Social media is a low to no cost form of promoting your brand. What is most of the time missed out is the ultimate goal? Why do you want to be on Social Media? Is it to get more followers, build your brand or getting people to purchase your services?
A lot of people place adverts in newspapers, bill board charts, television and it does costs money. If you ask them what was your ROI the answer is very vague. It is very difficult to measure ROI with traditional advertising as most people or businesses have no idea how many people read their advert or clicked on their website as it is very difficult to track where the clicks came from whether it was from the television ads or bill boards.
But the problem arises when people get so concerned about the ROI of Social Media. At least with Social Media there are so many ways to track where your traffic is coming from and you will know how to readjust your marketing strategies.
If you know exactly what you are expecting from Social Media then calculating your ROI would be much simpler. As Social Media is a free form of advertising it can be time consuming. That is why it is important to know your goals so then you will know whether the time you are spending on it is worth it or not.
When tracking your Social Media efforts depending on which ever social media platform you choose to use whether its Facebook, Google plus, LinkedIn, Pinterest and so on you have to find out about certain metrics and these are leading indicators and conversion metrics.
Leading indicators as in the case of Facebook are:
- Your total likes/ the number of fans
- Engagement measurements. How many people are talking about it?
- The amount of traffic you are receiving from Facebook
- The number of leads / sales that are being converted into real customers
These tracking rates and figures can be found on Google Analytics and it is free to set up if you have a Google account.
These figures should be tracked consistently. Without tracking you would not know which of the Social Media platforms to focus most of your attention on.
Social Media is a great way of measuring ROI as compared to traditional advertising. However it is an investment that requires time and effort and with consistency it does pay off.
What I found outstanding is the lack of education anytime I visit most large corporations’ websites. There are no educational materials but instead the focus is still on “what we offer, who we are and so on”. The consumer definitely knows who you are, as you have been in existence for over 10 years, 20 years, half a century or over a century. This is not what people or your potential clients want to know about you, they need to be educated before they make their mind up about purchasing your products and services.
Why is there a lack of education? I sometimes ask myself these questions.
The answer is very simple. I believe that corporations should focus on the consumer by simply incorporating a blog and offer valuable content to its clients and potential clients.
It is not easy to maintain a blog and to be consistent no matter the size of your company. The focus should be on the following:
- Having an audience;
Whilst planning these are the things that corporations should be thinking of:
- What is the purpose of the blog?
- What are you hoping to achieve?
- How would this blog benefit the reader?
- What will the content of the blog be?
The current consumer needs to be informed and educated. The focus is to be frequent and consistent. When you make up your mind to blog once every week then it should always be once a week or else it affects your credibility.
Building an Audience:
To build an audience it is important to blog about different issues regarding your products and services. Not only should the blog be in a written format but also incorporating “how to videos, video testimonials and allowing comments”.
You can surprise your audience by getting the CEO of the organisation occasionally to be involved in the blog posts.
The rewards for having a blog are numerous and it has great benefits for any organisation.
Blogs are great for client engagement as they will spread the word and it will definitely lead to sales for the firm.
For more than a decade bankers have fretted about the threat posed to them by the banking arms of supermarkets. The likes of Walmart and Tesco have thousands of outlets that customers visit millions of times a week. Their networks dwarf those of ordinary banks; small wonder the bankers were scared.
Yet now the boot is on the other foot. Banks and other financial institutions are learning to crunch the data they hold on their customers. Instead of being supplanted by supermarkets, banks my sway shoppers.
A leader in this field is Cardlytics, a private American company founded in 2008. It has developed technology to analyse transaction data held by banks and to use this information to sell targeted advertisements to retailers and others. A supermarket might, for example, be interested in customers who spend $100 or more a month at rival grocers but who have not entered its own stores for six months. It might then offer these people a 20% discount on their next shopping trip at its stores.
