With the advent of social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google + etc, many businesses have gone to advertising their businesses and services on these sites. This type of marketing is relatively new, but has always been around in the form of “word of mouth” advertising. By advertising on websites like Facebook and Twitter, a business can reach millions of possible customers all at once. Those numbers are definitely higher than for print ads in magazines and even television ads.
Using social media for your business can work if you are posting status updates that are engaging enough so people will want to follow you or read your updates. Facebook pages make it very difficult getting access to your fans (likes) as you can’t get their details (not even their name!) or private message them. To check out how many people are reading your Facebook updates go to insights. Usually the average is around 10-20%. SO my suggestion would be, only post engaging updates & try to steer away from posting marketing/selling updates e.g. lets say you have a lingerie business, instead of writing “great lingerie at discounted prices, check out our website” post something along the lines of “who is your most favorite curvy actress?” and post a picture of Marilyn Monroe with the update. If you’re not sure what to write just visit some of your competitors pages to get some ideas. Keep the updates to once a week unless there is something going on that you need to tell them about.
Another social media marketing idea is to pay for ads on these sites. Linked in and Facebook offer this at the moment. Keep in mind older people are more likely to click on ads than younger people are. A younger person is only on those types of sites to talk to their friends, post pictures of their fun weekend out, and possibly even play games. An older person does not have quite as much to do on these types of sites, so they are definitely more likely to notice the ads than a younger person is. The thing is getting them to click on them. Play around with a few different ad options and wording/images and test to see what works best and gets the most click throughs and conversions. You can target age groups, fans of other pages and other demographics in your ad so this is a great way to grow your Facebook or Linked In presence if you are starting out. e.g. Big Girls Lingerie / Like our page and go in the draw to win a free bra! – in this ad you could target women only that like other lingerie business pages.
So overall, does social media marketing work? Yes it does, if you know how to use it correctly. How you use it will depend on the type of business, some businesses will be better off using Facebook, others Pinterest, it will depend on what type of business you have. To access more information on social media download my guide to get an overview on the different types of social media and how to use them to benefit your business.