Choosing Your Channels… You Don’t Need to Be Everywhere
Today we will talking about social media channels. We’ll cover which channels you should be using and why it’s okay NOT to be on all of them.
Why do you need to be on social media at all?
You would not be the first business owner to wonder… so we’re going to start today’s show off with a few Online Marketing Myths that NEED to DIE.
There are many things that business owners “know” about marketing. Unfortunately, there are some rumors and myths that persist in online marketing even though there is little, if any, truth to them in practice.
With nearly 70% of US adults using at least one social media site in 2017, this is not an area of marketing you will want to ignore!
This data come from Pew Research Center and the numbers are only going up from 50% in 2010 to 60% in 2013 and 70% in 2017.
7 Most Common Misconceptions About Online Marketing
1. Social Media is Free
Myth: Whomever started this rumor did everyone a huge disservice. Come on, people! Since when has anything that you do in your business EVER been FREE? There is always some investment of time, energy, resources, or money (and usually some combination.) Realistically, there is nothing worth doing that is truly free and for good reason. If it were so easy then everyone would do it and it wouldn’t likely be very effective. All this myth does is give business owners unrealistic expectations and ultimately, disappointment.
Truth: Most social media platforms are free at the basic level for businesses and free for casual users, but to get the maximum benefit there are fees for extra features and analytics. There are also advertising costs associated with reaching your target audience; Facebook is pay to play for businesses. Perhaps the most overlooked cost is the time and energy. Content doesn’t plan and create itself! This is also where tool costs come into play; managing business accounts on social media without tools quickly becomes a full-time job.
2.You Don't Need a Website
Myth: If you have a successful Facebook page, then you don’t need a website. (This also applies to any social or blogging sites on which you participate that you don’t OWN.)
Truth: You need a website. Period. It should be your hub and it’s owned property. Don’t get me wrong… Facebook is great! But, repeat after me… It does not replace a traditional website. A few reasons why this is the case:
3. If You Build It They Will Come
Myth: You created a gorgeous website, set up all the social media pages that you can think of, and even listed your business in every online directory you could find… so now the leads will coming rolling in!
Truth: You completed step one and it’s a great start, but this is not Field of Dreams. People will not magically find your site. At a minimum you need a strategic plan to follow that lays out what type of content to create, where to publish it, and how often (and you actually have to follow it!)
4. Your Millennial Intern Can Run Your Online Marketing
Myth: Millennials are naturally technologically advanced and know how to do everything online because they grew up online. You can set them loose on your social networks and reap the benefits. (This also applies to younger family members working in your business.)
Truth: Generally speaking, Millennials ARE comfortable using social networks. The huge caveat to this is that they have experience using them for personal use, not business!
Would you hand over your accounting or business planning duties to an intern without training, supervision, and oversight? No? Then why would you do it with your marketing that everyone sees? That’s not a great idea.
Now, by all means, have your intern work with a seasoned professional and they will both benefit from learning a new point of view and way of doing things.
There is a massive difference between knowing how to use a tool and having the experience to know what you should do with it.
5. Email Marketing is Dead
Myth: People are inundated with email and the last thing they want to do is get more. Therefore, email marketing is dead.
Truth: Email marketing is far from dead. As a matter of fact, it’s still the number one driver of sales in business. It’s a great way to connect with your current, past, and potential clients.
The key is to segment your database and send messages to each segment that make sense. One message does not fit all.
Allow people to opt in and control what type of messages they want to get and then give them what they ask for in a reasonable manner. (What is reasonable varies by industry!)
6. SEO Is Over
Myth: Google has killed Search Engine Optimization. The algorithms have stomped it out and now it’s a waste of time, energy, and money.
Truth: Gaming the system has always been a bad idea and risky investment even when it was somewhat effective.
Posting quality articles to your blog, building relationships that lead to natural backlinks, getting published on 3rd party news sites, and other legitimate SEO friendly activities have always been and will always be a good use of resources.
7. You Have to Be Everywhere
Myth: Your business needs to be on every social media site to be seen. Now. Today. All at once!
Truth: That’s just silly. It is far better to go deep on one social channel than to go wide on all of them. If you have the time, budget, and resources to do it all at once, then yay for you! Go for it!
