We also have to create original content for our website and all these social media networking sites. Different people use different social media sites. Different people need different content in different formats. It’s hard to keep up.
It’s true that marketing has become very complicated. But there is a way to simplify, organize and approach marketing so that it remains straightforward and easy to manage.
The best approach is still to start with a marketing strategy and knowing your target prospects. Know where they are, what they need to know and how they want to get that information. We call these personas. Once you have personas for all your target prospects, the marketing becomes much easier to manage.
Once you know where your prospects are, then you know what social media networks to focus on. For instance, if you sell to consumers directly, Facebook makes a lot of sense. If you sell to businesses, then perhaps LinkedIn would be a place to focus your efforts. If you have younger target market, Twitter could be highly effective to get the word out about your business. If you have a very visual product, then Pinterest might be the right social media marketing platform for your business. Finally, if you’re selling an experience, like a whitewater rafting trip, Instagram would be a good fit. In most cases, it’s not one site, but a combination of social media sites that make up the right social media marketing strategy.
Think about social media sites as the channel, like the channel on your TV. In the old days, when you wanted to advertise, you selected the shows that your target prospects were watching and you placed an advertisement. Today it’s a little different. Your audience is on these sites. Now you have to get their attention.
This is where your content marketing plays a part. You are going to use content to get their attention. You are going to use content to tell your story, to educate your prospects, to get them interested in what you have to say, to take a stand, to be contrarian and to help your prospects make a good decision.
When you create content — make sure it’s about them and not about you. This is common mistake. While your content can speak to your strengths, if you try to sell, or talk about you, you run the risks of sending your prospects away, literally pushing them to your competitors.
Make sure your content is interesting — the more outrageous and the more remarkable your content the more people will read it, share it, visit your website and become leads for your business.
So social media marketing and content marketing are both requirements for successful inbound marketing, but there is one other element that is key to getting this to really take off, and this is also where most marketers, business owners or agencies go wrong. You can’t just publish your content and hope people talk about it. You have to start the conversation, you have to fuel the conversation and the conversation has to be interesting enough for all your friends, followers, connections and viewers to want o participate.
This isn’t easy. This is where you have to take Seth Godin’s advice and be the purple cow. If you aren’t saying something remarkable, showing something remarkable or teaching something remarkable, you are going to be invisible.
Take a look at what your competitors are doing and do the opposite. Stand out. Try something new. Take a stand. Marketing isn’t about fitting in and being safe. It’s about standing out and being different.
To learn more about social media marketing, content marketing and how to get leads from both download this free report, The Ultimate Inbound Marketing Guide.