Social Media as part of the Marketing Mix

 
A strong Social Media presence is becoming increasingly important for the small and medium sized businesses. Typically, businesses are using the ‘big three’ of LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook as their main platforms although Google+ is gaining in relevance and Pinterest has a strong, predominantly female, following. There are many other niche social media platforms but these are the dominant ones where business is concerned.

 

A recent survey carried out by econsultancy indicates that nearly 70% of companies agree that Social Media is integral to their marketing mix, with 66% saying that social is integral to their overall business strategy. Considering how recent a phenomenon Social Media is, these are remarkable figures and demonstrate just how far we have come to embrace a media that was once greeted with such skepticism by the business community.

 

So, do you feel that the Good Ship Social Media sailed without you? Don’t worry, you can still get onboard but you need to do some basic research and a little planning before you start. Why do you want to use Social Media platforms? Is it to increase your business profile? If it is, you will want to establish a strategy for building brand awareness, developing a loyal following and turning some of the contacts that you make into potential customers?

 

Social Media is brilliant for helpning develop new contacts, cement existing ones, and  establishing you as an industry expert in your chosen field. Used in association with your blog, a 140 character Twitter ‘taster’ is a versatile means of attracting new visitors to your site. If they like it and it is relevant to them they may sign up to your newsletter which develops the relationship even more.

 

Whatever anyone may say, social media is a quality not quantity game. It is better to have 200 followers who are genuinely interested in what you have to say, than 2,000 who don’t even read your posts. You are looking for the long term relationship and just like any relationship, this will only develop when trust has been established. Trust comes when you have monitored each others tweets and find common ground. Erratic private tweets on a business account may not suit your style in someone (or it may!).

 

When you have established trust and you believe that your product or service may be relevant to your social media friend, then that’s the time for a DM or an email and then a telephone conversation or a meeting. Many business contacts are being made on social media that lead to sales and profits being made. Don’t miss that boat!

 

However please remember that this doesn’t happen overnight and a proper strategy is required, tailored to your business profile and needs. My Marketing Guy is always happy to help turn a dormant Social Media account into one that creates a real buzz. Email me at: guy@mymarketingguy.co.uk or give me a call on 07742 664662.
November 2012

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