Monday, 30 November 2015

Essentials to Building Your Brand on Social Media

Join us at Entrepreneur magazine's Growth Conference, Dec. 15 in Long Beach, Calif. for a day of fresh ideas, business mentoring and networking. using social media for marketing Register here for exclusive pricing, available only for a limited time.Whether you want to sell products, gain subscribers, persuade followers to a point or sway the hearts and minds of readers to your cause, they’ve got to know who you are in the first place.Your ability to encourage any of these actions comes from your brand’s authority -- and one of the best ways to build that is through the savvy use of social media. In fact, recent research from Econsultancy shows that 71 percent of brands plan to invest more heavily in social media in the coming year to reach new followers and build brand reputation. Today, social media spending makes up a small fraction of most business’ marketing budgets. A recent Duke University survey found that, on average, social media spending accounted for just 9% of the overall budget. But that number is projected to expand to nearly 22% in the next five years.Clearly, ecommerce marketers recognize the power of social media to connect with an audience. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram are nearly ubiquitous in our lives. They’re like the 21st-Century Main Street; we use them to communicate, find information quickly, and increasingly, to shop for products. For Web businesses, effective social marketing represents real value. Social networks offer new ways to reach first-time customers, engage and reward existing customers, and showcase the best your brand has to offer. Your social network profiles and the content you share are as important as a business’ storefront signage and displays in the 1950s.
Why? Social networks are evolving from merely places to find and distribute content; they’re becoming commerce portals. Businesses that integrate social media into their marketing strategy – from customer acquisition, social media marketing strategies to sales, to re-engagement campaigns – will benefit. Small Business Marketing | As the heaviness of social media signals (Facebook likes, Google pluses, tweets, stumbles, pins) increase for marketers, it’s vital for any business to involve their community of fans and super-fans with shareable content. How we uphold relationships and communicate with each other both personally and professionally will never be the same because social media has made it all so much more accessible, effective and fun. For business owners and marketers, being successful in marketing through social media means figuring out how you can plug your brand into those things in a creative, fun and entertaining way that can result in helping to build both sympathy for and loyalty to your brand.Establishing goals is an important requirement for any project. There is no human effort that cannot benefit from goals. In daily life, we can establish enduring goals but also short, mid-term and long term goals. A marketing plan can be formal or informal, but it should detail who your customers are, where they get their particulars and how you’re going to deliver your marketing message to them.Social media is a vastly underutilized instrument for delivering personalized content. This channel can be tricky because if the content is not custom-made enough due to automation, the user will know it and the brand will look like spam. However, with enough profile data, a customized social communication at the right time can be a powerful marketing tool.
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Choose networks that support your brand image

According to Convince and Convert, 22 percent of Americans use social media multiple times a day, making it one of the best mediums on which to build your brand. social media marketing manager There are literally hundreds of social networks out there, but most of them aren’t worth investing your time and energy.Facebook is by the far the best platform for promoting brand awareness, as nearly three quarters of Americans adults use the site. Facebook is a great platform for promoting virtually any brand, due to its very heterogeneous user base.Instagram is a great option for brands that rely heavily on images, such as clothing companies and retailers. It’s also particularly effective for reaching young adults, Hispanics and African Americans.While Google+ hasn’t taken off as well as many people predicted, it can be a great platform to reach men in the technology industry, as two-thirds of the network’s users are men, most of whom work in engineering or other technical professions.Pinterest is an excellent social network to reach women, especially for brands selling jewelry or clothing.Finally, if you operate a business-to-business company, LinkedIn is a stronger choice for promoting business-related content and connecting with other corporate influencers. It should go without saying, but you’ll create a much stronger brand reputation if you focus on creating useful content that viewers will want to share, rather than cranking out content to meet arbitrary publishing calendars or that covers subjects only you’d want to read. Every single piece of content you share should support your brand image. Remember, humor can be difficult to pull off. If you can use memes effectively, they can be powerful brand-building tools. But if you aren’t 100 percent sure how your audience will respond to your image, resist the temptation to create memes or engage in clickbait strategies that have the potential to reflect poorly on your company.
Go where your customers are. It’s a marketing maxim, and it’s never been easier to accomplish than today. marketing with social media There are many different ways social media can improve the way you interact with customers, whether they’re first-time buyers or loyal fans. Marketers can see in real-time what your audience cares about most, their interests, the conversations they’re having and what they like. Use your social networks to better segment audience and understand your target demographics. This will help you optimize your campaigns and deliver more targeted messaging.Immediacy is big in social media; we want information and we want it now. That’s why social networks are so great for customer service. They enable businesses to quickly respond to customer inquiries. Plus, social media makes it easier to spot and respond to unpleasant customer experiences. Develop a strategy for responding to customer inquiries via social media. Your social profile is really your storefront. Customers are now using social networks to research companies and products. Your Yelp, Facebook, LinkedIn and other social pages provide the perfect opportunity to make a lasting impression. Start by optimizing your profiles and making important information easy-to-find. Also, encourage your existing customers to review your company on Facebook, Google, or Yelp.Don’t think of social media as another way to generate sales and drive traffic. Use these platforms to demonstrate value and validate your marketing efforts. Take a look at the camera maker GoPro on Facebook; very rarely is does the company share content that is designed to sell product. Instead, their posts highlight the best quality videos and pictures taken on their cameras, and they effectively showcase the brand. Develop a social content strategy that is designed to highlight the best, most unique, most surprising thing about your brand.

