William S. Woodside and David J. Reibstein (Professors of Marketing at The Wharton School) boldly claimed that “If an ad doesn’t increase brand awareness, it’s not doing its job”. Any CEO, marketing executive, and business owner knows very well that marketing is the integral part of any organization/business set-up. Without it, there is no business.
Ridiculously, in times of economic difficulties, the marketing budget is normally among the first culprits of cost-cutting strategies. In other words, if your marketing budget is not bringing in the returns, its importance will diminish. With the social media here with us, marketers are utilizing the social media platform to drive up their brand awareness, and advertising. Trust me, businesses spend lots of dollars in social marketing. But how do you ensure that each dollar spent in social media marketing plays a part in bringing in customers or create brand awareness?
Here are 7 ways to increase your social ROI:
- Make it a Team Effort
It is tempting to imagine that advertising on social media is a piece of cake. Behind every Facebook like; every YouTube view; every twitter follower, there is an effort or cash expended. This can’t be done by one person, nor can you depend on your ads alone to do the job, you must ensure that every person in the organization is contributing towards the campaign. A survey conducted by openforum.com shows that about 53% of people engage in social media marketing campaign alone. If you are a small business owner, make sure that your employee, suppliers, distributers (and family members if possible) are contributing.
- Be Authentic
This is what Sid Shuman, who runs social media for Sony PlayStation had to say “You can’t fake it online; they can smell that a mile away.” You can’t hide behind your monitor and run a marketing campaign you don’t believe in. you might dismiss this as a ‘pastor’s sermon in church’ but is the truth simply because it has been tried and tested. Before you spend your cash in social media campaign, you’ve got to be part of it; you’ve got to believe in what it is you are selling to them. Only by doing so will you be able to answer your fans’ questions and engage with them.
- Put Your House in Order
Make sure your social profiles are in shape. Make sure they look professional and attractive. Your social profile is your social shop-front. Don’t expect customers to jump through muck just to come and listen to you. Also, make consistent list of the tasks you’d like to accomplish on a periodic basis. For instance, you can draft a list of twitter updates to send every 6 hours, each day. You can re-tweet interesting updates, share interesting photos, or descent jokes. Sometimes, it doesn’t have to a serious stuff.
- Target. Target. Target
Your time is very precious. Your followers/fans’ time is precious too. Don’t waste any of it by engaging in nihilities. There is no way you are going to realize a ROI in your social marketing activities if the message is not reaching the targeted people at the right time and place. Poor advertisement strategy is like a boy winking to a girl in the darkness.
Don’t just listen to the audience, engage with them. Treat their feedback seriously and let them know that their views are being integrated in the process. Organizations can use social media tools to improve their services and products. In fact, social media is now an important too in brand development. It starts with listening to the customers’ complains/complements/suggestion through intelligence gathering, analyzing the information, implementing where necessary and appreciating them for the contribution.
- Identify influencers
Social media is about trust; whether you are talking about casual chat or business marketing. Invest in research that will determine what customers appreciate and trust. You’ll reap better fruits if your produce a product that your customers have endorsed. It is important to pay heed to what the customers are saying, what their fears are, what makes them happy, what annoys them, and so on. Your team of marketers need to extremely alert to changes in market trends and customer psychology. Rather than being reactive, being proactive is the safest road to success.
- Know Your Budget
If you don’t know your budget, how else will you be effective in what you do? Knowing your budget will enable you to plan, improvise, cut unnecessary expenses, and concentrate only on useful activities. If you don’t know your budget, you might find yourself spending a lot of money and time on non-essential things at the expense of the essential ones. You will also be in a better position to know whether your social media activities are producing the right rate on investment.
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