Content is so incredibly important in social media marketing. Many marketers and sad to say social media agencies don’t realize the true impact it has on getting to the all important return on investment results that are often missed. Social media content is a crucial part of the “social selling” process as well, so I decided to put together a little infographic on a process we use to show how content starts everything!
Of course every business and industry is different and some of the steps and details will need to be adjusted for your specific brand. The important thing to note is that content drives the social selling process. Content is what starts conversations with your target audience.
There are few important steps I want to point out:
1) Content – Where it all starts. You need to know the topics your audience are interested in, then find and post articles, news and information that is valuable to them. You need to have enough of that content posted throughout the entire day, so that whenever your audience is online, one of your posts is seen.
*the quantity of posts per day varies from social network to social network. For example you would post much more frequently on Twitter than your personal Facebook page. You would post much less frequently to your company Facebook page than your personal Facebook page. Then of course there is LinkedIn, Google Plus etc…
2) Conversations – These are what build relationships. No matter whether you are a BtoB (Business to Business) service company, or a local restaurant, people tend to do business with people they feel they know and like. Since conversations build relationships, this is key to the social selling process. The content you are sharing should be so relevant, interesting and valuable to your audience that they like, comment and/or share it. That opens the door to a thank you and a personal or business question or conversation.
*be sure to focus the bulk of your conversations with those that are prospects for your product and service. Spending time in conversations with a dad in Ohio, when you are a local beauty shop in Texas doesn’t further your sales efforts. That doesn’t mean ignore those that are not prospects, just use common sense and your time wisely.
3) Explain – When a follower asks about you or what you do, you are now in selling mode. This looks very different from one business type to another. Give a short answer and always include a link to your brief video, marketing piece or webpage that you have previously designed for this specific purpose.
Be sure to only do this with someone you know is a prospect for your product/service.
*be prepared with posts that are already written to cover the various questions you might get and edit them specifically for the person you are speaking to at that moment.
4) Next Step – Do you know ahead of time what the next step is or should be in the social selling process? If you are a restaurant, do you have a special to hand off to someone to get them to come in? Does your BtoB service company have a demo procedure you can immediately plug into with the person? Do you schedule time on your calendar for soft invites for “Let’s talk” or “we should talk” options right at that moment?
Know exactly what your options are and what works, then drive down the appropriate path with each relationship as the conversation lends itself.
5) Ongoing – Whether or not the person/company becomes a customer after going through the social selling process, you will always want to go back to monitor and engage. If you have established a relationship and know they are a prospect for you, monitor their activity for opportunities to share their content and/or engage in additional conversation. This goes for those that become customers and those that do not. I can’t stress this enough.
As you review the social selling process inforgraphic and the details I have outlined here, you should be asking yourself a few questions.
- Is the content we are sharing interesting to our audience?
- Are we getting frequent comments, likes and shares from our community every day, all day?
- Is the engagement we are getting from prospects for our product or service?
- Do we know which followers/fans in our community are our prospective customers?
If the answer is no to any of these four questions, your content strategy, topics, frequency and targeting is most likely off and needs considerable adjustment. Additionally, appropriate social CRM solutions should be immediately employed to enable you to better focus time and efforts on the right conversations with the right people.
P.S. – Don’t SPAM! That is all… :-)