Popular social media networks are now being frequently used as professional communities. Based on recent statistics and analysis, users were asked to rank their top five preferred professional networks online. The social media LinkedIn leads the rankings, preferred by 92 percent of the respondents. It is followed by Facebook, which is preferred by 51 percent of the respondents, the fast growing network Twitter, which has a 41 percent preference, the smart address book Plaxo, which got 13 percent, and the social network intended for small businesses Xing, which got a 7-percent preference rating. It now depends on the marketer how to convert these numbers to business gain.
Lead Generation Using Social Media
For marketing professionals, social media is business leads. There are many social media techniques available, some can deliver favorable results and some not quite. If this happens, you have to evaluate all your options and strategies in order to generate optimum lead results.
Social Media Lead Generation Techniques
Here is a guide for you on how to generate actual leads using social media.
- Make your products and services known. Know how your target market responds and keep them constantly informed about how your company is doing and know the latest updates about your products or services. Include links to product reviews, blogs, and articles in your updates and posts. Share updates and articles via Facebook, Twitter, Flickr,YouTube and other social media and bookmarking sites.
- Use links to promote your brand. Creating your own fan page on Facebook or setting up your company’s Twitter profile is not enough to gain you more fans or followers. You have to feed them with necessary updates to keep them interested in your product. One major step to promote your presence in social media is through promotions and advertisements. Include your social media profiles in your business letters, transactions, business cards, blogs, and in your product website.
- Constantly monitor how your product is faring against the competition. Listening to what customers are saying is the most important difference of social media marketing from traditional marketing strategies. Another importance of monitoring social network conversations is you can immediately respond to leads and convert it to increase your customer base. You can also monitor mentions of your brand name, trademarks, and competitors in the social networks, blogs, and news items. Since social media have provided ways for customers to make their feedbacks known to product managers, marketers should take advantage of this tool to gauge customer’s response and make informed marketing decisions.
- Do not forget to respond to feedbacks and inquiries. You can use the information you gathered by monitoring social networks, act and reach out to customer by continuous information dissemination, additional links, promo codes, discount coupons, and other items that are useful to gain more business leads. Try to respond to every comment, review, or questions posted about your product. Be consistent in your response and take note of everything including the not so positive ones. Be sure to take note of useful comments and do not forget to thank your users. Do not forget to include in your responses links to your site and products to promote your brand further.
- Develop physical relationships. Make an effort to meet with your fans and customers in person. Developing customer relationships in person can create an impact with your customers not likely to happen in the online setup.
Not-So-Popular Strategies for Lead Generation
Aside from the techniques mentioned above, several other techniques are also useful in generating additional leads and customers for your business.
- Include Call to Action (CTA) in business blogs. Businesses that maintain blogs get up to 55 percent more traffic. You need to monitor and identify your blog visitors to convert the traffic to additional customers.
- Encourage referrals in your articles and blogs. Ensure the continuous flow of more followers and fans into your website that can be converted into leads by implementing contests or asking your current followers to promote and recommend your product in their individual core networks.
- Maintain a Facebook Fan Page. Create fan pages that are easily accessible for potential followers and fans. The easier your fans can access your page, the more leads will be generated.
- Fill up completely your social network profiles. The more your followers know about you, the more trust they will give to your product or service. You can customize your profile page to deliver as much necessary information that can be easily viewed by your users.
- Always include your product signature in all your social network transactions. Use a related resource your product signature link and use this to gain more referrals and leads.
- Place only useful and high quality content in your site. The best promotion that directs more users to visit your site is by publishing informative content not only about your product but also about articles that address issues that concern your customers as well.
- Less friction, more leads. Evaluate your lead generation pathways to lessen or totally remove friction cause by too much clicks and redirects. Enable the easy conversion of visits and hits to encourage more customers into your site.
On top of this, avoid putting too many words in your article so customers will not be bored. Even if you have useful and relevant content, it also helps to add graphical representations or photos in your blogs and articles. Always remember to listen to customer feedbacks, make informed decisions and standards based on your gathered information, engage in a healthy interaction with your customers, and measure up the effects of your social media strategies in generating additional leads and customers, then return back to listening. Keep this cycle turning and remain up to date with all the innovations and developments so you can immediately implement your own timely product upgrades. It is also helpful to enlist the help of social media marketing experts to handle all your marketing tasks.
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