Do you have what it takes to stay on task, achieve your objectives, and be consistent in your approach when using online tools to promote your business? Hopefully at this point, almost everyone can agree that Social Media Marketing benefits businesses. With that said, there are still a large number of organizations who are not seeing results from their Social Media Marketing efforts.
There are many reasons why some business owners still are not seeing their Social Media Marketing efforts pay off. One of the main reasons might be that they lack discipline in one or many areas of their Social Media Marketing efforts. You see, Social Media Marketing is ALL about DISCIPLINE. This post dives into the subject of how being disciplined in your Social Media Marketing efforts helps you achieve your Online Marketing goals.
Social Media Marketing takes time. Success doesn’t happen over night. Business owners who jump into Social Media Marketing without a plan lack discipline. Business owners who use online tools that are not relevant to their business lack discipline. Business owners who do not consistently use those online tools to engage their target audience lack discipline. Business owners who spend time discussing topics that are not relevant to their business or to their target audience lack discipline. Business owners who do not take a step back (at least quarterly) to analyze how they are tracking against their performance measures (which should be set within your Online Marketing Plan) lack discipline…and the list goes on. All business owners who act in the ways mentioned above are going to find it hard to achieve success with Social Media Marketing. For Catalyst Marketers, it all comes back to discipline. So let’s discuss how you can ensure that you do not get stuck in the traps above, get disciplined in your Social Media Marketing efforts, and achieve success with Online Marketing.
- Just like a shiny new toy, Social Media Marketing gets business owners excited. Sometimes you just jump right in without a plan. As a business owner, I’m sure you can appreciate the importance of having a solid plan for almost everything you do. A plan allows you to set objectives, figure out ways to achieve those objectives, and set performance measures. Before starting that Facebook business page, or tweeting on Twitter, be sure to take time and build your Online Marketing Plan. This will allow you to stay focused while executing on your plan, as well as, provide you with direction, and allow you to measure your results.
- When creating your Online Marketing Plan, be sure to determine who your target audience is, and then spend some time doing a little research on what online tools they use. Once you determine where your target audience is spending their time online, you can setup profiles on those online tools & begin engaging with your audience. It takes discipline to say, I’m going to use LinkedIn to promote my business or I’m not going to use Facebook. If LinkedIn makes sense for your businesss, then that’s where you need to be. If your target audience isn’t on Facebook, then don’t waste your time on that channel.
- Be focused in your messaging. Inject personality into you content, but DO NOT talk about topics that are not relevant to your business or your audience. Your customers and prospects don’t care that you’re “taking a shower” or “headed to the gym”. Separate your personal messages from your professional messages, BUT AGAIN, be sure to infuse your personality into your messages.
- Set time aside every month or every quarter to analyze your Social Media Marketing against the performance measures you setup in your Online Marketing Plan. You can do this by utilizing reporting tools like Google Analytics, Facebook & foursquare Reports, Feedburner, etc. Tracking your results on a regular basis against how you thought you would perform in certain areas allows you to understand return-on-investment. It also allows you to capitalize on marketing tactics that are working and improve marketing tactics that are not working. With time always lacking in a business owners schedule, it takes discipline to sit down for a few hours every quarter and truly analyze how things are going. Those who do make time for this CRUCIAL activity will see many more benefits than those who do not.
Here at Catalyst Marketers, we know that Social Media Marketing works. Two of our largest clients have been a direct result of using online tools to reach prospects, build relationships with them, and ultimately convert them into customers. The two tools that were of most use to us in attracting those two clients were LinkedIn and Squidoo. We setup our Online Marketing Plan, understood what online tools made sense for our business, used the tools consistently, and ultimately achieved success. You can do the same for your small business. All it takes is a little discipline.