Category Archives: Social Media ROI

Monitoring Social Media: Is it Worth it?

Launch a campaign with a tracking application to measure your growth. If you don’t have one, you cannot gauge your social reach. It shows what type of posts work best for your brand and helps you think of topics that will get attention.

Use social media monitoring tools (SMM) to find out how your campaigns are doing. Are they attracting enough returns on your published posts? How are people reacting and interacting with your brand online? Are they giving positive feedback or complaining about the ‘lousy’ service they receive? With social media monitoring, you don’t have to manually track each tweet, retweet, reply or mention of your posted articles. If you track each user’s reaction, the amount of cluttered data might overwhelm you.

A social monitoring tool will arrange all the data in one dashboard. Information gathering of every post about your brand is continuous. This aids you in evaluating, gauging and connecting with your audience. Make use of free social media monitoring applications to start tracking customer conversations about your business. This will help you strengthen your social media presence and enable you to connect more with your fans and followers, one at a time.

It’s important you observe how your posts fare as soon as you publish them. Social media monitoring lets you track your competitors’ present strategy and anticipate their future policies; know your prospective sale leads and find ways to improve your business approaches.

Here are some free tools you can use:

1. Social Mention – a social analysis platform that lets page administrators gather data about users’ generated content. It allows web admin to monitor and record what people are currently saying about your company, brand, product or any topic. This analytics application can also track more than 100 social media sites.

2. Wildfire – This software makes it easy for page managers to track leads, handle notifications and campaign promotion progress. User demographics can also be generated, as well as day-to-day page views and comment counters.

3. HootSuite–a social media management system that lets organizations mobilize campaigns across social networks from one dashboard. This free tool also allows you to establish a good relationship with your audience, and schedule updates on profiles.

4. Google Alerts – tracks the web for new content. This application provides the latest Google results on news stories, competitors and industries. It will ask you for keywords and phrases to watch out for, and will send updates on time frames you can set.

5. Boardreader – functions as a search engine to find information from the web’s forums and message boards. This application can search multiple message boards and allow people to share information through global means.

 

References:

Social Mention

Help Wild Fire

Hootsuite

Google Alerts

Boardreader

Socialbrite

Social Media Milestones

“For it [social media] truly to be successful, a concerted effort and commitment to its success is a necessity.”
– Eric Richard, Social Media Expert

Getting into social media is not as easy as A-B-C. You may have free access to tools to create social networking pages, but it takes time, effort and patience to see your campaign through. It is inevitable to make mistakes, especially when you’re planning and preparing your steps for the first time. You might have to scrap different campaigns to get the right formula that works for your business. Many Internet industry experts say that social media is the pathway to successful sales lead generation these days. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to grow and expand your business from its current status. Begin deliberating on what strategies you must take before your competitors gain a foothold on the market.

There are three phases of social media. The first is Launch, second is Management and the third phase is Optimization.

Launch is all about brainstorming about what you should do to enter the world of social media. Which doorway should you choose—Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn or other sites? Take the time to learn about each social network you can use for your business — a social media expert or professional to sit down with you for instance. They explain the basics like setting up accounts, differences between social networks and more. You nod and take down notes. Trying it out for yourself, you discover the potential to extend your reach to a large number of customers. Once again, you consult how you should go about making your own campaigns.

After setting up an account or three in different social networks, you try monitoring the returns on investment. You get disappointed with the low results of your hard work. Don’t lose heart yet! Make it a habit to post high-quality content at least three times a week. Connect with everyone you can get to click ‘Like’ or follow your social pages. Ask family members, friends and happy customers to spread the word about your page. Put up signs in your establishment about your newly built social media pages. Once you get people talking about your business online, you can start interacting with your clientele and followers. Always reply to every comment or tweet. An entrepreneur who responds is an entrepreneur well-liked.