Cardlytics would insert an advertisement to this effect into these customers’ online-bank statements, ideally under a relevant transaction such a payment to rival retailer. Customers can accept the discount online by clicking a box. This connects the discount coupon to their debit card, so that the discount is automatically rebated to their account when they meet the conditions (by, for instance, shopping at the store within a certain period of time).
The potential revenues are alluring to banks, which are struggling to maintain profitability in the face of low interest rates (which depress their margins) and consumer legislation that has outlawed or reduced many of the fees they are able to charge. Cardlytics, which recently struck an agreement with Bank of America and is now working with 327 banks that reach 78m households in America, says it is able to charge retailers an average advertising fee worth some 10% of the price of the purchase made by the customer, which is then split with the bank. It also claims mouth watering rates of “click through”. Some 15-20% of customers accept offers, of which about one third are actually redeemed. By contrast click-through rates in most other online-advertising media are less than 2%, and in some cases as low as 0.2%.
Other firms are also trying their hand in these areas. Card networks such as Mastercard and Visa have begun mining their data to provide targeted advertisements. So have some banks. Citigroup, for instance, monitors the credit-card transactions of its customers in some Asian countries and uses the information to send text messages offering special deals. A customer buying clothes at around lunchtime, for example, might be offered a discounted meal at a nearby restaurant.
Although these initiative offer financial institutions a way of exploiting the vast troves of data they hold, they also raise the risk of a consumer backlash over privacy. In most cases firms offer customers the opportunity to opt out of such offers. They also promise anonymity: Cardlytics says the banks it works with never reveal the individual identities of any of their customers. Even so, customers may yet balk when pesky ads invade the sanctuary of the bank account.
Source: The Economist, October 27th – November 2nd 2012
What you have to ask yourself is this, why do I need to brand myself online? What is the purpose of it?
These are some of the questions that can come up when you make up your mind to brand yourself online.
It is very simple. The reason why this is important is to show your expertise. There are lots of people providing the same service as you. You are not the only lawyer, designer in your local area. People are going online to search for answers and information before they seek your service.
Being a brand online opens a lot of doors for you.
It is fairly simple to do that. To begin building your brand you first need to have an online presence. Having an online presence is completely free of charge. Go on and create accounts with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and so on. Take it one step at a time.
Find out which Social Media platforms your target audience normally gather. I would also say most people are using almost all the platforms.
The next step is offer valuable information to these people. You have to know what they want.
Send out this information in the form of blogging. Set up a blog or get your web designer to create a blog for you. Start blogging and be consistent. Go online and find out what people want answers to. If you need assistance with that seek the services of a Social Media Consultant who can assist you with your research.
Then start blogging initially it can once every month, or every other month.
You might be thinking what will this earn me. I would not be paid for this. I know you will not be paid for what you are doing. But it helps you in your career. You get to know the latest trends within your industry; opportunities will come your way which can escalate your income.
As an expert the opportunities that come your way include speaking, writing for publications, consulting and so on. This is different from whatever craft you are involved.
These are the benefits of branding online.
Want more information and assistance; schedule a FREE Online Brand Makeover.
To achieve success online, you must be seen as a solution centre.
This is what I mean you must have answers. When viewers visit your site, let them be excited to read your blogs so that they keep coming back.
Anytime they visit your site they feel satisfied as their problems are solved.
Go online visit sites such as quora and answer questions. Come back to your site and blog about them.
This tip will really grow your business.
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One of the most effective ways to grow your business online is using Twitter.
- Analyse your industry experts and see how they use Twitter effectively.
- Build relationships
- Give away valuable information
Your Assignment for this week
If you do not have a Twitter account, open an account it is free.
If already have a Twitter account, apply the above steps.
The question is how can your club attract more members to overcome their fear of public speaking and to enhance their leadership and communication skills?
