By: Susan Friesen|
Since I just started the 14-Day Facebook Marketing Challenge yesterday (it’s not too late to join us!), I have Social Media on the brain.
I’ve been thinking about one of the biggest reasons why businesses and entrepreneurs take the time to be on social media. Aside from showing off their cute pets or grandbabies, it’s to help grow their business.
When wanting to grow our business, we often think of the more tradition methods of marketing and advertising. As an example, typical advertising channels are newspaper, radio and TV ads. Where typical marketing includes SEO, PR, and Direct Mail campaigns to name a few.
But when we look to social media to help with this, the approach needs to be different than those more traditional methods of getting qualified business leads.
And that approach is through a method called “inbound, pull or relationship marketing”.
Pull and relationship marketing relies on developing relationships with prospects before doing any overt promotion. The premise being people, especially women, tend to do business with others who they already know, like and trust.
In fact, according to Nielsen, 83% of consumers will trust the recommendations of family and friends so it’s our goal as business owners to gain that trust.
So how does one go about gaining trust and generating qualified leads from social media?
Here’s 13 best ways to attracting qualified leads to your business:
1. Establish yourself as being knowledgeable in your industry. Do this through your blog, newsletter, and the types of posts you add to your social media accounts.
This authority will build trust with your followers as they learn more and more about what you do, and your expertise in that field.
2. Pick the best channels for you to get visible on and focus just on those. Don’t try to spread yourself too thin by being everywhere.
Instead of chasing after the social media channels that are getting a lot of attention, ask yourself this important question: “Where is my target audience hanging out?”
Then go build your brand presence there.
3. Be on social media with the intent of being helpful, not on pushing your wares. People smell desperation a mile away and it’s a turn-off to most.
Instead of always trying to “push” your products or services on others, “pull” them in by being engaged with them. Comment, like and share their posts. Answer questions that are genuinely helpful.
Developing trusting relationships will give you greater returns in the long run than doing nothing but promoting yourself.
4. Provide exclusive offers just for your loyal followers. In between posting informative posts, sprinkle in special offers, discount codes, contests or giveaways that are exclusive to your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram followers.
Shortstack offers an easy way to hold Instagram, Facebook and Twitter contests that will also help you stay within those platform’s rules.
5. Ask for a referral after someone has made a purchase. When an online purchase is made, the purchaser is sent to a “thank you” landing page. Use that page to offer some sort of incentive to share what they bought with their social media followers.
6. Host a Twitter Chat or Facebook Live show. This is a great opportunity to get in front of your followers and showcase your expertise.
Use the show to have a question and answer session, share a valuable tip, strategy or perhaps some inspiration. Use your imagination and think about what your followers would want from you.
7. Incorporate a paid ads campaign. Despite what we tend to think, social media is not really a free platform for business.
In order to get the exposure you need to generate solid leads, you need to look at it from a “pay to play” perspective. Invest in Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn ads, depending on where your ideal clients are hanging out the most.
It wouldn’t hurt to supplement your efforts with Google ads too. Google ads can be extremely effective at driving qualified traffic back to your website.
8. Create a custom tab on Facebook for your free giveaway. Facebook users don’t like leaving that platform so one way to get people to sign up for your free giveaway is to host a custom tab within your Facebook page that provides the signup ability. Here is ours as an example.
Pagemodo offers a means to do this or you can use Static HTML as well.
9. Add your list of services to your Facebook page. Facebook recently implemented a new feature on the business page that provides an opportunity to showcase your services. Take advantage of this great feature so your followers know what it is you offer!
Here’s ours as an example.
10. Use Twitter cards. Twitter cards are a great lead generator that has a call to action embedded right in the tweet.
Once the visually eye-catching and compelling tweet is created, pin it as a feature tweet to the top of your page. This is prime real estate that twitter followers will see when checking you out.
You can view our Twitter card here.
11. Use video. Video is where it’s at on the social media scene so take full advantage of the excellent exposure it can bring your business.
You can use video on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and of course YouTube to demonstrate how to use your product, share informative tips and strategies, offer inspiration and words of wisdom to name a few ideas.
12. Add a call to action to your Facebook page. Your Facebook business page has a great feature located right under your header banner that allows you to add in a call to action.
Ask yourself what you want your followers to do once they have discovered your page? You can choose from several options such as booking a service, getting in touch, learning more, making a purchase or donation or downloading an app or game.
13. Get engaged with your followers. One of the fundamental strategies you can incorporate into your social media efforts is to get involved and engaged with other people and pages posts.
A great way to get more exposure to your page is to like, comment and share other page posts as your page. Find other pages that share the same target market as you and like those pages as your page (as opposed to your personal profile) and make a daily habit of interacting with those posts.
The more you get engaged with your followers, the more they will be aware of who you are, which will begin to develop the know, like and trust factor with them. The more that happens, the more apt they will be to go check you out and if they need what you’re offering, they will then become a lead for your business.
As you can see, there are lots of ways to take advantage of social media’s powerful lead generation possibilities. The key is to be consistent, be strategic and be patient with you efforts.
Susan Friesen is the founder of eVision Media, a boutique web development and Digital Marketing firm of over 15 years that specializes in designing, building and marketing professional, unique websites for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations.
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