When you’ve gathered a middling number of followers and fans, it’s time to examine your strategy again. Is there something you need to change to gain a larger following? Are you generating enough leads that turn into sales? Is there balance between the amount you’ve invested and what you’re earning right now? If you realize there are improvements to do, action must be immediately taken to turn around the situation for the better. Optimize your page to gain the best possible number of maximum returns on your social media investment. Maybe you need to tweak or rehaul your strategy? Seek advice about your campaigns from social network gurus. Once you’ve managed to develop a more efficient approach, progress and profit will soon follow.

Sometimes you have to lose some before you earn more. If trial-and-error is how you do things, you’d learn more about which social media techniques work best for your business.

 

References:

Mashable

StartUpNation.com

How Valuable is Social Media?

Other than sales, what other benefits can we get if we subscribe to social networking?

For businesses, social media is used to connect to potential customers and persuade them to be part of your client base. It is about letting your target audience know you’re in the business, and you going to meet their needs and satisfaction. Social networks, however, do not end with customer collection and sales. It is also about (1) customer support, (2) brand equity, and (3) market research.

Customer Support

Businesses can use social media to field questions from their customers in a timely manner. Actual customer calls can be problematic due to long waiting period, lack of available customer service representatives and negative experiences that can drive clients away. Responding to customer inquiries on the Internet should cost less and be done in real time. This is a more efficient way of providing solutions to customer concerns and problems.

Using social media, companies can easily reach out to unhappy customers who share their unpleasant experience online. With the presence of customer support on different social network, a company is able to resolve customer issues and perform quick damage control to preserve online reputation.

Increased Brand Equity

According to Investopedia.com, brand equity is about “making them [products] memorable, easily recognizable and superior in quality and reliability.”

Businesses can use social media to undertake mass marketing campaigns to improve the image of your product. Memes and YouTube videos can be used to introduce new merchandise to your target audience. Make the videos catchier so that followers or fans would easily remember them. This can help your campaign to go viral.

Market Research

Social networks are the online hubs where people congregate and exchange thoughts and share content. Getting into these interactive sites gives businesses ideas on how to get the interest of their target audience. Once entrepreneurs are able to study customer habits, they can discover which approach will work best for their marketing goals.

You can also keep a digital eye on how your competitors are faring online. Social media allows them to scout how other businesses succeed or fail in their marketing campaigns. Learn the corresponding customer reactions to your competitors’ marketing strategies using effective social media strategies. Businesses can refine their own advertising plans if they have the right tools and information.

The rising popularity of social networks makes industry leaders more accessible. Keeping up to date with their methods helps business develop their operations further. Be a leader now, use social media effectively.

 

References:

Social Media Today

Investopedia

InBlurbs.com

Clever Content that Captivates

Capture Attention from the Online World with these Fun Content

Posting popular content increases the potential of your page to bemore popular in the Internet. Grab the interest your of your target audience to make them visit your page and click ‘Like.’ Think of creative ways you can use to get attention. Here are some content that can be creatively utilizedto market your business:

1. Memes – These are viral images and videos that can be used to transmit ideas. Humorous memes are the most popular around, because laughter is an international inclination. An example would be the “Call Me Maybe” meme from Adoption Advocate. This meme encourage people to adopt pets rather than buy them from the pet store. Gaining huge popularity practically overnight, this photo-meme generated more than 370,000 in a just a few days.

If used effectively, memes can be popular and shareable content. Once your target audience talks about this meme and posts it on their own profile, their network of friends will see the image. From then on, the campaign will take a life of its own and make people call you for their inquiries. Be careful, though, of copyright that restricts use of some content. Improper use might get you in a lawsuit.

2. YouTube videos –Seventy-two hours of video are uploaded on YouTube every minute. What are the chances your marketing video will be noticed and go viral? You can start in small ways like advertising on your store or social media pages like Twitter and Facebook. If you want to accumulate a large number of views, ask an influencer with a large social pull to post about your video. This can generate curiosity and make the watch count on your video go up, up and away!

