While we were building the me:now playtform, I listened to a lot of marketing people.
Some offered pretty generic advice, talking about LinkedIn and Instagram, while others went into greater details discussing the minutiae of SEO, PPC & AdWords.
The platforms are important: if your customer base doesn’t reside on your social media service of choice you’re effectively talking to an empty room.
This is where such marketing consultants are worth their weight in gold, the best ones help identify where your customers are and put a plan in place to reach them. Then there are those that would have you trying to reach everyone on all platforms, at the same time, spending buckets of cash.
Of course, there is still the static advert that hopes someone – anyone – sees it. But “build it and they will come” only works for Kevin Costner.
With the exception of the static advert, the message is pretty much the same regardless of which platform you are using – you have to get involved.
These days, if you’re not taking an active part in your marketing, you’re not marketing.
- Instagram – you need to post photos
- Twitter – you need to post, reply or retweet
- Facebook – you need to share where you are or what you’re doing
- me:now – you need to let people know when you have free slots available
- Snapchat – To be honest, I have no idea.. I’m in my 40s
The key though, is that you need to be involved and you need to choose your platform wisely. For example, this post is aimed at small business owners and would be better placed on Facebook or Twitter than LinkedIn.
This advice is even more important for the small business, when there’s perhaps limited time and resources to devote to marketing.
It can be done
I’ll give you a couple of real-life examples.
- A dog walker who posts photos of the dogs they walk, showing them all having a great time. Potential customers now know that the dogs are looked after, so would want this person to have their dogs (posted on Twitter).
- A plumber who posts a basic video telling people how to unfreeze a condenser pipe during the winter – it saves people calling out a plumber but it also saves him going out to jobs that have a simple solution (shared on Facebook).
- A physiotherapist has had a cancellation – she notifies all her customers who want to know when she is free that she’s available (listed using the me:now app).
Each has engaged with their audience, but in a very different way.
Gone are the days when your only choice is to put up an advert and wait for people to come to you.