When my mom first heard about social media she called me and said “I keep hearing about something called Facebook, what kind of ‘book is it?”. Sigh. My technologically inept mother not only knows Facebook now, she has a personal page, a business page (which yes, I helped her create) and has more apps than most 16-year-old girls. The lesson learned here? If my mother can do it, so can you.
For those just getting started in social media marketing, it can be a confusing (virtual) place and you undoubtedly have a ton of questions. In other words: Mom, this one’s for you.
For those with throngs of questions about social media marketing, here are answers to the most commonly asked SMM questions:
What Content Should I Post on my Business Page?
Your business page should be professional, but still fun, and still representative of you and your business. Include as much original content as possible (as opposed to re-posting and ‘sharing’ existing content), but also upbeat and intriguing. It should also be informational, anecdotal and/or newsworthy.
What’s the Difference Between Social Media Marketing (SMM) and Social Media Optimization (SMO)?
SMO is geared towards setting your website and/or blog up to be more social. This can include the Facebook ‘Like’ button, comment boxes, ShareThis-style plugins (a little box on your site that lets users post your content to their various social media profiles), etc. SMM is the act of then promoting that site and content across your company’s social media pages.
How many Social Sites do I Need to use?
There are so many social sites out there, we know. The good news is you can pick just a few. Highly recommended are Facebook (still a huge % of social media marketshare) and LinkedIn (great for hiring, market research, business networking, etc), beyond that you can choose which other networks you want to belong to. It is better to pick only a couple sites and put your effort into those as opposed to spreading yourself too thin across 10 different networks.
Helpful hint: choose a social dashboard to help you out, it will allow you to administer multiple social sites from one handy, easy-to-use platform.
Can I Use Social Media for Link Building?
This is an important question as business owners want to improve their Search Engine Optimization (SEO) with their social media efforts. The more your content is spread on social networks the more likely it is that other website owners will link to it. So yes, promoting your content on social media can help you build your inbound links—as long as it is picked up and repeated on other websites across the internet. However, because of no-follow tags the re-posting and sharing of your content on social networks alone won’t help in link building, it has to be posted off of social networks.
Will Social Traffic Increase my Website Sales?
The ability to turn social sharing into website visits and then into sales is something that’s been plaguing businesses and social media marketing since its invention. It’s tough. F your social media content is shared multiple times across the network, it will increase the number of people going to your website. The only problem is those people are in social mode, not in a business or a ‘buying’ mode. What this means is that you have to focus on creating more conversions on your website to turn these clicks into sales.
Is It Worth It?
If turning social content into website visitors then converting them to sales is so difficult, is it even worth it? Well, it is but it isn’t an overnight miracle. It takes an on-going, concerted effort. And like any other sales methods, it takes time to perfect.
How Do I Know if I’m Doing it Right?
To know how effective you are being you should leverage a social media analytics tool like HootSuite (although there are many others). These are point-and-click tools, so easy-to-use even my mother could use them, that offer powerful tools that analyze your social profiles and pages. They then spit out results about what is doing well and what isn’t. If you want to put a number on how well you are doing you can find out your Klout score. A Klout score is controversial, but a measurable way to see how powerful your social marketing reach is.
How Many ‘Friends’ Do I need?
Quick answer: as many as possible. The more friends you have the more likely your content is to spread and reach larger audiences. Keep in mind though that it isn’t always quantity, a small number of dedicated users can spread content much quicker by creating a buzz of excitement around your content—and can be done better than a thousand users who don’t really care about your page and content.
What is a ‘Niche’ social site?
Niche sites are small sites dedicated to a certain type of content. These can be very valuable if you find one that is in a niche that works well for your business vertical.