3. Infographics–When a complicated topic is explained using a huge block of text, the mind is confused on which part to focus on first. People who are not much inclined to read are turned off and will ignore the text completely. Some would just scan the text and consider themselves well-informed. With the use of images we can avoid this. Pictures can convey different ideas and simplify them in a more comprehensible manner.

The infograph above used a catchy image supported by small blocks of texts that conveys what the images are supposed to  be. Information is better transmitted this way to a larger group of people. This technique is growing more popular than ever because of its effectiveness in delivering ideas.

4. Blogs – Also known as web logs, blogs serve as an archive of entries where the author/owner can talk about their own ideas and opinions on any topic. This avenue is particularly effective for people who want to share what they know or tell a story about something.You can talk about anything, from serious topics like ethical issues or something as mundane like everyday life at work.

Businesses can use blogs to entice readers about products and services being offered. Writers can connect more to their followers this way because of the blog’s informal structure and simple set-up.

These materials can stand alone for your marketing strategy. They will be more efficient, if you use them in conjunction with social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. They will be exposed to a larger number of users and fans, which, in turn, can generate more customer interest and revenue.

 

References:

http://netforbeginners.about.com/od/weirdwebculture/f/What-Is-an-Internet-Meme.htm

http://askacyberlawyer.com/2012/02/23/annoying-facebook-meme-and-copyright/

http://www.youtube.com/t/press_statistics/

http://www.instantshift.com/2011/03/25/what-are-infographics-and-why-are-they-important/

http://www.petesblog.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/social-media-infographic.png

Be More Popular with Facebook

Fascinate Facebook Fans to Earn More Likes

Creating a Facebook page is easy, but making it popular is a pressing problem. More and more businesses are becoming more well-known in Facebook and you might get passed over by customers if you don’t change your strategy. Intrigued about the reasons why customers click ‘Like’ on those company pages you’ve seen? Here are some of the reasons:

 

1. Discounts and promotions are effective in attracting more people to ‘like’ your page. Nothing entices like a good bargain for customers who want to save more on their living expenses. Introduce special deals from your Facebook page like 20% off on certain products anytime of the year.

2. Put up signs in your store saying, “Like us on Facebook and get access to exclusive content.” You can also use your website to drive more visitors to your Facebook page. For example, you’re in the bookstore business. Ask permission from authors to post excerpts of their work on your Facebook page. This would make fans more interested in looking up your page and becoming a member. You can also post special offers available only for Facebook fans to get more traffic.

3. Many people go crazy over freebies. Offer free promotional items like mugs and pens pasted with your logo, business name and message. This would further make you popular, as people will remember your business from the free merchandise you gave away.

4. Providing updates on future products works like a charm in bringing more fans to your page. This would only happen, however, if you’re particularly well-known for the quality of your products. You can post videos showing off the features of your upcoming merchandise. This technique can also work if you’re selling high-end electronic gadgets. Put catchy ads on your page saying, “Products Coming Soon,” especially for highly anticipated items like the latest mobile phone models and more.

5. Sale updates are a highly effective method for spreading the word about your Facebook page. Announce one or three-day sales offering up to 75% discounts in your page. This would make fans inform friends, family and other people about the sale. Others would ‘share’ the link or photo of your sale ad on their wall. Their friends will click it and they’re redirected to your page. Now, isn’t that a good way to promote your page?

6. Make your page a portal for fun and entertainment. Post fun articles that you think your fans will enjoy. Make use of old recipes or share a hilarious picture. This can excite your fan base to check out your page more often so they can amuse themselves.

7. A page that allows fans to interact with each other creates a casual and inviting atmosphere where they can say what’s on their mind. Ask them questions about their favorite product from your store or what products they want you to keep in inventory. Your page is also a good avenue for you to address concerns and complaints. Answering them in a confident and diplomatic manner can further endear you to your fans.

