Have you got a social plan?
It’s a fast-moving social media landscape out there and when you are in a service industry that’s reliant on both sourcing new business, and retaining existing clients, you’ll be wanting to put a social media plan in place to remain relevant and responsive.
Perhaps you feel it’s enough for your business to simply have a website, and, if this is the case, then make sure it’s a great website reflective of the quality of your business offering and clearly promoting that business as being reliable, credible and responsive.
However, ask yourself – is your business’s target market using social media?
If you answered “yes”, then your business should be, too and it should be an additional string to your marketing bow.
There is a huge opportunity for you to tap into new audiences and latent potential future clients.
Will you use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Google +, LinkedIn – or a combination?
Figures released by Facebook and Instagram claim that globally, more than two billion people use Facebook and over 700 million use Instagram every month, with 60% of people on Instagram saying they discover new products and services on the platform.
Having a social media platform – or multiple platforms – for your business will:
• Increase brand awareness and provide opportunity for your followers to share your information with their followers – word-of-mouth to the nth degree
• Allow you to connect directly with your target market on a two-way playing field
• Humanise and personalise your business by using the language and content that best reflects your operation
• Allow you to share business information quickly and widely
• Give you immediate feedback
• Increase the connection you have with existing clients
• Allow you to cross-pollinate material from your website (and business blog, if you have one)
• Create an easy link into your corporate website
Essentially, you’ll need to establish:
• What are the social media options that mesh best with your business
• What do you want to get out of a social media plan – more referrals, more leads, increased website traffic, promotion tool for new services, bragging rights, industry thought-leadership
• Are your goals do-able, measurable and flexible – in other words, relevant, actionable and achievable
• How much money do you want to allocate to this part of your business marketing plan
• How will you put the plan into action and who will be responsible for rolling it out, updating, monitoring and responding to feedback – will this be done in-house, or outsourced.
Sure, it’s called “social” media – but you will have goals beyond sociability. It’s not just about “likes”, thumbs up and emojis. You’ll need to have ways of tracking feedback and determining exactly how much new business your social media presence is generating.
There are numerous analytics tools out there and you’ll need to ensure that you know exactly what markers you are looking at when interpreting data.
And, just as good news travels fast with social media – so, too, does negativity. So your plan will need to include a damage-control strategy.
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