One common misconception amongst small business is that social media marketing is a “set it and forget it” type of activity. One example may be creating a Facebook page and expecting customers to like the page without promoting it. The same could be said for YouTube videos, traffic to a blog, or Twitter followers. Unless you’re a household name (the Starbucks, American Airlines, General Motors brands of the world) you’ll have a difficult time if you adopt a build it and they will come type of mentality. It’s not that your blog isn’t worth reading or the media you’ve created isn’t of high quality, it’s the fact that your brand needs a marketing push to attract attention.
Brand Equity: A term developed to describe the financial value of a brand to the bottom line profit of a business. – ESOMAR Market Research
The amount of Brand Equity a business has will determine to some extent the type of social media marketing push that will be needed in order to be successful.
Don’t waste what you’ve already earned.
If your business isn’t 100% new and starting from the ground up, hopefully you’ve established at least a small amount of brand equity. Even if your operating a small business, you’ll have customers who already know of and trust your brand name. Use this to your advantage. If your business has foot traffic promote your social media channels in your physical location. The same can be said for print material, email marketing, and website traffic. You already have customers that do business with you, your objective is to make it known that they should connect with you online. Give them a reason to connect and a lot of them will. Don’t be afraid to reach out to loyal customers, friends + family, and other fans in the beginning to gain some traction.
Leverage the power of established networks
If your jumping into a new channel, use the community you’ve already built elsewhere to gain some initial momentum. Have Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and your blog play nice together and cross promote. Tell your Facebook fans why they should follow you on Twitter. Tell your YouTube subscribers why they should read your company blog.
Build on your success
No matter how slow you start out or how trivial initial marketing efforts many seem, it’s key to get started sooner than later and avoid stalling. Building brand equity is similar to a snow ball rolling downhill. The sooner you get it rolling, the larger it’ll be in the future. Patience is a virtue and if done right (and with enough attention) soon enough your social media marketing efforts will pay off exponentially.