This post is based on my recent observation of social media activities of small businesses and startups. One thing which I noticed is most of the small businesses and startups are all on most of the social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest etc.) just for the sake of it. They are there because everyone has been either on it or at least talking about them.
How I could say that? By their activities on those platforms and number of followers. Many of them haven’t even posted or even shared anything for the last 6 months. Their followers are in mere double digits and their profiles are incomplete most of the times.
Alarming, Isn’t it?
So I have come up with 5 C’s which will help small businesses and startups select the RIGHT network to use for their marketing efforts. Here they are:
1. CUSTOMERS: Before you signup on any social network for your business marketing, you need to analyze one thing- ARE YOUR CUSTOMERS ON THAT NETWORK? If not, there is no point hanging around there as you are not here to impress anyone; you are here to help your prospects in need of your solution. Be active on those networks where your prospects and customers are active on- whether they use it for gathering information or recreational purposes.
Tip: There are simple search functions available on each network to figure out whether the right audience is there or not. For eg: Twitter advanced search can help you identify personnel in your business location. So login using your personal account and do a search, find out whether your prospects are there and then signup.
2. CONTEXT: Next C which will help you identify the right network for your business is context. In simple words, CONTEXT means why you want to be on social network?. What are your goals? Is it for lead generation, branding, customer service or just to impress people? You should select the RIGHT goals which will help you decide on the RIGHT network for accomplishing that.
Tip: Prepare a simple goal sheet using Microsoft word or powerpoint which should help you in selecting the right networks. For eg: for identifying the RIGHT influencers, Twitter is the best platform.
3. CONTENT: Another important C to keep in mind while selecting the right network for your social media marketing efforts is Content. Contents are the warriors who will fight for you in your social media battle. Ask questions like: What type of contents can you prepare for your social media audience? What are your strengths when it comes to content development? What kind of content will work for your target audience? Once you have answers to these questions, you can select the RIGHT networks much easier.
Tip: Check all your content repository to understand what all is available right now. Use them to the maximum. For eg: you own a restaurant in Bangalore, it will make absolute sense to create graphical content of your delicacies for your target audience and spread the content using networks like Instagram and Pinterest.
4. COMPETITION: Next C which is one of the most important is Competition. And this provides the easiest way to select the social network for any organization. Just do a random search to see which all networks your competitors are active on. Based on their activities and success, you can select your social networks easily.
Tip: If you are a marketing software startup, check up on competition companies on social. Which networks they are active on, how many followers they have, what all they are posting etc. Get onto it and start hustling.
5. COMMITMENT: The final C is Commitment which is the most crucial for all the success you will ever achieve with your social marketing efforts. Commitment is the fuel which will help you achieve your social media goals. It’s good to check your commitment by answering questions like Are you in for a long run (because social media marketing is a marathon; not a sprint)? Are you serious about social media marketing (If not, do not even waste time on it)? Are you focused enough for it (If not, get it right otherwise its difficult to hit targets which you do not even know)?
Get all these 5 C’s RIGHT and trust me, you will succeed in your social media marketing for your business.