A holistic and realistic perspective on the role social media marketing can play at your business.
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Welcome to another edition of social business Unplugged. Practical advice on how to leverage social media for your business. Now the host of Social Business Unplugged, author of the forthcoming book Maximize Your Social, published by Wiley and founder of Windmill Networking Meal Schaefer. Greens Everybody, this is Neil Schaefer and welcome to another episode of Social business unplugged. I hope you're enjoying this podcast from whoever you are listening in the world. I am actually my home office because yesterday, believe it or not, I had arthroscopic surgery on my right knee from a Tauron meniscus. Not too gross, any of you out, but everyone in social media, you see us tweeting and blogging. What have you? We are real people who get injured as well. So today I am in recovery mode. Day before my surgery, I had a chance to talk to, actually a friend of my wife's friend, who is very, very new to social media, and he asked the question that I think comes up a lot and some of you that are listening this podcast are probably in the business of consulting or social media agency yourself, and some of you are really trying to figure out either how to get started or how to take your social media to the next level. So I'm hoping the advice that I gave this person will serve you all equally well. This person actually runs an import export business, importing organic foods or organic ingredients from overseas, and he has been successful just launched the company about a year and 1/2 ago. He was successful in the import and seven of these products to a certain chain of stores that specialize in Asian organic foods. Here in Southern California. They actually operate throughout the Western United States, and now he wants to go from tackling the ethnic market, too. The whole foods, the sprouts, all these general supermarkets that specialize in organic or maybe high end foods like Bristol Farms. So the question that becomes, what can social media do for me? Now you have to remember, I meet a lot of startups, and I suppose this business has only been around for years, so I guess you can consider this startup. And some startups never put much in the marketing, but because of relationships or because of just knocking on doors like this gentleman did, he was able to successfully launch his business and now extended by offering new product lines. So the question really becomes. And I ask this of all my clients and you need to ask yourself is, Well, how did you go about getting leads before social media? So can Social Media First will help in that process. And obviously, if you're doing B to B sales, social media, we all know could be a great help starting but linked in to try to find decision makers and then by sharing and creating your own content to tryto influence them and is creating sort of icebreakers to start conversations with. And it also gives you a little bit of Google juice as well, so that others online may find out more about you and your company. But if we're trying to go from a B to B perspective to a B to C perspective, we're trying to attack these new markets, and you know, there's like a push pull approach, right. You have the approach where you're trying to connect with the whole foods or the sprouts or whatever wild oats or whatever supermarket it. Maybe, and there are many many ways of doing that. There's also many, many ways of driving consumer demand. Now, the site that the gentleman is building also has an e commerce aspect to it. So he is starting that b to C. And once you start having e commerce, you're now selling directly to people. And when you're selling directly to people, obviously social media can play a very, very important role. But it also can add one thing that most companies forget is that if I wanted to bring on a line of new products and that company itself is very, very strong and social media, that's going to be very attractive to me, right? This company not only already has customers, but they have fans, and those fans are going to spill over. And there's gonna be synergy with our own marketing, our own social media program. And that's one of the pieces of advice I gave. The gentleman is having a strong social media program is gonna have positive influence when you negotiate with these companies, not just for your own e commerce, but also to show that you are a respected brand that has a following and therefore sales will follow very, very important for credibility these days, especially if you're a start up. The question then becomes well, how much is this gonna cost? And how much am I going to get back from this? And as you all know, there is no one single answer. In fact, I quickly turned around and said, Okay, if you're gonna advertise in the newspaper, advertise on radio, put up a website. How much you gonna get back from that, right? You don't know. You don't know until you try. And it's on Lee, after part of the experiment of trying out different things, do you begin to see Okay, if I put out a block post, I know it's gonna attract X number of new website visitors and out of X number of new website visitors. I have an average conversion rate of 0.5% in the average sale from someone who comes to my block is $30 so that I know that if I write a block post that is read by 500 people and I have that sort of a conversion rate that's