Without quantifiable goals, small and midsize businesses risk chasing ROI right down the drain…
It is about time small and midsize businesses got serious about social media – and that means planning. Without a plan, most businesses would be better to scrap their social programs and focus their resources elsewhere. Without quantifiable goals – no matter how basic, there is no way to determine if there is a benefit from their efforts or if they are simply wasting time.
If the clients we talk with are any measure, data indicates that most small businesses are “getting their feet wet” without any defined strategy. In fact, a recent study indicates that 20% of small businesses simply “use” social media while almost half said they “use it properly.” 31% of mid size firms said they have a “structured” plan, but still an alarming 20% say they do not have a defined plan for their social media activities.
Small businesses are especially prone to a lackadaisical approach to social media. A recent survey by http://www.Techaisle.com showed 70% of companies with up to 100 employees planned to use social sites for marketing purposes in the coming year, but 45% said they didn’t know how doing so would help them.
Think about that –
7 in 10 businesses are thinking about social media and close to half have absolutely no idea why.
They are following a trend instead of strategically planning to capitalize on new technology. This sets them up for failure from the beginning and leads those businesses toward a giant black hole with absolutely no return on their investment. Lucky for you, Managed Media was designed specifically with the small business in mind!
Depending on the business and the ownership, taking the initial plunge into social media without any experience isn’t always bad. Sometimes, jumping in reveals the known to the unknown and leads to innovation. Regardless of the method of introduction, businesses at some point need to formalize their plans or risk missing out on the many advantages available in the world wide web of social media. Eventually, business owners realize that a defined strategy provides for more purposes across a greater range of channels. At some point, it’s no longer a game and becomes a question of maximizing value and measuring success.
Having a social media plan doesn’t necessarily mean spending a lot of money. To coin an age old adage, “you get what you pay for” and in the internet world this line still holds true. Sure, today for as little as $50 a month you can get your web site “optimized” and there are services that “tweet” for you twice a day, every day, to 150K “followers” for $29 a month. There are others that “tweet” for you 6 times a day to 16K followers for $50. For $129, one company will let you “buy” links to “optimize” your page ranking in a search result.
Before we start any work, we listen – to you. We learn your business and then create a strategic analysis of your industry and your customer. This insight provides valuable information used throughout the social media life-cycle. Next we create a customized communication plan tailored to your business so we can tell your story to the thousands of potential customers listening in the world of social media. This especially sets Managed Media apart from the others that are “tweeting” thousands of times every month with absolutely nothing to say. Again read our blog on the message.
Now, after all that – after we’ve built the foundation– we deploy the technology. Now that we know who your customers are and what they want to hear, we put your message on-line in the world of social media. We hit multiple targets from multiple touch points with multiple messages at multiple intervals. Organically, your business will start to grow & you will continually see new names & faces walk through your door on a daily basis.
There is no simple way to define strategic communications. It builds a brand. It changes perception. It connects your organization with people and moves them to action. Smart strategy makes communication meaningful – to your audience and your bottom line. You need to ask the right questions to translate your business objectives into effective communication strategies. You need to position your product and provide value.