Is it? Well, not really. But such seems to be the attitude of some of the clients with whom I interact with. It has become my side-job to actively persuade business clients why they should invest their time and money into social media activities. Some just don’t see anything good about social media marketing. This is why I’ve taken a few of the common quotes that I’ve heard and try to answer them.
“Social media ROI can’t be measured!”
Oh yes it can! For example, you can track your landing page goal conversions and tie them directly to traffic sources. These goal conversions can be associated with sales.
For example: say that you are blogging and you are posting these posts on Facebook. While doing so, you’re being smart and you tag these links to measure different sources. On your business blog, you have a contact form for people who want to order your services and this contact form is associated with a Google Analytics goal. In short, with your CRM you can directly measure how many leads you are generating with your social media activities and how many of those result with sales.
ROI = (return – investment) / investment
You already know how much resources you’re spending on social media activities. Now add all of these returns up and do the simple calculation.
There are also plenty of Social Media Monitoring tools that are already allowing integration with different API’s like Google Analytics and CRM’s. One of those new-era tools is Argyle Social, which allows you to tag links, make campaigns, set goals and measure monetary value gained from social media activities.
“Social media takes up too much of my valuable time”
Okay, slow down just a bit! I get that you’re time is valuable but so should be the end product of these social media activities. Moreover, the time you spend on social media can be used efficiently if you decide to use proper tools for each activity.
“Social media is for B2C”
On the contrary! B2B can use social media and gain a lot of value in doing so. For example, your blogging efforts will result in a better search engine ranking for specific long tail keywords which will get you more traffic to your website. Now, if your website is any good, you will be able to convert that extra traffic into leads and sales thereafter.
Social media can also be used for kick-ass recruiting. Your business can find potential new workers from LinkedIn and even Facebook where you can target the right future employees for your business and also portray your organisation in a way that would be appealing to the targeted people. You can make them think “this is exactly the company I would love to work for!”
“Social media is a toy and can’t be taken seriously”
It’s not a toy, it’s a tool and a very useful tool at that. Social media allows you to participate in dialogues with friends, family, brands, organizations, celebrities, favorite athletes and so on. For businesses, it’s a method to reach their current and potential customers on a personal level and on their playground. You must go where your target audience is. It’s silly to hope that your target audience visits your website all the time. They do however visit social networks and this is why you can take a step forward and start conversations with them on their terms. Not yours.
“Social media will get my business negative feedback”
Sure enough you will be a recipient of some negative feedback and criticism. However, this is completely normal and you shouldn’t try to hide it. What’s even better, if your business can publicly solve someone’s problem or deal well with criticism, your company will become more appealing to the general masses. “This company really cares about their customers and understands their needs. I’m intrigued!”
“Social media is a fad and will be dead in two years”
I’ve heard this before. Sure, we cannot predict the future but I think that social media is here to stay. Humans have always been social beings and now there is technology to provide us with the means to communicate and share experiences. Social media is already deeply integrated with the internet and it seems that those businesses who are unfavor of social media are the ones likely to die in a few years time.
“Social networks are not for my business, I can’t generate sales through SM”
Social media is not always about selling. Say that you have a product that’s hard to sell online and you have a lot of competitors all with similar products and prices as yours. Without a doubt you would start to question the effectiveness of your social media activities. But consider this – through social media your business can provide customer service which might make the difference between you and your competitors because it gives extra value to your product and might be the single important aspect that differentiates you from your competitors.
With social media your business can engage in a two-way communications with your customers in order to build a better product and to really understand your buyers. It should never be just about selling!
I still expect to see a lot of nay-sayers in 2012 but I believe they will become a very small minority. Most businesses have already realized the gem that is social media and how to harness it. Bottom line is that nay-sayers will never cease to exist, no matter what you do. The important thing is to take their opinion with a grain of salt and don’t let them stop you from exploring social media.
Original article posted by Mart Prööm
What are your thoughts? Do you think social media is pointless?