The world of digital media has rushed up on businesses like a speeding bullet train. As well as many businesses not understanding how to utilise it, the heavy weight corporate companies are now using their financial muscle to hire the best people to develop this new age of communication. It's not just businesses that have been taken aback by the rise in social media. Just recently Saatchi and Saatchi, the biggest marketing company in the noughties, announced the creation of a digital marketing company. They realise the importance of this fast moving new age of marketing and the need to offer this service!
The biggest and most confusing area in digital marketing is social media and the social networks. So why should you be involved with social media. Well, let's look at the bigger picture of how to create a brand. Branding is what differentiates a corporate company from a small company and the number one reason many of the corporate companies such as Nike, Apple and Google etc. spend money on marketing. Creating a brand builds trust; many small and medium businesses do not focus on this part of their business and are usually price driven in value. Let's use the current pound store trend as an example. Soon they became 99p stores, what will be next 97p, then 59p? how about 49p? How long do you think it will be before there is a better Primark?
The point I am trying to make, is if you are a price driven small or medium business with no aspiration to become a brand, sooner or later someone will undercut you and steal your business. Social media is a great way to build brand awareness and communicate your U.S.P (Unique Selling Point). The problem is that its free, so many S.M.E (Small and Medium Enterprises) do not value it. If you haven't yet started using social media, ask yourself why the big brands are now spending millions to ensure they are connecting to their consumers. Do they know something you don't?
So what should you do to make sure you are positioned to take part in this digital age? Firstly think of it as just another form of marketing. It's not so scary then! At the least; you should be on Facebook and Twitter.
Add this to your yearly marketing calendar (Use Hoot suite to print off your stats and analyse them quarterly to see what is working)
If you have staff? Allow them 5 hours a week to manage your social media. (Content is King...Emotional content is golden)
Tracking your statistics is vital, many SME's that I talk to have no idea how many people visit their website and from where. Social media if done correctly will increase this by 10% on average. But if you don't know your website stats you will quickly say social media doesn't work!
Free Social Tools
When you attend a creative web- solutions workshop, you will be shown how to create strategic content for your social media based around your product, using the chart below. It's too much for this article but we would be happy to share this with you at one of our workshops.