The 5 Things You Must Do Online:
- Have an updated website. Your club’s website should look different and not the same every year. It should not look like a brochure. But it should have an opt-in form which will capture peoples names and email addresses by offering them something of value. It could be a Special report on “10 Ways to overcome your fear of public speaking in 90 days”. This information is valuable and they will be willing to input their details.
- Have an email marketing campaign. You communicate with those who have signed up to receive your special report every other week about some information on leadership, communication and public speaking. At the end of each email you encourage them to attend your lively events.
- Have a blog within your website. This blog should consists of posts or videos of your lively events. So when anyone lands on your website they can see a glimpse of what happened in previous events. It gives them a taste of what a normal event is about. Now most of your guests don’t know what toastmasters really does. One blog post can be a post/discussion about table topics and people can leave comments as well.
- Having your own YouTube channel. Creating a channel is free and you can put some of your videos on there. So when someone lands on your website they can view some of your videos. Display your website link on each of your videos on this channel encouraging people to come on your club’s website and get your Special Report on the “10 Ways to Become a Confident Public Speaker in less than 90 Days” this could be an example.
- Advertise your events on Meetup. Meet up is a place online where people occasionally go to find events to attend to. So if someone wants to learn about public speaking they would go on meetup and type public speaking. On meetup when people do say they would attend your club, they are then encouraged to share the event they are attending on social media. This also allows more people to find out about your club and attend your event.
Applying the above strategies would definitely lead to a massive growth to your members.
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The use of Social Media has grown exponentially in Africa. The number of African Facebook users has exceeded 17 million. The latest statistics from Opera State of the Mobile Web in 2011 highlights the percentage of Facebook users – South Africa (59%); Nigeria (68%) and Kenya (69%) exceed the United Kingdom (51%) and United States (53%).
This is the main reason why as an African business owner, you must understand that Social Media is the best way to build relationships and interact with your existing and potential clients. Large corporations such as Standard Bank are using Social Media to grow and engage with their customers.
Discover the 4 steps on how Social Media Marketing can help you:
· Improve your brand awareness
· Attract more clients
· Improve your ROI
· Enhance your current marketing strategies
Step # 1: Improve Your Brand Awareness
Even though African brands such as Standard Chartered Bank, Kenyan Airways and so on have huge advertising budgets they are still taking advantage of these free Social Media platforms to engage with their existing and potential customers.
Step # 2: Attract More Clients With Social Media
Social Media is mainly used for relationship building. People want to buy from those they Know, Like and Trust.
Before the formation of Facebook when someone wanted to open a bank account with Standard Chartered bank in Africa they would probably incur transportation costs as the bank might not be where they live.
Now with the help of these Social Networks, someone can be a fan or a follower of the bank without having to travel a long distance.
The customer gets to know more information about the company. The information is not just limited to financial information which is normally reported on the news channels but they get to know the social side which is the human side of the company. The customer is now in a position where they begin to feel that they know the company, they like the company and they can trust the company. Standard Chartered Bank on the other hand can now have easy access to their customers. Their customers are liking and commenting on their Social Media posts.
This is great relationship building. Relationship building is also about sharing valuable information about your products and services before attracting the customer. The company can easily win this customer as the customer would feel that the company is part of them. Even if a competitor is offering a cheaper service the customer would still prefer to stay with the one that offered the best service.
Facebook is a great platform to conduct market research as the information gathered are very current and not out-dated.
Kenya Airways asked their fans on their Facebook fan page in January 2012:
“What is an Online Check In?”
They offered a solution and had 29 likes and 9 comments.
You see how effective this marketing campaign can help your business.
You can see from the above example that Social Networking can be used in many ways to get to know your customer. It also will help you in the creation of your products and services. You get to know what they want before you start producing and in this way it saves you time and money and makes you more money.
Do you see how powerful Social Media can be? When you introduce these same strategies in your business you are definitely going to get more business.
Step # 3: Improve Your ROI
The above companies are doing very well online and have taken advantage of these free platform tools. For your Social Media activity to be successful you have to put some things in place. Or else it becomes a complete waste of time, energy and resources and not bearing any results.