8. Once people become curious about your business, they look for you online. Make your page informative about your goals, products and services and commitment to customer service. A page lacking in information can turn off prospective customers. Beef up your About Us section to enable fans to get to know you better. This would enable them to learn more about your company and make them feel that they’re not dealing with bots.

9. A company that’s concerned with their customers discloses information about their products and services. Keep fans well informed on how your business can benefit their well-being. If you’re overseeing a spa, feature content about the advantages of massage and other services you have. Be sure to include details about appropriate therapies for every type of customer. Educating your clients can also make them feel they can trust and rely on you.

10. A company that regularly updates their Facebook page is a company with regular readers. Post updates on your store’s latest events and projects to make your fans engage more with you. This would further encourage fans to interact with you online or offline.

Once you captivate fans to your business, you’ve almost got it made. Not maintaining contact with them will unravel your relationship-building efforts and make it difficult to connect with them again. Keep your communication lines open to form strong associations with them. This will make them show their support for your company by letting people they know about you. Other users are more likely to ‘like’ a page their own friends recommend.

Any Website Visits Lately? Use Google Analytics to Find Out

 How to Measure the Number of People Visiting Your Website

You’ve spent an enormous amount of time and effort building a website for your business. Content is written, read, edited and reviewed while the post layout undergoes quality control repeatedly. How will you know if your website gets unique visits? Is your online marketing strategy effective in driving traffic to your social media pages or your actual store?

Google Analytics is a free tool that can help you determine if your website is successful in attracting and keeping visitors interested. It can show you how people found your website, what pages they visited and how you can better improve their visit experience. This freebie from Google uses Internet ‘cookies’ to gather information about users’ site visits.

What questions are answered when you use Google Analytics?

  • Did your website have any new visitors? Did previous visitors come again?
  • Are there visitor trends you need to watch out?
  • How long do users stay on your website? What pages do they frequent?
  • What’s the physical location of your visitors? How about their browser? How fast is their Internet connection?
  • How did they find your website? Were your SEO campaigns and keywords effective enough?

When using Google Analytics for the first time, you need a Google account to access your website data. Once you’ve created your account, visit http://www.google.com/analytics. Website details will be taken to help with report production. You’ll be given a tracking code, which you’ll have to paste on your pages. This tracking code will help Google Analytics keep watch over your website.

Once your account is set up, you’ll be able to study the data generated and learn how your social marketing strategy fares. But first, you have to set up “Goals,” which you can use to compare your conversion rates. These rates will help you learn whether your website is helping you succeed in reaching your marketing goals. Example goals are: gathering subscriptions for newsletters, estimate or quote requests, Contact Us queries and online purchase transactions.

If you have a high conversion rate, then your website is efficient in getting your visitors behave as you want them to. Assisted social conversion is the number of conversions a social network contributed to your website. A scenario becomes an “assist” when a user visits your site, leaves without converting then comes back to convert in the following visits. Last interaction conversion means when users visit your site and ‘converts.’ This is counted as ‘last clicks’ since the users meet the goal.

What do those circles in the Social Value page mean? According to Christopher Penn’s interpretation of the social reports, these circles denote whether your website and social media pages are:

Balanced –Your website and social media pages are synchronized. They work well together in helping your reach your marketing goals.

Socially Broke – Either your social media pages or website is not meeting your business goals. You need to redo your page and optimize it further to start reaping more benefits.

Over-Reliant Social –Your social media projects drive a high rate of customer traffic to your website. There is a danger in this, however, because once the social media site shuts down or you get banned, it will difficult to recoup such traffic again.

Chatty – Your social media efforts are effective, yet your website fails to get enough conversions.

The I in Team: Your social media campaigns are not efficient enough in driving customer traffic.

Analyzing website traffic will benefit you in the end. If you neglect this particular feature, you are losing out on ways you can further improve your marketing efforts. With the use of Google Analytics, you can drive more visitors to your website and to your store.

