By now we all accept that Social Media Channels and Smart Mobile devices have revolutionised the way businesses brand, communicate and present themselves to prospects, clients, suppliers and others important to growing a business. Now that we are using these amazing technologies to broadcast our messages, have we stopped to think about our activities online and whether we are using it to get the best outcome for our business?
In my digital marketing consulting assignments, I’m often approached by business owners who complain that despite a respectable presence and active participation online, they haven’t been able to engage their audience in a manner that eventually leads to a business transaction.
There are several reasons why we may not be achieving the success we deserve despite dedicating time to engage with our online connections. After many years of active participation online, I have identified three common practices most people demonstrate online which can lead to fast tracking the success we deserve! Here they are:
Are You Listening?
Any marketing expert will tell you that before you think of developing a new product or offer a service, it’s important to know what your client wants. You may get all excited about creating a new product, but if not enough people want it, you may be in for a bitter disappointment. Worse, if you’ve invested a large amount of money in product development and marketing you could be in for a rude shock.
The same happens with our digital presence online. Social media channels such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+, Twitter and also some forums in your niche are the perfect listening device to uncover the fears and frustrations of members in your networks. You’ll also find out about the hopes and aspirations of your prospects and customers.
It’s important to remember that most people online are searching for a solution to a problem area in their life or a business challenge. You could have the answer or solution to what they seek. That’s why you have to “listen” to what they are saying by reading posts or watching relevant videos to gather your intelligence. This way you will be able to prepare meaningful content instead of posting information you think is important, but they are least interested in.
Are You Shouting?
Like any business owner we are passionate about the products we sell or the services we provide. With increased competition and widening global opportunities we now have to find new ways to market our products/services online. Pushy salespersons and those irritating telephone calls you get from a call-centre as we are about to sit down for dinner are no longer effective.
Unfortunately, I see that this approach is practiced on social media channels as well. If you look at a cross-section of business pages on LinkedIn, Google+ and Facebook, you will find that most of the communication focuses on the products or services offered by the company. This is where most business owners get it wrong and feel frustrated because they don’t see a spurt in sales a day after they’ve tweeted about a sensational offer to their followers.
The only shouting we should do is to uniformly brand your social media channels, so visitors who follow your business on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus instantly identify you and perceive you as a reputable business.
Are you Collaborating Online?
Now that we’ve gathered our intelligence by listening to what others are sharing, tweeting and broadcasting, what’s the best way to interact online?
The answer is to start collaborating. This is the key to fast tracking our online success!
Begin by answering some questions asked in groups on LinkedIn or on forums in your niche. While you’re there, ask some questions so you can find out what your customers want. This is the most inexpensive market research technique you can use.
Use a mix of text, images and video to get your message across effectively.
Show your appreciation by Liking, Sharing and Commenting on posts made by others in groups or on their timeline. If you disagree with a post or comment explain why you disagree and state an alternate approach or solution you think will work better. Always be polite and refrain from discrediting others.
For more ways on how to collaborate online, browse some of my earlier posts which will help you get started.
Reviewing at your past online activities on your social media channels, can you recognise where you may have gone wrong? I hope you know what to do. In simple terms Start Listening, Stop Shouting and Start Collaborating. Soon you’ll find your credibility soaring and members of your network will seek you out for help. Once they do, you’ll have them eager to buy your products and services. When the unsolicited LEADS start to come, then you will know that your Digital Marketing presence is working for you and your company!
What’s important is to develop a Digital Marketing Strategy, you can quickly implement…a road map to ensure you and the team is collaborating to enhance your online presence!
At solomoIT, we specialise in providing customised training, consulting and strategy formulation for your digital marketing requirements. Give us a call on 1300 430 949 or +613 8630 2810 for a consultation and to get started on enhancing your social media presence and online reputation.