gonna equal maybe $100 in revenue, it's that sort of calculation that you need at the end of the day for each type of marketing that you do on each channel to really drive the r A y home. But if you're not gonna do social media, what are you gonna d'oh? It's gonna cost a lot of money. The beautiful thing about social media, it's free. The problem is, once you start outsourcing that social media, it's not free anymore. This is why. And I think all of you know, I've worked with agencies in the past, but I'm very passionate about empowering others to be able to do social media on their own. I like to empower social media agencies, social media consultants to help them out. But I also like to empower my direct customers to help them do it on themselves, to look for internal talent that could do it for them. And if they do want to go the outsourcing route, I have people that I've worked with that I highly recommend in addition to that, as long as they own the strategy, they can definitely control the quality and the budget for what work is going to be done in terms of the social media. But yes, if you're trying to create relationships with people you've never met, it doesn't happen overnight. Why would Social Media be any different? It's gonna require a constant daily presence. Presence doesn't have to take a long time. It's gonna require a daily presence nevertheless, and it's gonna require the creating of content right, whether it's blog's or photos or videos. And in the future as your brand. It's well known you may not have to develop a CZ much of your own content, and you could be curating the content of your fans and sharing that with your communities. But it does require this sort of monthly expense now in the United States from the latest figures I read, if you look at the marketing budgets of cos they're spending between 10 to 20% on social media. So I asked the gentleman, What's your marketing budget? You haven't had a marketing budget going forward. Think of when you have a marketing budget. You have a Web site. You're probably gonna have paid ABS. There's a social component to paid ads, paid social, which I'm a big evangelist for, because I think it's extremely underutilized and inexpensive for what you can get out of it. But think about starting with 10 to 20%. Think about starting small and what are gonna be the immediate things you're gonna find. Well, number one, you're going to slowly build up a social media following. You're gonna build up followers and fans and those that circle you and what have you. So that's gonna be one of the immediate results. The other result is when you do that in combination with creating more content, you're not only going to get new website visitors from social media, but you're going to start getting a lot more website visitors from Google because the search engines will index your content. So you need to look at how these things trend over the course of a few months. On the other hand, you're gonna have the indirect benefits of all these companies you're trying to sell into of checking out your social media properties, looking what you're tweeting, who's engaging with you, how many fans you have, maybe even looking at your klout score, I don't know. And then you're also going to be able to use social media to find those direct clients to find them to lengthen. Engage with him on Twitter. What have you So I hope this gives you a very, very quick snapshot as two and maybe some of you and I've been asked by many people. Neil, how do you convince businesses on social media? My answer is, I don't I don't waste time on that. If you haven't bought in the social, you're gonna be wasting your time. People and businesses have such strong feelings about social media. I only work with those businesses and people that have already bought into the fact that they need it. And therefore, I don't waste my time on the sale cycle of trying to sell in a companies that don't understand that. But I'm sure even with that philosophy that I have, I still end up meeting people for the first time, as this did is a sort of pre sales opportunity. So I hope that that all makes sense. I hope that it's helped some of you and for others. It gives you a good, holistic feeling for the way of how to think about social media as part of your total budget, your total marketing activities and what can you see coming from it in the near future? That's all. For today's episode of Social Business Unplugged, I hope you'll join me again. Hope you're subscribing on iTunes. Rating this an iTunes and telling all your friends about it once again, If there's anything you'd like me to cover, please feel free to reach out to me on any of my social media channels or by email. Kneel at windmill networking dot com. Thanks again, everybody. I'm gonna rest my knee until next week, hoping the swelling is done by then. Have a great day. Have a great week ahead and will speak to you again. Bye bye. Thanks for listening to another edition of Social Business Unplugged. We appreciate your subscribing to our podcast. Please help us spread the word by sharing it on social media or adding your rating and comments in iTunes. If you would like to appear on the podcast or have content that you would like covered, please contact Neil Schaefer. Kneel at windmill networking dot com. Also, please subscribe to the windmill networking blogger on social media strategy at windmill networking dot com. Thanks again and make it a great day