Social Media Marketing is the bait. It connects you to your target market and gives you the opportunity to hook someone's interest and reel them in.
Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, YouTube, and Linked In. Heard of them? These are amongst some of the most popular Social Media tools available on the market. As a small business, these tools can be a very effective way to connect with your target market and drive traffic to your website.
· Broad Reach. Connect with a large amount of individuals on a personal level.
· Opt-In. People are required to 'opt-in' to receiving your messages, which means you are communicating with people who want to hear from you.
· Word of Mouth. At the click of a button, your customers and raving fans can quickly and easily spread your message to their networks.
· Measurable. As a form of online media, it is simple to track, measure and monitor.
· Business Development. There are many different tools available that enable you to listen out for your brand or product type, giving you the opportunity to respond to people's needs and wants.
Ways small businesses can use this media include:
· Seek feedback about your products/services. Check out Coca Cola Australia on Facebook.
· Provide interesting industry-related information.
· Post exclusive content such as back-stage interviews or videos.
· Entertain your community with enjoyable or interesting content. Check out Billabong on Facebook.
· Develop & maintain relationships by engaging with prospects, customers, suppliers and alliances.
· Drive traffic to and from your Twitter, blog, Facebook, website, YouTube channel etc.
· Encourage sales through exclusive special offers.
· Broadcast announcements such as promotions and product/service updates. Check out Translink on Twitter.
· Listen and respond when your brand or product type is mentioned.
· Expand your customer service. Check out, Optus on Twitter.
Although the examples provided are of big businesses, small business can also use Social Media in similar ways.
Social Media is a long-term investment that requires a clear objective and strategy. Whilst every strategy will be different, most will focus on building relationships and engaging with your community. Therefore, Return on Investment should be measured by the level of engagement with your community, using metrics such as: number of community interactions, ratio of customer-initiated versus company-initiated messages, and number of clicks.