That is hardly ever the case, so more often than not you will need to research where your ideal clients are most active online and focus your attention there first. People’s habits change over time and you may need to adjust accordingly.
How many of these myths have you heard, yourself? The good news is that today I will help you work through the last myth “You have to be everywhere.” Whew!
Download your Free Avatar Workbook to create your own client magnetizing marketing messages!
Social networks are a permanent fixture.
They are also constantly evolving...
In the US market, gender, income, and education level have little impact on whether an individual has adopted social networking as an activity. Meaning, everyone is in!
However, Age does remain a factor with younger internet users being more likely to engage in social networking overall and adopt specific social platforms.
While social platforms offer tools that let us target particular audience segments, it’s up to us to track how these audience bases and their behaviors are shifting.
Don’t panic. I volunteer as tribute! I will keep you up to date, so you can stay in YOUR genius. Sound good?
The first part of developing your social media strategy should be deciding what channels you want to be active on. If you’ve already started using some, that’s okay!
Most entrepreneurs and small businesses will want to choose 1-2 channels to prioritize at first. Once you’ve gotten the hang of that you can (and should) add more channels later.
How do you know what channels to choose?
Determine the answers to the following:
If your target audience is full of millennials it would make sense to be active on Snapchat and Instagram.
If your target audience is 55 you’d be better off with Facebook or LinkedIn.
(Activity & Engagement are related but different. Activity is time in the platform. Engagement is INTERACTION with the content. Commenting or sharing is engagement. Watching or looking is activity.)
Your answers to these questions should show you where to focus first. Try ranking the social networks from most to least useful and address them in order.
What Are Your Goals for Social Media Marketing?
Goal setting is a key piece of your social media marketing plan.
Without goals, your social media efforts are directionless with no destination or path to success.
Without goals how do you measure your efforts?
You need goals. Here’s how to go about setting them up:
Identify Your Business Objectives
These are overarching benefits to your business that social media marketing can help achieve.
Here are a few examples of business objectives:
Once you have chosen a business goal you can tie it to a social media goal…
You may have multiple goals for your business and for social media. Focusing on each one individually and then blending them together as a whole is part of this marketing strategy planning process.
Determine Your Social Media Goals
Now that you know what your business objectives are, you need to figure out how the social media goals you’re going to set will help achieve your business objectives.
Your social media goal should help achieve your business objective. For example, if you wanted to sell more vacations to college students, you might set a goal to increase your percentage of social media followers who are in college.
Set KPIs and Goals For Each Social Media Channel
Wait a second! What’s a KPI and how is that different from my goal? Eh?
A Key Performance Indicator (KPI) is a measurable value that demonstrates how effectively a company is achieving key business objectives.
Organizations use KPIs to evaluate their success at reaching targets.
Example Social Media KPIs
Social Media Goals are the Specific Numbers You Want to Hit for Each KPI
Example Social Media Goals
Make sure your Business Objectives, Social Media Goals, and KPIs are in alignment. The last step is to find the social platform that best supports your goals!
***You can get extra tips and advice on which channels make the most sense for your business in the Social Savvy Geek Show Insiders Facebook Group.***
Special Guest, Erin Cell
Social Media, especially Facebook, is constantly changing. Erin shares her predictions for Facebook and Instagram in 2018.
Erin Cell is the owner of Socially Powered, a local social media marketing agency and the founder and genius behind Social Media Day Denver. She’s my friend, my peer, my social sister in Colorado Women in Social Media, and my accountability partner for all things Amy Porterfield. Everyone needs someone traveling the same path who understands your daily struggles and wins. Erin is my girl.
Find out more about Erin at SociallyPowered.
Is email marketing dead?
It's still the number one driver of sales online...
Your email database is your most valuable asset.
Show it some love!
Social Media Channels Were Not Created Equal
When you're choosing where to focus, keep in mind your business goals, marketing goals, and how your business works for YOU. Remember to prioritize and focus your efforts first where they will get the most engagement and traffic for your business.
I have a question for you...
Answer me on your favorite social channel.
What industry are you in and which social media platform are you focusing on inside your business right now?