To have maximum Return on Investment in your online activities you must have some strategies in place.
Know why you want to be on social media:
· Is it to improve your brand? or
· sell your products?
Draft a plan and work on its execution.
Develop a system where you are able to measure performance and metrics.
Find out what your competitors are doing online.
The above strategies must be placed under different projects to be effective.
Step # 4: Enhance Your Current Marketing Strategies
Incorporating Social Media into your current marketing activities can be challenging in the beginning. Not all your work force will be in support of this Social Media integration and understand its power and the positive impact that it can have in your business. You must be ready for such oppositions but it is useful, as it gives you the opportunity to educate your team about this. It is your job to find out how many people in your team are using some form of Social Media, how many hours they spend a day and who does not use it at all.
If in doubt you can always hire an Online Marketing Consultant.
You are now aware about the impact of Social Media Marketing and how powerful it is in helping brands in Africa. With over 17m African users on Facebook and still growing, use the above strategies and begin your Social Media Marketing campaign to grow your business and enhance your ROI today.
Do you want to have an impactful Facebook presence?
You can learn from big companies such as Coca cola on their Facebook approach.
In this post I will be sharing with you the 3 ways you can win with Facebook.
#1: Have Clear Goals
Planning and having a strategy is very important. You can begin by having some goals and plan for the future.
Have a Facebook page with some goals in place.
Ask yourself why a Facebook page. What is the purpose? Do I want more customers, do I want to increase traffic to my website or do I want more sales. The clearer you are with your goals the more beneficial Facebook would be to you.
Have a team who would invest time in your Facebook efforts.
#2: Be available
Ensure that your community managers are actively engaging and interacting with your audience all the time
Your managers must be available online daily. Responding to questions posted on the wall. When your fans see this interaction they are motivated to buy from you and recommend their friends to buy from you.
#3: Take action
Your community managers’ job would be to get some feedback and make some improvements. Instant response to feedback is very important to maintain the relationship with your audience.
Do you think you would incorporate the above strategies in your Social Media Approach? Leave your comment in the box below.
The old way of marketing does not work anymore. There has been a panic in corporations as costs have increased and this has affected profits. Some have resorted into cutting the marketing budget. This has led to Increased Job Dissatisfaction, Quality Employees leaving the workplace and still things have not changed. Instead of things changing they have actually become worse as expenses are still rising exponentially affecting the overall company’s turnover.
There is a way out of this and this is through the use of the internet. Digital or Internet Marketing is changing the face of advertising and marketing as a whole especiallywith the rising costs of print advertising such as Yellow Pages, TV and radio ads.
When you pick a Digital Marketing company make sure they can do the following tasks:
Increase website traffic
There should be an increase in the number of visitors on your website. An effective internet marketing company would ensure that the number of visitors to your site increases.
Search engine optimization: Search engine optimization is very important as it helps your website to be ranked high on the search engines such as Google.
An accomplished website: An internet marketing company is to ensure that your website becomes successful with an increase in referrals.
The Company you choose must rank high on certain keyword phrases. If they have not done the work for themselves they would not be able to assist you with your rankings.
Training and Education: The Company you choose must be able to provide SEO training to your marketing managers.
Good Quality Content Writing: Ask the company you choose to provide some good content for your website.
Area of Expertise: Find out what they specialise in.
These are some areas of expertise you should look for:
- Search Engine Marketing and Optimization,
- Social Media Branding,
- Internet Marketing Strategy and Plan,
- Seminars, and
Then look for consultants who have expertise in those areas.
Present Website Ranking: The Company must be able to help you rank high on the organic search engine before investing on paid online advertising.
Focus on the quality of content: Good internet marketing service providers must be able to optimize your website content whiles still maintaining its quality.
Above are some of the qualities you need to look out for in a Digital Marketing company.
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