Magic. Magic awes us. Magic deceives us. Marketing tools are awesome. But they don’t do the work for you. If you want effective marketing for your business, pay less attention to magic tricks and more on the work.
Do the Work
I used to say there is no dream without the work. It’s true.
So often our work has long term results. It’s no different with strategy. To craft a strategy and then wait for results takes faith — faith in the process, faith in the forecasting, faith in the tactics.
What does the work look like? Well, that depends upon your goals and budget, of course, but here’s a list off the top of my head.
- Follow accounts that align with brand goals.
- Share content from brand’s strategic partners.
- Share content that aligns with brand goals.
- Curate guest bloggers.
- Write posts that engage the audience.
- Interact with said audience (this means on blog comments, social media shares, etc.)
- Be on the lookout for trends that will affect brand.
- Advise clients based upon trends, industry news.
- Interact with brand in their preferred form of communication (email, Slack, etc.)
- Create and manage content calendar.
- Check for replies and engagement during waking hours (6am – 10pm).
- Be available for consultation on integrating social with whole marketing and product plan.
Mimicking Social with Automation
We love to hate Big Brother, data mining, and lack of privacy but in marketing we like to buy tools that simulate social interaction.
Building a business outside of your first circle (your friends) requires blogging then a push to social (content marketing) plus engagement on those profiles (relationship marketing). There is no way you can do this with only tools.
You wouldn’t buy a hammer and think you could build your own house.
Why wouldn’t you also hire a professional to build your brand?
Good marketing is more than tools you can buy.
When you work with a professional social media manager, you get boots-on-the-ground insight that helps shape and modify your marketing plan to meet your business goals.
You’re not getting automation.
Sure tools can do things like help get impressions.
Having impressions isn’t the goal of social media. A brand can have a lot of impressions for the wrong reasons (broken code, offensive tweet, etc.).
The goal of social media is to engage an audience and gain or maintain affinity.
So you have in-house people to implement a strategy. Great. Do they know which tactics will be most effective? Aside from posting, how will they do with replies?
A person can implement a tactic but without understanding the why of the overall strategy, it is easy for the implementer to go astray. Blindly following trends, being distracted by the Kardashians of the Internet, and inside jokes are just some of the ways social can go wrong — quickly.
The Brand’s voice must be protected in every social post. This means that the implementer must think out the effects (both good and bad) of any action before it is done. On social media, this thought process lasts seconds, if not minutes. Thoughtful engagement and relationship building is key to building a successful brand — that builds a business — in the long term.
This is why it is important that a brand contracts with a professional social media manager or trains thier in-house staff.
Marketing is a Business Expense
Regardless of how you choose to market your business, it is a use of resources and, therefore, an expense. To grow your business beyond the near future, you will need to decide how best to use those resources — outsourcing a marketing professional or training in-house staff.
A necessary evil? Maybe. It depends upon if you want to grow your business.
I’ve been managing social media for businesses for over ten years and watched them grow. Is yours next?