When you’re an entrepreneur or SME, we often see social networks as free marketing tools that will put us at the same level as big groups (and their huge budgets!).
Before embarking on social networks, we all have in mind the idea that they will help us spread our message faster, easier and more widely.
And especially for free. However, after working with these entrepreneurs or small structures, we wanted to put things in order and to hunt down the misconceptions we often listen to.
NO, it’s not about being on social networks, for the simple reason that everyone is there !!!
NO, it’s often not totally free and NO, it’s not just put some pictures on Facebook, by your trainee at the time of the lunch break ….
YES, social networks are an effective, massive and direct way to get in touch with your current and potential customers. But, NO, it is not so simple to realize a successful campaign on social networks, if we do not have well in mind the keys to this success.
The democratization of marketing via social networks, yes. Magic, no!
Why you will fail on social networks or how to recognize a bad Community Manager
1. He tells you that social networks are free.
We tend to think that since there is no registration fee on social networks, reaching your target is totally free. Again, this is totally wrong! Social network users are very demanding about the content they receive from brands and are (and increasingly) selective about who to follow or not.
Creating a corporate page on Facebook costs nothing, tweeting is free, but defining a content strategy and developing the ecosystem needed to support your marketing effort requires an investment in time and budget.
2. He tells you that social networks are selling.
Social networks are not a big market where everyone sells their food.
By having such a massive audience within reach, we tend to do our self-promotion in a direct and constant way on social networks. SERIOUS ERROR! We do not know anyone who follows on the social networks someone who publishes only information about his small activity, his products or his promos of the moment.
Social networks are precisely a space to create a community, a connection and interaction with others through the sharing of quality content. Brands that only publish information about themselves are considered spam and lose their community over the water.
3. It does not tell you that social networks are time-consuming.
Marketing on social networks is easy and fast: it can be done in 10 minutes during the lunch break. FALSE! It takes a LOT of time. Not only does creating valuable content take time. writing for the web takes time.
But most importantly, if you’re going into a social media campaign, you’ll have to respond to comments, be consistent in your posts, post quality content, follow in turn the people of interest to you, pay attention to the pace and time of publication of each social network, respect the editorial line of each of them, understand how they work, optimize, measure your results …
Social networks are like any other marketing strategy, they ask for planning, research, action, measurement, consistency and coherence.
4. He talks about immediate results.
Social networks will NOT give you immediate results. You will not have results overnight.
Building a community and especially getting to “connect” with it is a medium to long term job. It’s not about getting 1 million fans in a day. Our goal is to create and maintain a relationship with our audience through quality content.
Be patient !
5. He only talks to you about Facebook or Twitter.
Social media marketing would only work if you are on Facebook, Twitter and possibly YouTube. FALSE !! Not all social networks are for ALL brands. Because Facebook dominates the social media scene with over a billion users, some companies think it’s the only network that counts. But everything does not necessarily turn around Twitter and Facebook. There is obviously not only these 2 social networks. There is also Linkedin, Google+, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram.
Social Media is NOT ONLY social networks. Consider other possibilities: blogs, forums … Your ideal client may not be on Facebook, but on hyper-specialized portals that will be in total adequacy with your niche market.
6. He wants to be EVERYWHERE.
Something common when creating a marketing strategy on social networks is the temptation to be present EVERYWHERE. Once again, your customers, YOUR ideal customer, are not necessarily on all social networks. It depends on his preferences, his habits, his tastes etc. You will need to research which are the most relevant to your business and which ones will best meet your goals.
Do not “mistreat” your audience by inviting them to follow you on 50 different social networks. It would be like giving him 10 different phone numbers to call you;)
Focus first on 2-3 networks, then, once you’ve become a fixture on these networks, leverage others!
7. He does not talk to you at any time about your site.
Social networks are useless if the bases of your communication are not solid. Your presence on social networks will result in a masterful flop! Your site must remain the heart of this device.
In order to sell (which should be your main goal, do not forget it!), It is very important to look at the current situation of your site. Not necessarily on the technical part but at least on the marketing part:
Do you really communicate about the benefits of your product (and not about its characteristics)? Do you address your target correctly, in YOUR language? Is the purchase process simple for your customer?
There is no point in generating traffic to your site via social networks, if, once fallen on your visitor, run away!
8. Its priority # 1 is not the quality of your content.
This is a golden rule on the Internet. Without quality content, you will not exist on the Internet, nor on Google, nor on social networks! Think about how to get “engagement” from the content you broadcast on social networks. How to make your audience react, enter into dialogue with her. Know how to sincerely interest your customers and converse with them.
The key to success?
A WELL chose strategy: quality content, published regularly, at the right place and at the right time.
And above all, a real interest in your community that results in a sustained dialogue.
In a nutshell: show the human side of your business to inspire your prospect with the confidence to buy from you.