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Part 2: How to start with Social media
"Promote your campaign"

October 2010

 

Ok, you have worked out your social media strategy and created an online presence and sit back to reap the profits. Two weeks later you have 5 followers and you start to doubt if your social media campaign was such a good idea.

Like with every other project or when selling a product, your social media campaign does not function if you do not promote it. Even if people are looking for your product or company, the chance is that there are already so many sites out there with similar names or content, that you will not automatically appear in Google. So how do you get people to start paying attention to you?

SEO
The first thing you need to do is good old fashioned Search Engine Optimization. This means whatever your campaign is about, make sure that it has good content which changes frequently. Based on your research (see Social media: the first step) you know what your customers are interested in. Realize a regular update on these subjects and submit those to the large search engines regularly.

The second way to improve your ranking in search engines is by other websites linking to yours. This means other people or organizations are interested in you and thus you are interesting to Google. The more links you can realize towards your site the higher you will rank. There are different ways to get links to your site, like you can negotiate with other organizations to link to each others site, or promote it through a PR campaign. The best way is to engage in blogs that write about your type of product or service. This way you can create a link in every remark you make and show your potential customers that you are highly involved in the subject.

Twitter
Another way to promote your campaign to your customers is to use Twitter. Twitter is an excellent tool to communicate with your customers and shows you what your customers care about. If your followers on Twitter re-tweet you, they will not only spread the word, but also link back to your campaign and thus create more links to improve your search ranking.

A Twitter account will also enable you to stay in contact with your peers, which will keep you up to date of the latest developments in your area, so you can adapt your social media campaign where necessary.

YouTube
Being the second largest search engine in the world, you can hardly ignore YouTube. With its visual aspect YouTube is more attractive than a website with text and people tend to remember visual messages better than written ones. Nowadays the costs for a video are low and often people prefer amateur shots over ones that clearly have been made by a professional organization. The former ones appear more realistic and authentic and are thus easily accepted.

Word of mouth
But no matter what you do to promote your campaign, in the end it all comes down to customer satisfaction: Are you delivering the right service to your customers in your campaign? Are you listening to your customers? Do you react enough to your customers questions and complaints?
If your product or service is good enough and your social media campaign does satisfy your customer with its contents and reactions to their comments, then word of mouth will do the rest and promote your social media campaign for you.
On the other hand, if it doesn’t, social media will kill both your campaign and your product in no time.

Time
No matter what the outcome of the former paragraph will be, be aware your campaign will need a lot of investment (either in your time or in money for third parties) and it will take time to get going. Building up a relevant group of followers/customers with your campaign does not happen overnight and even SEO will need a couple of months to start getting any visible effect. After that you will need to invest an equal amount of work to keep the campaign going. Do realize: Once you started with social media you have to go on.



 

  ARTICLES
Social media

LinkedIn

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

 
  BOOK REVIEWS
Some of my personal remarks and opinion on books related to social media marketing:

"Socialnomics" How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business, by Erik Qualman

 

"New rules of PR & Marketing" How to Use Social Media, Blogs, News Releases, Online Video, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly,
by David Meerman Scott

 
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