Following NAPCO Media’s recent incredibly successful webinar, “Using Social Media to Generate Sales Effectively,” host Karen DeWolfe sat down to answer many of the great questions that she received and to provide some bright ideas to help everyone effectively sell on social media.
Q: What is a blab?
A: Blab.im is a great social site that is all about video chatting, collaboration, and watching and learning about various topics. I host a few a week so feel free to go to blab.im, look me up and subscribe to check it out!
Q: What about Google+? Should we be posting? I know it is not widely used, but does it help with SEO?
A: Yes, anything with Google is going to help your SEO; however, Google+ is not as relevant as Google had hoped it would be. You are better off using other channels and driving them to your website, posting blogs, and using YouTube, as YouTube is the number two search engine. It is not as essential to SEO as Google would like you to think. There are many other organic ways to get the results you want without posting to a place very few people frequent.
Q: When you use YouTube or other social media platforms, aren’t you allowing your competitors to see where and what you are doing, and in turn letting them react?
A: Honestly, we don’t see any issue with competition seeing what we do, and you shouldn’t either. The world is an open place these days. You can find anything you want to find. Your business exists on many other merits and values, and therefore your competition cannot replicate just from seeing your social media posts.
Q: Working in an industry like lifting beams, what is the best strategy to start the conversation? Our content isn’t cutting it.
A: Make your content cut through the clutter! You don’t necessarily want to post content about a lifting beam. You want to post content about what it helped to create. What is more compelling, a picture of the finished Hoover Dam or a picture of the equipment used to create it? Think value and end result.
Q: What do you suggest to reach more of our fans without paying an arm and a leg with the new Facebook algorithm?
A: The best advice we can give you here is to conduct campaigns that are going to drive your fans to the page to essentially “opt in.” Facebook is one of the best in the business as being truly “pull marketing,” where the user is empowered to control what they see and what they don’t. You want to do incentive campaigns to get your fans to click the links to see your content. I think Facebook will see people utilizing other networks more for advertising because this will dramatically change the size of an audience.
Q: What’s your view on buffer?
A: Any tool that you use to help you manage social media is better than not having one at all. Buffer is an easy-to-use tool. It does not have as many analytics as others and it is not as feature-rich, but it will help you make sure your publishing is getting done!
Q: I am sharing useful info, but I’m still not getting many leads or followers. What’s the problem?
A: Try looking for and following the people you want to see your content. Chances are, they will follow you back. You don’t have to follow a large amount. Also, it will help you if your tweets go back to a page on your website (such as a blog post), and not always linking out to someone else’s. You are boosting someone else’s SEO, not your own!
Q: Do you think we should prepare a calendar for scheduling posts as well?
A: Yes. Your strategic plan will help you decide when to post. Each network has timing strategies you want to pay attention to. Remember what we said, Twitter moves fast, so you need to post more frequently. Also, think of times people will “thumb through” social media, such as in the morning before work, in addition to during work hours.
Q: When you gave the case study on the insurance company, exactly how did the insurance company find people that were dissatisfied with their current provider?
A: They did a search for negative sentiment on competitors. They also created monitors for people who were using words that indicated they were in the market for a new provider. Lastly, they created monitors for people who posted about life events: Got married, bought a house, etc. All things that indicate a new insurance need!
Q: Does AwarenessHub keep track of each tweet’s engagement?
A: Yes, it absolutely does!
Q: How would you go about marketing on social media if you don’t sell to any end users?
A: Given the size of the social network communities and the varying types, it would be very difficult for you to not reach someone you are looking to market to in some capacity. It is a matter of looking at your strategic plan and identifying who you are trying to market to and finding where they “hang out” on social.
Q: What are your thoughts on using Pinterest?
A: Pinterest is a great place if you have a business that would benefit from the visual exposure, especially retail. We have seen many different types of companies and organizations have success with Pinterest.
Q: I am in the print business in Jamaica. They didn’t use social media before I came there. I have begun by using Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn; however, how can I harness it better?
A: I am hoping you learned some things on our webinar about how to harness it better! I will tell you that you need to start with a plan. Building your social presence doesn’t happen overnight. It is a living process that takes time and follow through. I would be happy to talk with you personally about some things you can do to get you going. We can also help you create a plan if you are interested!
Q: How can you find the best content for your audience in one place?
A: It isn’t usually one place that you are getting content from. It should be a mix of content you create on your own and content you aggregate from relevant places. You want to shake it up and have content from different voices and different outlets. It is what keeps things interesting and new.
Q: How do you get your target market to “like” you on Facebook? My “likes” are more friends and networking contacts than members of my target audience.
A: What kinds of things are you posting on Facebook? Do you do any marketing campaigns where the call to action is a Facebook “like?” Often times as in any other marketing practice, you need an offer or incentive and you need to drive the activity.
Q: How do you know if a lead came from social media, or what influence social media had in moving that customer through the funnel?
A: We have software that can track it, but we are also engaged immediately in the social interaction so we know where it originated. If you use a social media management tool, you can see what drove the initial conversation.
Q: I have been paying a company for almost a year to manage my social media, and I have not had single sale from their efforts. They tell me that social media is not for sales, it’s really for getting our brand name out there.
A: I feel a bit bad saying this, but I completely disagree with what they are telling you. We have a product at our company called QReateandTrack.com. It is all about tracking and measuring QR Codes. We ONLY sold through social media, no sales reps, it was truly just social posts. We have over 600 customers on it, many Fortune 500s. If you are doing social media and content marketing correctly, it would be almost unheard of to not generate a single inquiry or lead. I am happy to talk with you and give you some advice.
Q: Is social media helpful for SEO too, or only for online reputation?
A: Social media is not only helpful, but essential for all of it! Because your social media sites are updated more often than your website, they often come up ahead of your website so it’s incredibly important for SEO.
Thank you, Karen! What a great Q&A.