Knowing the Ropes: The Ups and Downs with Social Media Marketing
Once you get good at something, it’s easy to fall into a slightly care-free life. The hard work of whatever you were learning or overcoming, be it a trigonometry problem, painting the house for the first time, or asking out that new love prospect, is behind you. Now you can sit back, relax, and just plug away at a reduced pace.
Life has a tendency to give us startling wake-up calls, and sometimes our easy periods are shaken by sudden changes that we aren’t capable of handling.
This is the case of social media marketing. It’s a type of digital marketing in a class by itself. Sure, anyone can get on to a social media site, create an account, and have fun chitchatting away with their peers. However, business types see it differently; they see how many people are using social media, and see green. But then, they make the mistake of proceeding to use it as they would other online marketing media, like search engine optimization (SEO). Social media doesn’t function like the other digital marketing media. Now, this does not mean that it is of no use, but it does mean you have to understand it a bit before you begin using it for your own business practices.
The Inside Perspective
As its phrasing suggests, social media is designed for peer use in a social context. That doesn’t necessarily make it the best-designed system as, say, “Google Adwords” is in terms of business practices. There are no analytics for it, and no information input system as sophisticated as keywords or optimization. In essence, social media marketing is an entity that comes across as anti-online business. But, this isn’t the case. It just means you have to have some inside perspective to see how it functions.
Approaching social media marketing as a business pro requires what they call a social media marketing strategy. If you are a Twitter or Facebook user, you’ll notice that there are banner ads by McDonald’s or Starbucks there, listing new offers and promotions. They are using social media marketing strategies.
You have to do the same. Get on the top social media sites, and establish an account in the name of your business. Especially if you are a small business, and doing small business social media, you have to go about adding friends, colleagues, and potentially interested parties you search out on the social media site into your pool of connections, like you add friends for your personal social media accounts. Watching how many folks “like” your work and sending them promotional e-mails via the social media site will help you with promotion.
This, in itself, accounts for the social media SEO that is similar to what happens in other digital formats, except you are doing the work yourself. This sounds cumbersome, but it can be fun, too. You can exchange information directly with clients and make your social media interactive to attract people to your own establishment, making them feel part of something that is new and exciting. This is when social media marketing becomes more than just work.
Staying on Top
Social media marketing is really social media management. It’s all about what you put into it and, in effect, how you stay on top of it as an ongoing outlet for your business. You have to continually make time or even some sort of schedule to do updates with new promotions, graphic ads, and offers directly from your web site.
Finding new social media with some intensive research helps, too—you can establish yourself on those new sites, and thus add to your list of potential business avenues. But again, you have to keep at it. Your social media marketing might take a bit more effort than your other online business measures over time, but the end results can be pretty fine at that when it comes to your business’ profits.
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