomes a struggle. Many people make a few posts and then when they don’t get the massive engagement that they predicted, they panic, and try to solve this problem – with more posts. Posts galore. Posts at 9am, posts at 9:05am, post after post until they’ve posted so much that they cannot be ignored, right? Wrong. That is nothing but a sure fire way to get ignored/unfollowed/removed from any list. It get’s on peoples nerves and it will not endear you to them, thought has to be put into numbers and timings, the number of posts that are going to be made per day, and at which times they are going to be made.
SUBSTANCE – Style is one thing, but substance is key when it comes to succeeding on social media – you need to say things which are actually going to engage people. Don’t just post random rubbish, post something which is relevant to you and your followers. The 2 most common pitfalls which we see people falling in to are:
- Posting nothing but random click bait articles – EG: “Oh my god you won’t believe these pictures of Brad Pitt” which are both spammy and completely irrelevant to your business.
- Posting nothing but links/sales posts over and over again with 0 engagement value. – EG: “Click here, buy now”.
These are sure fire ways to disengage people and make sure that your profile page is a cold and lonely place, so avoid it at all costs. Of course it’s fine to post links to your website (after all you’re here to promote yourself) but make sure that it is mixed in with useful engaging questions, good content and intriguing discussions which are going to get people involved. This will prove to be a much more fruitful tactic as people return to the discussion to reply to comments, see what else has been said, or to see what other exciting content you have been posting and then gradually your brand name and what you do will become ingrained in their minds, making them much more likely to share your page with others, and ultimately choose you when making a purchase.
Social media marketing is not as easy as many people think it is when they go into it, but it is also not as hard as many people make it on themselves through unnatural, misguided tactics. Use your brain and think about how you would market face to face with people, then translate that into the worlds of Facebook and Twitter, add the fantastic benefits that they bring, and you’re on the way to a winner. Just don’t forget the MRS.