14 August 2018 Last updated at 03:25 GMT

Why social media fires a company's marketing strategy

why-social-media-fires-a-company-s-marketing-strategySocial media has hit a new high. It no longer is something that businesses can think about including as part of their marketing strategy. It now is something NO BUSINESS can afford to not include.

During the week, I had a conversation with another provider for one of our clients. They are basically graphic designers who have done the odd website development. From my conversations with them, I am almost certain that the website developer is either a freelancer or a graphic designer who has learned to use Wordpress. There are some things that are really obvious in the work they have just completed.
The website is terrible. It does have pretty pictures, but that it! No real strategy has gone into the websites development. The home page is as long as any scroll you have ever seen - literally, right down to the floor. It is full of blank space and menu buttons that should not be on the home page let alone part of the main section of the website.

They seem to be capable graphic designers althought their understanding of brand is reasonably limited - but that is not the end of the world. A marketer can always fix this problem.

But the website is a deal breaker. Worse than that, they now proclaim to be experts in online "communications" strategies to the point whereby they think that our mutual client should not be engaging in any meaningful social media communications. "No-one is going to buy their services because they are on social media".

Is this company sitting under a rock! I know they are in a regional area of Australia - but seriously, where have they been hiding?

Every marketing strategy needs to first look at who the target audience is and understand what makes them tick and how they can integrate areas of marketing to enhance direct communication in a meaningful way.

In today's environment, no marketing strategy can survive without being fully integrated and no matter what business you have, it needs to be online and visible to your target audience and influencers in some shape or form - otherwise, you won't survive.

When I look at an online strategy, the first thing I do is look at the customer.

Then I take a look at where our clients will find them and how they will find our clients.

From a tactical perspective, many clients want things like 100,000 people clicking onto their site every month or more Twitter followers, more fans on facebook and so on. The reality is that the numbers mean nothing and any marketer knows this.

You can BUY followers on any of these platforms and have 50k people following you on Twitter in a matter of weeks, but none of them are going to buy from you or go to your website and spend time viewing what you have to offer.

They are fake. Not real. Worthless. Cost money with no real return on investment other than some short term ego feeding.

Meaningful engagement with followers, fans and people coming to your website may mean fewer numbers on your marketing strategy, but more sales and bigger profits.

Specific goals for your social media plan need to be actionable, and achievable.

Focus on:
  • Creating a buzz around your brand: product or service
  • Walk people through what you have to offer, so should they need your product or service, they know where to find it
  • Engage your social media followers in meaningful conversations that lead to inquiries, sales, referrals and word of mouth conversation
  • Gain market share through providing a better customer experience and interaction via social media networks
  • Generate leads

For those who are still not keen on social media in the business to business environment, consider the facts:
  • Facebook has more than 955 million users with a majority between 18-25; 60 percent of which are female.
  • Twitter has more than 555 million users with a majority between 26-34; 57 percent female. Communicate in real time and get the news faster than any other medium.
  • LinkedIn is the number one social media tool for business to business marketing with more than 150 million users. Majority between 26-34, directly followed by 35-44.
The hardest task of all is to know how much is enough and how much is too much on social media. If you are tweeting "how good you are" every other hour, people with tune off and probably unfollow you quick smart. However, if you tweet content with frequency that is relevant to your followers, fans etc, and respond in a timely fashion, without tardiness, then you are more likely to gain loyal followers and fans who remember your brand, what you do and what you can offer them.

Creating meaningful content is key. At Marketing Eye, we find a good mixture of blogs that relate to business, marketing and life, ensure that our followers and fans are engaged and want to communicate with us through our many social media mediums.

Remember: Each business is different. You do not need to be like the business next door to you. You should do what works for you and the people you are engaging with. Don't focus on the numbers. Keep track of how much interaction you are having with people on social media and where they are landing on your website or what type of interaction you are having with them.

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