Friday, 28 November 2014

7 Ways You Should Use Social Media in Your Online Marketing Toolkit


Online marketing has come a long way since the inception of the Internet. Through the introductions of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram, plenty of opportunities have presented themselves for startups to increase visibility and land conversions.
Any business can profit from using social media. Even taking time to do a couple of brief social media posts or updates a day can have a positive impact and build market awareness.
Because smaller businesses often target niche audiences, they may even benefit more than companies that have massive marketing budgets. You can connect easily and network organically from personal/professional accounts without having the kind of corporate accounts that may get lost in the shuffle.
How to balance your social media strategy
It only takes one hit to rocket a brand to Internet stardom, which will expand brand awareness and drive traffic. That means that with the right content, literally anyone can hit it big at the right time.
Unfortunately, as quickly as it comes, the exposure can fade. And the science that supports the creation of the kind of content that will go viral at any given time is inexact and constantly evolving.
Obviously, one of the most prominent uses for social media marketing is as a tool to promote sales or discounts, but thinking outside the box can promote the longer-term goals of increasing media exposure and conversion rates.
Think about implementing these social media concepts to connect more deeply with your market:
  1. Target a niche in the market to create a focused following. Identify and pursue a demographic to increase the likelihood of connecting with site visitors. A business can never please its entire market. But by identifying a problem in a subsection of the market, you can provide unique solutions for that problem, and inspire brand trust and higher conversion rates.
  2. Offer opt-in choices for additional connectivity. Opt-in availability that’s well managed will encourage users who find content intriguing to agree to receive a newsletter or updates. It’s even better if a company offers to target the kind of information it sends to users.
    At that point, opt-out functionality is vital. If opt-in can be quickly promotional, an opt-out system that doesn’t work can be at least as detrimental, and likely more. Users should feel confident they have full control over the content that’s arriving in their email inbox. Receiving emails after having unsubscribed is extremely irritating and can lead to company blacklisting, which will make future email campaigns more difficult.
  3. Provide content rich in relevancy and usefulness. It’s not enough to have social media and blogs and a well-designed website. Your business should also have content that readers care about. Finding a way to connect with the audience first can provide some clues about how to nudge them toward a brand concept.
    Sometimes the most successful social media content takes two different demographics or concepts, finds the connecting link between them, and capitalizes on that. Having a unique way to reach a wider target market -- in a meaningful way -- can give your company a competitive edge.
  4. Don’t overload followers with posts. Less can often be more. Depending on the content provided on a blog or other site, several short posts may sometimes be more effective; or just a few longer posts that really delve into an issue may be the ticket.
    Once again, knowing your audience will direct you to the right answers here. It may also be helpful to know what’s trending online so the information you provide on your site is timely.
  5. Funnel traffic to your blog or website. There are several different ways to drive traffic to your company’s sites, the easiest of which is to go viral. Unfortunately, going viral is not something you can accomplish with an exact science; there’s no guarantee that any campaign will hit the jackpot.
    Another way to drive traffic involves having a trusted web host that has the support, uptime, and speed level your company requires.
  6. Get creative with ways to divert traffic from social media sites to your professional website or blog. Visual messages with hyperlinks that draw traffic to your site can be extremely successful in promoting conversion rates.
  7. Converse with your followers. Any comments on a firm’s website, blog, or social media site should be addressed in a timely and appropriate manner. According to Jessica Ann, a blogger atFatCow, it’s important to “be more social, less ‘media.’”
Retweeting others’ comments and responding to Facebook or blog posts will humanize your company and build trust among users. It’s all about focusing on what the followers -- your potential clients -- care about and addressing those issues.
Increasing sales effectively through social media strategy requires a mixture of these and other online marketing concepts. Determining the right tools for the job and maintaining the effort over time has been statistically shown to have a direct and positive correlation with building revenue.

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