According to recent report in the telegraph, two-thirds of small business owners don’t think their social media effort is bringing any sales through the door…
I’m a social media trainer and do see first hand where things go abit wrong with social media in terms of lack of time spent on it, lack of direction and judgement based on technical skill and not really knowing what’s current or possible with social media.
None of the above helps with the fact that the social media landscape is changing – For instance we are moving more towards paid results – And like it or not business’ have to be on board in 2016.
I often ask, when someone criticises social media (after letting the personal hurt pass) if they have given the various channels good a good enough go – I think you need to have been using each channel efficiently for 2 whole years before choosing to ditch it, if it’s not working. Sadly no one can answer my question to say that they have – As real life and business get in the way!
Social media is all about planning
So having something worthwhile to talk about, show, shout about, discuss each day is key. I usually start at the beginning of any month with a grid which has 30 days mapped out on it (I’ll allow you to do 20 working days if you insist!). I then plot in important events that are coming up, or that I want to mention – At time of writing we had “Star Wars Day” on May the 4th and mentioning this salutes to my geekiness and love of the films.
Try doing the same?!
I’m also aware of the fact that ideally I’d like more website traffic as that converts into enquiries, which means meetings and work and monies… So a lot of my posts will direct people to my website through sharing blog posts etc – Abit of a round about way, but what ya gonna do?
I can then report on my Google Analytics at the end of the month and see what has worked and what hasn’t – I also gain feedback as to which channel is working the best.
I’m also experimenting for my own learning with paid adverts on Facebook at the moment – Just spending £60 here and there. I know it’s scatter gun but it’s giving me good insight into who is interested in my business offering and I’ve made a couple of sales of online products off of the back of it, so wins all around…
Social media isn’t for everybody
I often preach in my training that if you aren’t willing to put a genuine effort in – Then don’t bother putting in a half hearted attempt – The last thing you want is someone going to your Facebook Business Page and seeing that you haven’t updated since December 2013 – They’ll assume that you have gone out of business!
I know social media isn’t directly measurable – Except for the paid stuff maybe – It does create relational website traffic though, brand awareness, makes you look abit more VIP in your area and can be quite fun if you don’t find it a drag. I’ll often drag the selfie stick out in training sessions so that we have something fun to post. Get on-board!
If you aren’t looking to social media for indirect marketing effort, then look to give Email Marketing (MailChimp) a go if you have a decent collection of past client email addresses (different subject and you’ll need to do a search on this blog for more info) as it might help. I see great success with client campaigns that I run…
I’m also betting that social media is having more of an effect for some businesses than they realise. Last week I saw a FAB Joe Brown’s raincoat on my Facebook newsfeed. So onto the website I went (as a direct traffic URL – typed the website address into the top of my browser)… and shopped about on the site abit and bought the raincoat.
I didn’t ‘Like’ the post, or click through from there plus I was on Facebook on my mobile yet went to the site from my MacBook – Granted there will be some IP stalker tracking – But “Facebook Insights” would have shown zero social media action from me, yet Joe Brown’s post led to me purchasing.
It’s difficult for a business to measure the ‘role’ that social media has played in a scenario like that – Call that brand awareness – online vs offline almost.
Social media doesn’t have to be a waste of time, but unfortunately, the way many businesses use it – big and small – it often is.