When you own a business, there are a lot of difficult decisions to make, usually on a daily basis. And as your business expands, those decisions will become more frequent and likely more complicated. That is why it helps to have some resources that can point you in the right direction or at least give you advice that will help you make the best possible decision. One area in which you will need to make decisions like these is in your marketing campaign, and that includes social media. There are many different elements and strategies to implement and deciding which to pursue depends on many other aspects of your business. In other words, determining how to make the best decisions in terms of your social media campaign involves answering the five other important questions of who, what, where, when, and why.
WHO Are You Trying to Reach in your marketing campaign?
The very first step in any marketing campaign is determining who you are marketing to. If you do not know who your target demographic should be, then your campaign may fall on deaf ears, or blind eyes in terms of digital marketing. Before you design a campaign, you need to take the time research who your customer is, based on the product you sell. Who is currently buying it? Who should be buying it? Knowing this can help you delve deeper into finding out what interests these kinds of people have, where they tend to live, how they use your product, and what compels them to buy more. In other words, you want to create a general description of the personality of your main type of customer or the customer you are trying to reach. That will allow you determine the direction your campaign should take.
WHAT Do You Want Them to Know?
Once you know who you are going to be talking to, it is time to decide what you want them to know as a result of being exposed to your campaign. A start-up business may be solely interested in getting customers to know their name and that they exist for brand recognition purposes. If you are already an established business though, your campaign may mean to excite customers about your latest product. The theme of your campaign will likely revolve around what you want customers to know. It will determine the pictures you post, the links you want them to follow, and the updates you write. Try focusing on one aspect at a time instead of shoving everything you wish they knew about your company into one campaign. Most people will not stick around for lengthy posts and you do not want to get them confused or overwhelmed with all the information you are giving them. Keep your message simple and you will get better results.
WHERE Can You Reach Them?
With your customer in mind and your campaign goal outlined, you need to find a place to publish your marketing. If your customers are local and professional, you might do best using a platform like LinkedIn for your campaign. If your target demographic is young and trendy though, sites like Facebook and YouTube will serve you well. You will also need to remember the what for this decision. If you plan to use pictures, links, and paragraph posts for your campaign, then Facebook and MySpace are the best possible venues. If you want to use video for this particular strategy though, obviously YouTube is the best choice. And if this will be a series of small, catchy posts with links perhaps, Twitter will work just fine. Of course, when you can, you should try to involve multiple social media sites in order to get the most exposure.
WHEN Should You Be Reaching Out to Them?
In terms of posting updates, videos, and links, the timing and frequency with which you post them will affect their success. Small one or two sentence posts could really be posted daily, ideally around lunchtime or just as people are getting off work. They are more likely to do a quick check on their mobile devices during this time, so small posts work better for small screens and quick browsing. If you are going to post something more lengthy, consider doing it at night once people have unwound for the day and are going through all their social media sites, whether for their nightly entertainment or to update their own pages.
These kinds of posts should not be more than once a week though, otherwise they will get tired of your frequent sales pitches that fill up their newsfeeds. Although they will have the opportunity to see your post at any time, no matter when you post it, most people do not scroll down that far in their news feeds. That means they really only notice the top page or two worth of their friends’ posts. Because most people sort their posts by the most recent, you want to make sure yours comes in at the top just as they sit down to go through their news. You can also gain a top spot in the news feeds of some by making sure you have a lot of interaction with your post. This is called sorting by popularity, but you will need a lot of highly engaged friends or fans to make that happen.
WHY Should They Listen to Your Social Media Marketing?
The last aspect to consider when deciding what elements to include in your social media marketing campaign has to do with why. You need to look at your company from an internet user’s perspective. Ok, so you’re a business and you have something you want to sell to me. So what? Why should I read your posts? Why should I care? And more importantly, why should I buy? Convincing people that your product or service is worth buying is truly the most difficult part of running a business. You will need to make sure your marketing strategy includes persuasion that answers their why questions. Perhaps your product solves an age-old problem. Maybe it makes a difficult task easier. Maybe it is exciting and new and everybody is getting one. One the other hand, it may just be a truly enjoyable and entertaining purchase that would make their time and money worthwhile.
Although at first, these questions sound simple and insignificant, they are extremely important in terms of building your marketing campaign. Coming up with the answers will take time, effort, and insight into the personalities of your target demographic. Researching in order to find the answers and using them accordingly in your campaign plan though, will make your strategy much more effective. Knowing the answer to these questions will also make decisions regarding your marketing strategy must easier. So the next time you find yourself wondering how to decide between all of the potential elements that could go in to your online marketing campaign, consider first the who, what, where, when, and why.
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