From time to time, re-evaluating which social media networks work best for your company and re-defining your strategy according to changes in features and functionality, can either leverage your business to new heights or create havoc with your sales cycle.
As a firm believer that "you cannot be everything to everyone", it makes perfect sense to spend time looking at the various analytics relating to social media, the demographics of each platform and how it applies to your target audience, brand authenticity and collaborations with clients and partners.
When it comes to b2b marketing, the decision on what social media networks to use and invest in becomes significantly easier.
Most marketers, let alone small business owners, are struggling to keep abreast of the new developments in technology, buzz words, Google algorithm changes, content trends and more. Why? Innovation has been put on steriods and every technology guru is hoping to become the next Mark Zuckerberg and bank a few billion or at the very least, get their faces on the cover of Forbes.
There is good news though for those who feel the pressure to keep up. Sometimes staying one step behind allows you to better focus on what is important to your business and gives you time to evaluate a particular marketing mediums worth. Always ensure that you sign up for new marketing mediums that mean cementing your brand's name on that platform (otherwise, your competitor will grab it or some smug 14 year old sitting in the attic, laughing all the way to the bank).
Capturing what is best for your small business is often just trial and error.
For instance, is Google + setting your marketing strategy alight? Maybe in the US it is, but in Australia, there are 10 more meaningful mediums to invest time and money into to achieve a better result.
In the US, trends in technology and marketing as a whole, tend to be far more faster on the uptake. There is a reason for this. Americans want everything now, not yesterday and they don't want to be the last cab off the rank.
Instead, they feverishly sign up for new social media platforms that tend to be driven by media and/or their friends uptake of that medium. Word of mouth is very powerful and can alluminate the whole process and if you couple this with "sharing" tools, you may hit a jackpot.
Marketing strategies are an imperative part of any business. Without it, small businesses are setting themselves up to fail. When 1 in 5 businesses fail in the first 5 years, it always comes down to a few reasons and marketing is one of them.
The problem with marketers is that they spend so much time doing their jobs, they forget why they are there in the first place. Keeping abreast of marketing trends is the only way to determine the best strategy to connect with customers. If you look at what seems like old fashion "direct mail" and the power of intergrating social media, emarketing, monitoring tools and advertising - its plain to see how much more effective a campaign can now be.
Marketers who fail to use social media tools that combine all social media platforms to build, engage and measure the impact and results from social media is now a must-have in any marketing department - yet, I took the liberty of ringing 20 people yesterday about what system they use and all of them said "none". Scary when you think of it. Shoutlet is our preferred medium, but there is so many to choose from and most have their individual merits. For the record; Shoutlet allows you to include multiple accounts and provides platform support, social CRM and ecommerce for facebook, email marketing and mobile.
If you are a small business owner and your marketing strategy looks a lot like the one you did 3 years ago, throw it in the bin. Start again. Not only will you save money, you will improve efficiencies and sales results.
Ensure that every marketing strategy centralizes around "content" and how social media in both B2B and B2C environments drives search engine optimization and client engagement.
I know hundreds of companies that have engaged a marketing consultant to write a marketing strategy and then are left miffed as to why it didn't work. Well, it doesn't work if you don't do anything with it! It's as simple as that.
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