|Social Media Tips for Specialist and Technical industries|
Recently I was in a meeting with an SME taking first steps to use social media to drive more awareness and knowledge of their unique consultancy services.
Their biggest worry was how they could spend their limited time and resources on social media and make the most efficient use of the tools and strategies available to them at a low cost.
Given the nature of the business, it was obvious the content had to be done by someone who sat in their office and involved in the day-to-day operations of the business and had a good feel of the industry the SME was working in.
Once it was apparent that only members of their own marketing team could produce relevant and timely content for their social media campaign, I did a short 2-hour workshop on tools they could use plus a few guidelines to keep in mind.
Knowing the target audience
Listening to the target audience more important to marketing success than pitching your services generically. Listening helps you repackage and articulate your service to suit the needs of your target audience. You might be offering exactly what your clients need but if they do not hear the key words and terminologies in your crisp one liner tweets, then you have to increase your effort ten fold just to be heard.
Interacting with the target audience
There is no shame in following people whose opinion matters to your business and organizations that can be stakeholders to your business. The thought that you should have more followers than people you should follow was coined by narcissist influencers placing a superficial importance to themselves because they had nothing else of substance that would make them feel wanted. As a business, you need to remain realistic, honest and engage with the target audience you need to make your business successful.
Track web actions of your target audience
Use hashtags to attract your target audience
If you’re not using them already, then try searching your brand and product names across all relevant social networks using the key words and if your brand does not come up, then you know it is about time to start using hashtags.
Using hashtags with key words relating to your business lets you see immediately what people are saying about your brand and what they are posting about your brand. It also allows you to see what your competitors are doing online.
How to communicate with your target audience
There is a “science” and “art” to creatively use online platforms to communicate your message that instantly becomes more effective and engages your target audience. Don’t just say what you need to say to the different demographics in your audience but think first and consider that that how you communicate the message is equally important.
Using visuals with words get more people to look at your message so use this tool effectively. Think more about who receives your message and keep the relevance in mind.
How much should you communicate with your target audience?
Posting multiple messages can get overwhelming if you are a small business so set a pace that challenges you but is realistic and gets the message across subtly. Most organisation limit their online posts to one or two per day but if you have multiple brands, you may want to create separate accounts for each brand and have more corporate content posted from the parent company.
Building a target audience that lasts
The best thing you can do for your company and organisation is to encourage steady growth online. Do not fall into the trap of buying fake followers and educate the marketing team that engaging with influencers with fake followers does not add to their professional credibility. In fact they lose respect by highlighting that they have not done their homework.
The bottom line is that your prospects and clients are being bombarded by marketing messages constantly and it is more beneficial to invest your time on the relevant and real contacts online that fake followers you buy. It is tough to get your share of attention online but if you do it right and keep it credible, then it will pay off in the long run.
By Shereen Shabnam
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