Generating Leads Through Social Media: What Businesses Fail to Realize
By Alex Flores
Do you feel that your social media efforts aren’t living up to your expectations? Unfortunately your business is not alone. According, to HubSpot 63% of B2B companies aren’t generating leads through social media. This is a disheartening stat that tells us that more than half of businesses aren’t seeing any return on their time and work that they have put into social media. So how does a business effectively jump on the social media bandwagon and start generating sales? Well, it all has to do with a well thought out and executed plan. Failing to put together a sound social media strategy is the main reason why businesses are not seeing results. Below I have provided 5 key steps that a business must consider when creating or even when improving their social media strategy.
Know where your customers are
In social media your business can produce remarkable content, but if your targeted audience isn’t noticing, then there is no point to your efforts. It brings to mind the quote “If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is around to hear it does it make a sound?” As a social media strategist if you are not willing to put in the much-needed time in finding your customers and researching where they interact, learn, and buy online then it’s not worth it. You can find your potential customers by researching different blogs, looking into LinkedIn groups based on your business and exploring discussions and hash tags on Twitter. A successful social strategy is built upon the premise that you know where your customers interact online.
Understand the strengths and weaknesses of each social media platform
Haphazardly creating different social media accounts for your business and not realizing the pros and cons of each platform is a recipe for failure. Yes, it takes some time and experience to learn some of the nuances that each platform has to offer. For instance sites like Twitter and Facebook are not necessarily ones that will bring in many sales, however they will elevate your brand’s online presence. LinkedIn is a platform that allows you to connect with other professionals. Ultimately, it is a site that will build up and maintain your connections and eventually bring in sales. Lastly, blogger sites not only elevate your brand’s online presence but also the production of this engaging content establishes your business as a thought leader. Knowing the ins and outs of each platform will make the process smoother and more effective.
Another invaluable and crucial asset that must be included in a successful social media strategy is a user-friendly website. A website that is aesthetically pleasing as well as easy to navigate is vital to a company’s online success. You don’t want potential customers to be turned off by your site’s appearance or even be confused about how your site is set up. Once again you can have the greatest content in the world, but if your site isn’t “pretty” or it’s difficult to work, say goodbye to your potential customers. Your potential customers are judging your company based on your website and if a bad impression is formed then you wont see results.
Provide valuable content
Whether it is tweeting, posting or blogging, your content better be valuable and engaging to your targeted audience. This is the real heart of your social media campaign. Without great content your business will fail and will be looked at in an unfavorable light. Hiring someone to manage your social media accounts whether it be an intern or even somebody full time is what a business really needs. A person who will research the industry and produce intellectual and engaging content whether it is through a blog or another medium is imperative for success.
Analyze, analyze and analyze
Lastly, if you are going to put in the effort, it’s essential to measure your work. By tracking your online presence, you can analyze the traffic and the leads you are generating thought your different social media platforms. Which of your efforts are the most successful, which content is brining in the most traffic, how much time are customers staying on your page or even what words are being searched in search engines to find your content are all questions that are answered in web tracking services like Google Analytics. These services make it easy to analyze your efforts and ultimately improve your strategy for the future.
What are your thoughts on generating leads through social media? Any tips out there in managing a successful social media campaign? Join the discussion on Twitter. @bluewavebuzz