One of the best known platforms for professional marketing, LinkedIn has proved to be an outstanding 277% better at lead generation compared to its peers, Facebook and Twitter. As of now, LinkedIn boasts of more than 2 million organisations and 200 million users, spread across 200 countries, ranging from home grown SMEs to large multinational, multicultural conglomerates. These statistics should not be surprising, since LinkedIn is one of the best open platforms for collaboration with internal marketing and IT teams, external customers and partners across industries, roles, organisations and functions. Imagine you had to reach out to some of the leading experts in your industry to get an insight into their perspectives on market trends and recent innovations – in real life, your scope would be restricted to your organisation, your college mates, your family and friends to get connected to such kind of people. With LinkedIn, you can get connected to the who’s who of your industry and also expect positive responses from them. Another advantage of this online networking platform is that it is one of the most effective mediums for you to clarify what you and your company offer as a product or service. Your website will always have relevant information, but the disadvantage there is that it is not updated so often. With LinkedIn, you can provide updates on a more regular frequency keeping all stakeholders informed on the most recent developments that are going on in the organization.
- Your company page: Everything on this page goes into building the image that your organisation showcases to the world. Smart organisations take time and effort in optimising their LinkedIn pages. The main thing is to ensure that the page has maximum ‘Buyer Appeal’. For this, the company description needs to focus on your product offerings and services and the market segments you cater to. You can use the ‘Specialities’ section to elaborate with the key words that are best suited for your organisation. 41% of IT buyers indicate that most organisations have content that is too generic. Hence finding out the areas that are niche to your line of work, and focusing on those will help your organisation stand out amongst the crowd.
- Highlight data points: There are two kinds of data. The first kind is full of detail, gives research insights and goes overboard in trying to explain concepts and scenarios. This kind of data is more suited for learning platforms that are looking to educate users. The second kind, which is more suitable for LinkedIn, focuses on actionable data – clear, simple and crisp – one that enables readers to take the next step of action towards continuing engagement with you.
- Photograph: Including your personal photograph is an essential element for effectively using LinkedIn. This shows to the world that you are a real person, working in a legitimate manner. It eliminates any doubt.
- Avoid noise: Whatever you do, make sure you do not repeatedly share posts by others just to create activity around your page. This is done by many when they do not have enough to show for themselves – and hence the posting and sharing technique to remind people that you are still alive. However, assuming that you are a legitimate person in a legitimate profession, there are bound to be many more original and relevant insights that you can share with your followers – because, believe it or not – the truth is that they are following you to get to really know you.
The first time that a social media campaign is created, there is loads of excitement, fun and the feeling of having discovered a gold mine free of cost! As time goes by, reality sets in and the importance of planning and evaluating your social activities comes into play. Yes, all of us know the key to a great social campaign – be responsive, interactive and engage your customers well. And what happens when you stop being responsive? Here are some statistics on how social media can create heaven or hell for you depending on how careful or careless you are in your attitude towards it. CUSTOMER SERVICE:
• 7 out of 8 social messages do not get answered within a period of 72 hours • Customer service teams respond to 1 in 8 emails immediately • 88% of genuine customer calls go unansweredIf this sounds like something that could happen (or is happening) in your organization then be prepared to pull your socks up. FIRST THINGS FIRST – INVEST IN YOUR TEAM The solution to avoiding delays in responses? Invest before you dive in. Have a team ready, have the right tools ready so that you can tackle real time situations in the best of ways. Integrating social media solutions with customer service tools such as UserVoice and Zendesk ensures that you are on top of the game at all times and are really tuned in with your customers. HANDLING COMPLAINTS: Consider this situation – A photographer once put up a picture of Barbara Streisand’s lavish mansion in Malibu on a social network. This didn’t go well with the celebrity singer who reacted in an aggressive manner and did all that could be done to suppress the publicity of the pictures. What followed is now famously known as the Streisand Effect. The very pictures that were being suppressed were distributed even more and landed up on websites, coffee mugs and even T-shirts. The lesson – negligence or defence to public criticism or expression can put you on a back foot forever. The solution – Get a PR team ready upfront and be prepared to deal with any kind of feedback from customers. Being polite and responsive will win you the battle even before it starts. For the best of solutions on engaging with your customers through social media, get in touch with the experts at Creative Ideaz today. References: Forbes, Sprout Social
Content marketers are slowly waking up to the power of the niche platforms on social media. Niche social platforms? Yes – for those willing to look at life outside of Facebook, LinkedIn and Pinterest, here is a list of some niche social media platforms that are surely worth exploring: But first, a note of caution: Businesses are already tapping into these platforms for reaching out to potential customers. However, by and large, most marketers are still unconvinced. Whether it is concern for brand reputation or preconceived notions about what will work for their business, they are waiting on the edge, until these platforms take off due to mass appeal. Therefore, the ones who are bold enough to venture into this area have in front of them an ocean of unexplored opportunities and could very well be rewarded with a surprise pot of gold along the way.
- 1. Care2:
- 2. GoodReads:
- 3. Quora:
If This Then That (IFTTT) is a fantastic platform for social media integration that allows you to connect multiple applications seamlessly. All you need to do is enlist all the applications you are interested in automating along with the recipe for what you would like the tool to do for you. Once that is done, Voila! You can sit back and relax and keep your focus on generating more innovative and relevant content. A few examples on the automation possibilities with IFTTT are:Bill Gates once said, “The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” For those who are confident of having mastered the foundation of online marketing, it’s time to take the next step towards automation. Automation techniques have known to bring about as much as 50% increase in productivity, saving you precious time and resources for the more creative fun parts at work. In addition to enhancing efficiency, the advantage of creating real time content is a key feature that is greatly valued by content marketers today. Here is an interesting tool that can serve as a useful aid for those who are ready to jump on the automation band wagon.
• Live Tweeting: How easy life would be if you could tweet interesting articles immediately as soon as they are released. With IFTTT, you could create a recipe that looks out for content with certain phrase or tag that you are interested in from sources that you identify. Once a match is found, the article can directly be tweeted from your twitter account without any manual intervention. If you would like to review or comment on the article before publishing it then the content can be saved in a buffer for you to take appropriate action when ready.
• Image Collecting: If you are particular on combining great visuals with your content, a lot of time that you spend looking for and organizing images can be saved by creating a simple recipe on IFTTT. For example, your recipe could be for selecting images with a certain hashtag and copying them into a predefined Dropbox folder. When you start writing for a certain topic, you will have a ready to use image collection to go along with the content.
• Real Time Alerts: A fashion house once wanted to publish content based on the weather forecast in their target regions. A great way for automating their work was to create an email or SMS alert for a given weather condition. For example, if you get an alert saying that it is going to rain tomorrow in London, you could create content relevant to the news giving additional value to your customers.Think about it. If you do fall in the category of businesses that are looking to magnify operational efficiencies, then Creative Ideaz can help open up a whole new world of productive possibilities. References: Content Marketing Institute