During the month of May, V2 was lucky enough to stream a live webcast from San Diego hosted by PNC Bank, featuring the one and only Mari Smith the “Queen of Facebook” herself! Mari is a true social media guru, and shared some great insights with her audience on the best way to utilize social media to grow your business. She shared her tried and true three part strategy that works with most social media vehicles out there, and emphasized Facebook as the core of her social media arsenal, because as she put it, there is no better platform than Facebook to reach targeted audiences. With over 1.65 billion people on Facebook, and users checking their pages at an average of 14 times per day, it really is an optimized platform for your business.
The main facets of the three part strategy are:
Step #1: Craft Compelling Content (has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?) –
The biggest tip here is to use VIDEO. Why is it so important? Video allows you to tell a story. This could be a story about you, a customer, a testimonial. Put simply, next to seeing someone in person, video is the next best thing. For someone checking their Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram feeds, the movement of the video is the best way to capture their attention. When creating video, use lower thirds and captions to add a written element to the video to help your message stick. A big trick of the trade is to add a call to action when you post the video on Facebook or Twitter. Several newer Facebook features such as video editing tools allow you to choose the thumbnail for your video, and Twitter now has a feature that allows you to select a short section of a longer video that you wish to play. In addition to video, using interesting images, especially ones you have taken yourself will add extra flair to your social media posts. A big question that Mari says people ask her is how often should you post? Here are her general recommendations based on experience. For Facebook, posting at a minimum of 5x/week, Twitter 1 to 6x/day, Instagram 1x/day. Using tools to manage incoming/outgoing posts like HootSuite or AgoraPulse allow you to easily organize and schedule your posts and content.
Step #2: Reach Your Ideal Customers
Facebook has revolutionized the way that you can reach your ideal customers with its Audience Insights feature. It tells you valuable information about your targeted audience, and tells you how you can better connect with them using the boost button which is a “pay to play” way to advertise to your potential customers. Now you may be asking yourself, how much reach can really be achieved by paid ads on Facebook? Can’t organic search be just as effective? Well Mari says that the current stats are that Organic search reaches only approximately between 1 to 6% of your audience. Using the boost button and another feature known as “custom audiences” on Facebook allows you to upload your current customer list directly in to Facebook. It then matches your customer list to their Facebook page, which allows you to have yet another way to connect with them.
In addition to customizing your audience, you can also create what is called “look alike” audiences. In a nutshell, Facebook will find prospects similar to those that you have imported on your email list, website visitors, or fans. You can layer other targeting options with the look alike audiences for rapid growth.
Step #3: Provide Stellar Social Customer Care
This final point is one that Mari heavily emphasized, because it resonates with her idea that people want to do business with people they know, like and trust. A good idea here is to take a look at the ways people can contact you – through Twitter, Facebook, your website, Yelp, etc. Using “DMs” or direct messaging on Facebook and twitter can be very powerful in building relationships with your customers. Posting FAQs, and training your team to respond to inquiries fast, is also key. Another great way to respond if you cannot respond right away is to set up instant replies until you are able to respond to messages with a personal response. A great tool that can help you manage all of your inbound and outbound messages on your social networks is AgoraPulse. It allows you to schedule and organize your posts and content ahead of time for the week.
If you follow these steps, and focus on the relationship marketing element, you can connect with your customers and grow your business. V2 thoroughly enjoyed producing this PNC webcast with Mari. We hope you too can put these tips to use in your social media marketing! Want to register to view the full webcast with Mari? Click Here to Register.
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