Today we have more questions about marketing than ever before.
Why? Because of the rate at which marketing tactics are changing.
If you have been watching or working in the marketing space for the last 10 years, then you know what I mean.
Marketers are traditionally used to working with TV, Print and Radio media in which things did not change much for years. Even if it did, the rate of change was very low. It took many months to see a major change in the way they approached campaigns.
But that is not the case anymore. Today, marketing is changing at the speed of hyperloop. Everyday we see a new trend, a new product, a new feature, a new social network, a new technology and a new app popping up & challenging the way we think about marketing.
Disruption is becoming a norm in the marketing world.
That is why we now have more questions than we ever had. And it is important that we get these questions answered as quickly as possible, from the most reliable sources & experts.
Two good ways of getting our burning social media marketing questions answered are: attending the right social media conferences and reading the right social media books.
When I attend a conference I primarily look for 4 things:
– meaningful connections
– insights into future trends
– answers to key questions
– opportunities aligned with my purpose
Social Media Marketing World is an industry conference that scores very high on all the 4 aspects. That is why I make it a point to attend this conference every year (and to catch up with some of my good friends from the social media industry)
This year, the conference had more than 120 speakers and 3000 attendees. And many of my marketing questions were answered in the sessions.
3 Key Social Media Marketing Questions Answered by the Experts at SMMW
QUESTION 1: Which social media channel should you invest your time & resources in?
Instagram is one of the fastest growing social media networks in the world. In April 2017, Instagram announced that it had 700 million users (it took just 4 months for them to add the last 100 million). With Instagram Stories (thank you Snapchat!) and many other new features the channel is on fire and is definitely something to watch out for.
In SMMW17, this trend was confirmed by multiple speakers including Michael Stelzner in his opening Keynote. The Instagram sessions by experts like Sue B. Zimmerman, Jenn Herman and Peg Fitzpatrick only confirmed the growing influence of Instagram in the social media space.
An actionable step:
Start thinking about how you can incorporate Instagram into your social media marketing efforts. If you are already on Instagram, step up the activity, invest in visual story telling & branding, use Instagram Stories to tell your audience a story everyday, consider LIVE streaming some of your events or business activities using Instagram Live. If you are just starting to use Instagrem for business read this blog post, this will help you get started. If you like to know more about how to use Instagram stories, here is a list of practical tips.
QUESTION 2: What is the one marketing tactic to increase your organic reach?
ANSWER: Live Video
With algorithms, organic reach is becoming more and more difficult on all social media channels. But there are some tactics that can help you beat the algorithm and help you build an organic captive audience. One of the them is Live Videos. With social media channels giving preference to Live Videos in their newsfeed this is a great way for you to increase your reach and engagement with your social media audience. In SMMW17 the Live Video track was one of the most popular tracks and almost all the rooms were packed. The tracks had experts like Kim Garst, Joel Comm, Brian Fanzo and Lou Mongello sharing their expertise and strategies.
An actionable step:
Just start doing LIVE VIDEOS (use your mobile phone to start with).
If you are wondering, “what do I talk about when I go live” here is a list of 10 video content ideas for your business.
An important learning I had this time was to not get overwhelmed by the technical aspects of Live Video; like Camera, Microphones, Location, Lighting, etc. Even though these are important, you can always improve them as you go along. Right now just start with your smart phone. Find a quiet place that is well-lit and start communicating with your audience. Live audience are very accommodating and they look more for ‘value’ than ‘perfection’. Once you gain momentum, providing consistent-good content to your audience, you can work on and improve other cosmetic aspects of your video. For now, just focus on the content and go live!
QUESTION 3: Is there one foolproof social media marketing strategy that works for sure?
ANSWER: Yes, there is. Create good content, consistently.
It is very rare to see one answer repeat itself year after year for this million-dollar question – ‘what works on social media?’. But I have heard experts say this again and again: consistently creating good, value-adding content for your audience is a foolproof strategy that continues to produce long term results.
This year in the opening keynote I heard the same thing repeated by Mike Stelzner based on his research for the acclaimed annual Social Media Industry Report 2017.
The medium (blogs, videos, podcast) is not as important as the two keywords in content creation – ‘Consistency and Value Addition’. As long as you keep creating value-adding content on a consistent basis in some form, helping your audience solve a real problem there is a good chance that social media marketing will work for you. If you are just getting started with content marketing here is a list of useful articles on content marketing.
If you have any other specific question on social media marketing let me know using the comments section. I will try and find the answers for you.