Appreciate your Followers | Small Business Marketing

The more appreciated your followers feel, the more likely they are to share your content with their networks. People like compliments and companies do too. social media marketing software A large part of success in marketing essentially comes from ‘paying it forward’ to others. If you simply show your genuine and enthusiastic gratitude for other people, they will return the favor and then some. Rewarding your fans is a great way to show how much you appreciate their role in your achievement.If you’re running social media for your business, you must listen to your customers and respond quickly in order to be fully effective. Even if you don’t want to respond to a post (for example, a bad product criticism), it is important that you show your appreciation for their initiative in reaching out to you.Small businesses can be practical when it comes to finding new followers. One way to accomplish this is to find Twitter profiles of your industry’s authority data. Set up custom alerts for specific terms relating to the company’s customers, industry, influencers, and trends. Create custom searches on the social networks by keywords, clients, and also the competition. The more a business listens and learns the more knowledgeable and able it becomes in serving their clients and growing their social media presence.Attracting a high number of fans and supporters isn’t the best way to measure success if your followers can’t help your business. You’ll want to put a calculable outcome in place along with a timeframe in which to achieve the goal. It is important to remember that social media engagement is no different any other marketing strategy. It is just one piece of the pie, and in the end, what we learn should be measurable on some level. It’s the only way to know if you are achieving your business aims and goals.
The days of free marketing on social sites are numbered. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have all made paid advertising a more important part of their businesses, how to use social media for marketing and ecommerce marketers will likely have to increase their paid advertising spends to reach the same audience. Think about it: Facebook and LinkedIn have made it much, much easier for marketers to target customer segments, by age, location, interests, job title and much more. Shopify, an online retail start-up, saw a 50-percent reduction in cost-per-lead thanks to the Facebook Custom Audience segmenting tool.A recent study found that YouTube led all social networks in its ability to convert users. There are a few reasons for this. First, video is an amazing way to showcase your product. Consumers are researching the products they buy online more thoroughly these days, and video provides an interactive way to see these products in action before they buy. Additionally, video is much more engaging than text, and when your audience is more engaged, conversion follows.A number of tech companies are making products that enable marketers to measure every aspect of their social campaigns – from top-performing networks, to the types of social content that works, and the actions that customers take. These kinds of social data analytics tools make it easier for ecommerce marketers to tie social campaigns to results. It’s been said that every brand is a publisher, and today, anyone with an Internet connection and a social profile is a publisher. Take a look at Starbucks, the coffee company. They don’t just sell coffee; Starbucks is an Instagram rock-star, as one of the most-followed brands on the site.Today, it’s extremely easy for businesses to generate content and distribute it directly to their audiences. We can look at GoPro again. They use produce and curate more effectively than most on the GoPro Channel.

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