There are a lot of misconceptions regarding social networking. A lot of otherwise intelligent online business owners think that they just need to create a lot of profiles and use spam or shady techniques to market on social networks. While such approach could produce results, these are often short-lived. Worst of all, if you play to fast and lose regarding your social network presence, your brand could be harmed. The most damaging part of this is that the harm that you do to your brand name may end up being permanent. You really have to be very careful regarding business-to-consumer marketing messages and advertisements.
You may be simply copying what your competitors are doing, but what if they are doing things the wrong way? You wouldn’t want to follow them down into the ditch, right? That’s precisely what’s happening with all sorts of non-researched, ill-conceived and half-baked social networking social marketing efforts on the Internet. The good news is that you don’t have to do social networking like everybody else to achieve mediocre results.
If those are the kinds of results that you’re looking for, then you can can easily achieve them using standard or over saturated techniques. I’m hoping that you are looking into networking on social media websites because you seek more targeted, focused and ultimately effective form of online marketing.
The good news is that with the correct strategy, online social networking can pay off big. What I mean by this is that you will be able to get a huge amount of results with less effort and money. In short, you can maximize your ROI as well as your ROE.
How does this all work out? Pay attention to the following…
Business-to-business contacts provide the best marketing ROE
In marketing research survey after another, marketing professionals have learned that the cheapest yet highest value form of marketing is to work with people who have already bought whatever it is you’re offering. In short, repeat customers are the cheapest yet most powerful and most lucrative base that your business will ever sell to. You need to keep this in mind because now they like and trust you.
You really shouldn’t in such a way that you’re constantly running after a new business. You will burn through lots of resources, time and effort only to have very little to show for it at the end of the day. The best approach would be to develop a relationship-based marketing strategy where the value of the relationship increases over time instead of decreasing. The best environment to build such a relationship is the business-to-business space.
This is where social networking using online platforms pay off the best. (Even this website Networkrr.com provides some online marketing and advertising platforms.) You don’t have to go to a convention from one end of the United States to the other. You don’t have to jump on a plane just to go to a business meeting or even drive across town to go to some networking luncheon. You can just get in front of your computer, get on a social network and send off messages that can lead to business or cross marketing deals. Regardless of how you measure success or what outcomes you’re running after; social networking online can pay tremendously. With that said, a few reminders are crucial.
Why is ROE important?
On the Internet, there are just so many things you could do to spread your brand and commercial message. I wish I could tell you that all of these are all equally worth doing and that they bring the same types of results to the table. Unfortunately, they don’t because some require quite a bit of energy and then produce minimal results. Others require less energy but produce a significantly better level of results. You have to keep this distinction in mind. You have to always focus on maximizing return on effort.
Of course, there are many economists who define ROE in all sorts of weird and technical ways. For our practical purposes, the definition you should go with, is, how many dollars can I get for every minute I invest in a particular marketing activity? That should be your operating definition for Return-On-Effort. This is a crucial concept to keep in mind because you should use it as a filter for all marketing options you come across. Social networking must survive this filter.
As you probably already know, there are many social networking platforms available online. Accordingly, you can conduct social networking campaigns in a wide variety of ways. You can use LinkedIn, Facebook groups or pages, industry-specific blogs as well as Pinterest pin boards. There is just so many ways you can go. Instagram is one of my favorites and could be how you found this website.
It’s too tempting to think since there’s such a diversity of options out there, that one is just as good as the others. But it’s absolutely wrong. You need to keep ROE front and center. Otherwise, you’re going to end up throwing good money after bad.
With all the above said, why should you conduct social networking online? What is its impact on your business’ brand? Here are just some benefits social networking brings to the table.
Social networking improves brand positioning
It is not enough that you have identified certain values to build your brand around. That is only the initial step of branding. However, you have to also position your brand. This means you to get your brand in front of the right eyeballs.
Now, if you are selling consumer products and services, it’s tempting to think that these eyeballs are necessarily your customers. Absolutely not. In fact, you can sell more by positioning your brand in front of influence leaders that your end-users recognize as experts. That’s the best way to maximize your ROE.
Save money on consumer intelligence
Thanks to mobile phones and tablets, consumer trends mutate almost overnight. You need to keep your calm firmly on the pulse of the ever-changing consumer tastes. With social networking, you can get the inside scoop as to where your target audience is and position your brand where it strikes.
By networking through social platforms, you will get the inside scoop regarding field brands. This is not gloating. This is not celebrating other people’s misfortune. Instead, this is a crucial intelligence gathering because you don’t want to copy their weaknesses and ignore their strengths.
When you hear that a particular company is struggling, this is an invitation for you to look at what they did right and where they fell short. You can then apply the lessons you’ve learned to your business to better position it.
Get top level contacts for marketing
By using social networking online, you will get into contact with people who may have on the connections that you need for ultimate success. Maybe you’re talking about somebody who can get you a distribution deal, or someone who can help you tap into venture capital. Whatever the case may be, getting out there and using LinkedIn, you can maximize brand’s reach as far as venture possibilities, opportunities as well as your particular niche.
Become a more credible player in your niche
I wish I could tell you that the moment you launch a company; people will take you seriously. Unfortunately, that is not the case. People will have to get an impression that your business has paid its dues. People would have to get a clear idea regarding the exact value of what your brand brings to the table.
When you network with other professionals and business owners on social networking platforms, you increase the likelihood of becoming more credible in your niche. How is this possible?
Well, even if you’re a complete newbie, once you befriend the right people, they actually lend their brand’s credibility to yours. The more they talk about your brand, the more they imply that your brand is worth looking out to. The mere fact that they mentioned your brand means that your brand has reached some level of respectability, authoritative value and credibility.
Use this to your advantage. If you get the right people to constantly name-drop your brand, you can pretty much piggyback on those people’s credibility to open more doors for your business.