To be able to use social media marketing strategically, you need to stay a step ahead all the time. And, in light of the fact that the most popular platforms are consistently releasing updates, it can get quite overwhelming. Fortunately, despite these obstacles, there are some hacks you can apply, to ensure you get the best of word-of-mouth marketing and still keep your sanity. Let’s take a look at some of these expert tips and how you can apply them to make your life as easy as possible.
Use Popular Hash Tags To Create A Stream On Twitter
Of course, the best place to find social media trends, is on social media channels. Have a look at Twitter or even Google News to see what’s trending and create your hash tag stream. If you’re running shy on ideas you can also check out Hashtag.org to help you out. Remember also that if you want focused tweets related to your stream, your hash tag should be specific.
Moz.com suggests the following resources to improve your Twitter performance as well:
Use tools like Followerwonk or Twellow to find like-minded users. Also look at who they interact with and get engaged with those communities. Tools like Xobni and Rapportive integrate with Outlook and Gmail to help you uncover social profiles of people you already know. Twitter’s Discover experience can help you dive into different conversations. Also, check out Twitter Categories, which lets you browse the best accounts on a wide variety of topics.
You do not have to look too hard to find out who is influential on social media channels. If they’re “influential” they have to be pretty outspoken, and that makes them quite easy to find. And, if you are not practicing this important philosophy, now would be a good place to start: “It’s not what you know but who you know” and social media is one place where you really can see this in operation.
Once you have created your hash tags you can start looking into who are the most influential people are within that niche. Create a Twitter list based on this research. Make sure you dedicate time every day to reading up what these people have to say about it. Pretty soon you will be able to start ranking yourself as one of those influencers.
Use Google Alerts To Be The First In The Know About Major Announcements
Google Alerts enable you to receive notifications whenever one or more of your influencers start talking online. If the person posts content or has an interview, a Google Alert is the fastest way for you to find out, short of watching your own information stream. In fact, even if you have followed step one and two above, a Google Alert can serve as a safety net, in case you have missed something.
Fluxe Digital Marketing has this to say about Google Alerts:
The oldest tool is one you have probably heard of but is still the best out there and keeps getting better, Google alerts. Google alerts is excellent for putting your monitoring on autopilot because you can have search results sent to your email as they happen, daily, or weekly. Use the same search parameters I outlined above with the quotations to get the best results from Google alerts.
If you want to keep your work as easy as possible, stick to a maximum of three influencers to start with. If they are prolific with published content, that should keep you busy enough.
Participate In LinkedIn Groups
Why participate in LinkedIn group discussions? Well, as Hubspot points out:
Discussions on LinkedIn about social media for business are extremely lively. Whether there’s an update to Facebook, a new social network that’s making traction, or a new theory on the future of social media, you are sure to find it in LinkedIn groups. Even better, you will meet a lot of other social media enthusiasts that you can network with and ask questions.
LinkedIn is ideal for marketers that are prepared to put their face and name to discussions, and who are interested in building themselves as industry leaders. If you want direct interface and want your professional name to be behind your brand, LinkedIn is the place to do it.
Follow The Right Social Media Blogs
In the same way that you will be following other social media influencers on those networks, you should ensure you also keep up-to-date on what social media blogs are publishing directly. Subscribe to the best blogs out there and set some time aside in your diary every week to bring yourself up to speed.
Ask Influencers For Favors
You can also reach out directly to people in the know and ask them for some promotion. Of course this takes tact and technique, as well as your ability to show them what you are asking for can also provide value for the person concerned.
So how do you do it? Conduct your research and ask the person in question directly by name if you would like him or her to publish your article on a blog or website. Research the kind of content that the person has published on their platform in the past, so you can ensure yours has the right angle and interest factors. Remember that you should be focused on building a long term relationship, so your pitch has to be done correctly.
Make Your Metrics Clear From The Beginning
Social Media Examiner says:
One of the easiest ways to do this is to ask your fans and followers to do something specific (i.e., provide a clear call to action) and then track their responses (e.g., email signups, downloads or shares). That doesn’t mean you should ignore metrics like reach or engagement, but for many marketers those metrics don’t always provide a clear path to sales and revenue.
Whatever strategy you are embarking on, you need to be able to measure if your results are successful or not. Decide right at the beginning how you will decide this, and how you will measure the results.