References:

http://www.heatherfloyd.com/post/Counting-Hits-Visitors-and-Page-Views-e28093-What-Does-it-All-Mean.aspx

http://www.zoommetrix.com/google-analytics/kpis-you-must-know-in-google-analytics-and-meanings/

http://online-behavior.com/analytics/googleplus

http://www.christopherspenn.com/2012/04/how-to-measure-if-social-media-marketing-is-working-for-you/

Taking the Ruler Out on Profit

How Marketers Measure the Return on Social Media Investment

The infographic entitled “Facebook and Twitter ROI” says:

  • 73% of CEOs think marketers lack business credibility and are not the business growth generators they should be; and,
  • 77% of CEOs think marketers don’t talk about what really matters in business: SALES.

The first assertion is, in my opinion, untrue and denotes lack of knowledge about a marketer’s responsibilities. A marketer’s primary duties are (1) to find out what goods and services consumers want, and (2) to promote that a particular business will have the answer to the general population’s needs. The bottom line, then, is that marketers are concerned about the growth of a business. Without marketing professionals to study the product qualities people are looking for, a business would lose against its competitors and close down.

Sales is not the main concern of marketers; it is their end goal. A sale will not happen if customers fail to see how a business’s commodity is useful for their purposes. Marketers effective in their work know how to connect with customers. They study how to properly persuade people to buy a product or service without alienating them with over-promotion.  This would, of course, make marketers talk more about how and why customer so-and-so liked Item X and not Item Y.

As we can see from the graph above, marketers first pay attention to getting a large number of Twitter followers and/or Facebook fans. Having a large following or fan base is beneficial to spreading the word on a business’s products and services. Once you release news about your latest offering, these people can act as your mouthpieces. They will quickly announce about the upcoming goods you may soon provide. They will call their family, friends, and acquaintances and bring them to see how your new products will come up to scratch.

Website traffic will soon follow a Facebook or Twitter page if it has enough content to engage attention and interest. A fully functioning website should be aesthetically appealing with short and informative content to entice fans and followers to call your place of business. The website should also have at least five to seven pictures that collectively show off a good business image. This would help customers remember your business better and encourage them to either call or visit your shop to look around.

How do you get your followers and fans talking and generating social mentions? According to Alicia Ranch-Traille, what you can do are:

  • Put up a Q&A tab where your customers or would-be customers can ask about their concerns and get timely, detailed, and easy-to-understand replies.
  • Respond back to tweets, messages, and wall posts. If you don’t answer back, customers will think you an uncaring entrepreneur and lose interest in doing business with you.
  • Encourage positive video feedback about your products. YouTube is populated with videos about product reviews. Offer freebies for customers with satisfactory experience with your commodities.
  • Create online forums where you can connect more with your customers and other people interested about your products. Aside from building strong relationships, this technique may establish a firm online presence for you too.
  • Have a page on Facebook? Put up some pictures of your products and persuade customers to leave comments about them. Acknowledge raves and address rants equally to ensure a professional business image.
  • Enter your business in Google Places. Put your business on the map and ask satisfied customers to leave reviews on your business listing. This would pull up your rankings and help you foster a positive reputation.
  • Quizzes, contests, and scavenger hunts can get people talking about your products as well as your website. These activities generate more talk and draw additional attention to your business.

Social mentions trigger lead generation that can help turn people passing by your store’s physical location and web pages into customers. The more popular you are, the more chances you have in getting almost every member of the community to come to your store and be customers for life.

So, come one, come all. Try making a business page on Facebook and Twitter. Still not convinced it will be a good investment? Here’s proof:

How about that? Think of the possibilities of reaping such bountiful rewards like Jimmy Choo, Edible Arrangements, and other businesses experiencing success in social marketing!

References:

http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/marketer.html

http://socialmediatoday.com/aliciaranchtraille/565139/10-ways-get-your-customers-talking