Internet marketing has taken a sudden shift since the beginning of growth in social media and networking. Every aspect of internet marketing has brought more challenges as the web continues to change very rapidly. Competition is stiffer, and internet marketing itself has become more complex.
Surprisingly, internet marketing is more interesting in theory; the execution is what actually separates the men from the boys.
Lately, there is a lot of contention about the role of social networks in internet marketing and the relevance of previous marketing strategies.
Scott Monty wrote on his blog that,
“The focus on Twitter and Facebook is understandable: they're nearly universal, they're easily accessible via mobile devices, and there's the ability to instantly connect users' thoughts, actions, & comings and goings via those platforms.”
Other thought leaders in the area of internet marketing have been compelled to continue to gather more knowledge and adapt to changing times.
Experts in Search Engine Marketing & Internet Marketing of ClickThrough noted the recommendation of Bradley Little of Nielsen McKingsey Company that,
“Using social media as a marketing channel can be very effective and one of the best ways to understand the impact networking sites such as Facebook can have is by looking to the past.”
Stephan Spencer’s position is that,
“If you are going to get involved with a new technology, don’t just jump head first without taking the time to understand what you are about to get into”
Thus, careful planning and tactical execution of social media strategies is totally unavoidable in order to successfully market your business on today’s world wide web.
To begin on the right foot, here are some very insightful questions posted by Lee Odden in his article, ‘10 Questions for Social Media Measurement Success’.
- What goals do you hope to achieve from a social media marketing effort?
- Are web and social media synced?
- What measures of success (KPIs and Outcomes) will be used?
- Is there a strategic plan for coordinating and measuring social media efforts across the organization?
- What are current measures?
- Where to start?
- What’s the current tactical mix?
- Is a dashboard and social media marketing management tool used for content promotion?
- Moving forward, what will it take to transition from fragmented efforts to something more coordinated?
10. Is there an internal social media council or group tasked with assessing social media strategy, and how will their role affect defining goals and ongoing performance reporting?
Though these questions are directed to well-formed organizations, individuals and small businesses have a lot to learn from them. Until you begin to focus on what exactly you want and how exactly you are trying to achieve it, you may be wasting too many resources.
Moreover, in order not to lose in the end, it makes good sense to ensure you secure and control your fan base, and then turn them into loyal customers.
You should supplement your social media strategies with a strong content driven website to strengthen your relationship with customers while getting more customers at the same time.
She made it clear that you have to,
- Chart a roadmap, focus on your goals, get the right team in place and remain flexible;
- Bring all your fans to your own site to gain control over them;
- Create strong relationship with your fans and;
- Continue to find new segments to enter.
“In our fully connected world, it is no secret that the Web is changing every day. Considering the possible shift away from Facebook, marketers are beginning to spot reasons to work to bring their fans back home. Doing so will give the brand a better chance to initiate a compelling, collaborative—and ultimately trackable—Web experience”
From the above assertions, the golden advice is to have a practicable roadmap for your internet marketing. Hence, you should find a way to integrate all your marketing efforts and secure your visitors one way or another.
Very importantly, ensure your strategy includes a content-driven site to gain control of your fans rather than leave them to their fate in a web space filled with contradicting information, especially on social networks.
Talking about content creation, Adam Singer gave us 6 rules of great content:
- Relevant to reader
- Closes a gap
- Relevant to your company
- Gives proof
However, there are situations where social media may be difficult to use in business promotion.
Adam singer reported a presentation by Kipp Bodnar during the 2010 MIMA Summit. Kipp Bodnar gave instances where social media doesn’t make sense:
- If you have a tiny customer base (perhaps you have only 5 customers).
- If the people you are trying to talk to can’t access the internet. Many people in regulated industries can’t access the outside internet from work. (I.e. some military/electric industry).
- If you or your business don’t have an advocate that can help you.
- Velocity and volume – tough for social media in the beginning. You can potentially create quick velocity but quick volume would be difficult.
- If you have a lack of resources you shouldn’t engage in social media. This seems like a big pain point for organizations. If you lack the time or resources it makes it difficult to be successful.
In the light of these facts, please check your current social media strategy. Ensure you have charted a roadmap and you have an overall objective; and then remain flexible.
Further Reading on Business Marketing
- 9 Tips You Need to Write and Respond to Emails Professionally
- Social Networking Vs Blogging & Email Vs SMS – Struggle For Existence
- How to Upgrade Your Internet Marketing Strategy to Gain Competitive Advantage Using ‘Strategic Positioning’
- Self-Branding: How to Separate Yourself from the Crowd & Build Credibility on the Internet
- How to Maximize Your Email Marketing Strategy in 2011: What is Right & What is Wrong?