Change those ‘Great Expectations’ of Social Media Marketing to Realistic Expectations.
Small business owners need the marketing they invest time or money in to work. Often times business owners, get seduced by the lure of Social Media, as though it’s the answer to all of their little business prayers.
I always make sure customers have realistic expectations of what Social Media can do for their business. No point driving traffic to a website that needs updating or increasing follower or friend counts unless they are potential customers or can help the business in some way.
When I get an enquiry from a new customer without any particular goal or target market in mind, I work with them to agree a specific goal.
Having a large Social Network can take time to pay off. For example, I’ve been following a blogger who blogs for architects for three years. I’m not an architect, and I don’t specifically provide Virtual Assistant support for architects. Recently, I had a new client wanting to set up a Women Only Workspace. She needed a female architect in London. I contacted this woman, and she gave me a cracking referral for the perfect candidate. When I contacted this architect in my role as a Virtual Assistant, she also was interested in my services.
Over time, a wide and random network can pay off! Although if you are looking for a more immediate ROI, like with any marketing, you need to get really targeted. . .almost stalker like with the leads you want to work with.
- Get on their radar by regularly chiming in on their Social conversations.
- Find common points of interest, build familiarity.
- Call or email them direct to tell ask if they’re interested in your product/service.
You absolutely need to set limits on your Social Media time! If you’re disciplined enough, schedule a small amount of time each day. Turn off all of the email notifications, because email is another beast that eats up your time. If you do want to keep the email notifications, set up an email filter. Make sure they automatically skip your inbox and go into a folder to be read during your daily allocated Social Media time.
Remember, if it was truly as simple to convert Social Media connections into customers as the ‘gurus’ say, the world wouldn’t be in such economic turmoil. Sure, plenty of people are using Facebook, but you have to know what your customers want if you’re going to catch their attention.
This is not meant to be discouraging. It’s just to remind you that if you have work to do on improving your business, do it. If you’re not clear who your ideal customer is, get clear. Then use Social Media to get connected.