As I look through log files for clients and potential clients, I’ve noticed some interesting trends. First, the website traffic of companies without social media programs in their marketing plans generally have fairly random, but flat traffic. And those that include social media planning in their marketing campaigns have increasing traffic with significant spikes around their marketing campaigns.
Some of you may be wondering what a Social Media Strategy is… Well, from my point of view, it’s any way that you can start or add to a conversation with current or future clients. Of course you all know about Twitter, Linked in and blogs (links are to my accounts, btw), but maybe you don’t know how to use them, or aren’t using them enough. Here are some ideas:
Here are 6 ideas to develop a Social Media Strategy:
Find a way to start a conversation
This can mean many things, but basically, it’s a way for you to find out what the world is saying and how you can participate in that conversation. For instance, you could search Google trends for topics that relate to your business. In this example, I’ve used the terms “toys.” From this we can learn several things.
A. People search on the term exponentially higher at the end of the year. (no surprise)
B. Toys are big in the UK. (interesting)
C. The top US city for Toys is Philadelphia. (interesting)
You can also use the Wordtracker tool to learn what people are asking using your keyword, in this case, Toys:
1 where can i get free toys for christmas 590 2 where is the nearest toys r us store 566 3 super why toys 296 4 what are the top ten toys this year 249 5 how to make wooden toys 241 6 how much are my star wars toys worth 127
What does this mean? Well, this is when we get into local search where you can focus your marketing efforts by location, keyword and actual, user questions. For instance, if you’re giving away free toys for Christmas, then you should be answering that question on your website.
Start the conversation with a blog
I’ve found the best, fastest and easiest way to get content out to the world is a blog. Blogs are fairly easy to set up and maintain. You can get free one or get one included with a basic hosting account many places. If you already have a website that works well, than use this as an add-on to your website. Do research and post regularly. My advice is one really good, in depth article per week with several quick-hit articles during the week. (read mine at It’s all About the Conversation)
Get a Twitter account, even if you think it’s silly, it can’t hurt
Twitter may not be for everyone and, unfortunately, it’s getting hurt by spammers and fake accounts, but it is still useful in many ways. And with a recent $100 million in investment money, I expect it will get better. And just because you have a twitter account, doesn’t mean you have to Tweet all the time. Let your blog tweet for you, after all, that’s one of the many things it can do. It will turn your blog entries into tweets so you don’t have to! And, the best part is that all of your Tweets become search engine bait. So, get a Twitter account, start tweeting, search on Twitter trends to find more users similar to yours and then retweet their tweets too. (Follow me here)
Use Facebook more
Of course you have a face book account already as most people do. While I typically keep my business contacts out of Facebook, I’ve found it’s nice to occasionally include what I’m doing in my status updates. And again, this can be done automatically via your blog or twitter account. (If your a friend, friend me here)
Get a LinkedIn account
LinkedIn is the professional version of Facebook and is pretty much business oriented. It’s a great place to list your business services and accomplishments. It can also include your blog via a widget and has a status update that can be managed remotely. It is also very search engine friendly. (If you’re a business contact, find me here)
Email Marketing is still key
Email marketing still remains one of the best way to be in touch with your customers. I know that I haven’t been great at it, but I am better at updating my blog and Twitter account.