As I noted in my last post, the beginning of a new year provides a great opportunity for every company to review, evaluate, and plan needed innovations for the year ahead. Overcome your fears, dive in, and achieve new heights!
The web does indeed change quickly and innovation is constant.
There are changes in Google Search, Facebook always makes changes and other social media tools and new services emerge that catch on and grow rapidly. Due to this, it's soooo important to step back and see where your company is at measured against the current web realities, and plan your needed changes to be current and grow.
Last week I looked at the importance of the mobile user experience on your website, and the need to have a content strategy for your blog. This week, we'll look at social media as an engagement and distribution tool, and how it works to help generate leads for a business.
Giving site visitors a great experience based on their device (mobile, tablet desktop) is critical for any business on the web. As well, providing valuable content that draws people to your website is essential. However, if you provide both and yet people don't know about your site, then it isn't really working is it?
One key to ensure more people get to your site is to participate via social media. I know, not rocket science to most of you, but still it is important to stop and take a look back on HOW and WHERE you are participating.
Social media is where people are spending time online. Businesses should be sure to use the social media channels that are most popular with their audience in order to best intersect with and connect to their audience. Typically Facebook, as the largest social network and most active, is going to be one of those "must-do" networks for a business, but other social platforms should be included as well. If your audience is on Pinterest, your company should be pinning images that link to each blog post!
This means that as you create new content on your site, you are not done until you socially share (and reshare later) an update with a link to the post on your key social sites. This is a key form of "social distribution" that can drive more visitors to your site and help it be discovered by interested persons.
As well, having your brand active on social media by sharing relevant news socially helps you develop an expanding and interested following on each social site. For Twitter, making sure your audience of followers is growing is important. Ways to help this along are by responding to "@ mentions", engaging followers with questions and comments, and participating by retweeting and asking your followers for a "RT" (retweet) of your posts.
Digital Marketing - Part 2.. Don't just DO social, BE social! https://t.co/XbCKozPI5M
— ➡ Mike Gingerich (@mike_gingerich) December 31, 2013
Again, be sure to include the link to your web or blog article when you post a tweet about it, and please note that only posting links to your content is not enough. It's a social network, and businesses must be social! The return on that social investment is more traffic to your site!
In essence, a business needs to review where their clientele spends time on online, be active on those networks and socially distribute new web and blog updates via these social channels as part of their regular online work.
A interesting finding for me was that Pinterest was the second highest source of social media traffic to my website, second only to Facebook. I had spent time creating some boards and pinning images from my blog to Pinterest but Google Analytics showed me that this was indeed a method that was sending serious traffic to my site. I know in the year ahead that I need to be diligent in pinning images from blog posts to Pinterest to capitalize on this interest and traffic source.
Again, not totally new but very important and something that should be evaluated to see if your current....
A business needs to make it easy for visitors who have made it to their site to socially share their content back to multiple social networks. This means incorporating the social buttons of key networks such as the Facebook "Like" button, the "Tweet" button, Pinterest's "Pin It", LinkedIn's "In Share" button, and Google's "+1". These are often implemented one time in programming and then are always available on each new blog post.
It's simply a no-brainer to ensure that visitors can easily share and help spread your blog content to others.
1. Where is my audience spending time on Social Networks?
2. Do I need to increase use of a social network or explore a new one?
3. Do I have a social sharing strategy for my content?
4. Is my business actually being social and engaging in social media?
5. Is my website making it easy for others to connect with me socially and socially share my content?
Social media increases the amplification of your content and website. It's a tool to reach more of your key audience and by bringing them to your site you increase the potential to move them into your lead funnel.
Next week I'll continue with more on the specifics of lead capture technologies and lead nurture campaigns via email that will complete the digital review process.