We are in the age of social media, there is almost no reason to not have a presence on social media if you’re a business in this day and age, not only are the benefits huge but not having a presence can negatively impact your business. It’s also crazy that currently we have access to as much free marketing as we do, before the era of the internet and the social platforms businesses had almost no marketing for free (other than shouting out of your window) so to be marketing in today’s age we are lucky. Paid for marketing also has huge advantages and is the next step down the line for businesses and we will cover this in a later post. This being said free marketing is great but you can do some simple things and use some great free tools to really optimise the benefits.
Tracking & Analytics; it’s a great idea to have these building blocks in play from the start, doing so allows you to really see what’s working for you. If we take facebook data for example we can see that it gives us a good overview of reach and engagement, this is a good start it is showing us how many people are seeing, liking and sharing our posts and this starts to give us an idea of what sort of content is popular with our audience, however it can sometimes be misleading; just because a post has great reach does not mean it is generating people to read your content. A great free tool for taking this principle of tracking the success of your posts is Google Analytics, this tool can be added to your site and provides a great wealth of data on who is coming to your site, the technology they are using and where they are getting to your site from. With google analytics enabled we can now see who is coming to the content on your site, be it a shop page or blog post and this really gives you the next level of determining the success of your posts on social media and also the success of where you’re directing people; you might find that some pages you link to are more successful at keeping the user attention and lead to higher conversions. Google Analytics can do some more in depth analysis on your site that can help you refine the build of your site with things such as visitor behaviour, we will visit this side of things in a later post as for now we’re sticking to the marketing aspects.
The Facebook Pixel is another great tool to get set up on the site as early as possible, this is a tool that you will begin to utilise more when you go down the route of paid marketing. The facebook pixel can track facebook user profiles of the people who are interacting with your site which can then be used for later advertising campaigns on facebook. The level of detail you can track with the facebook pixel is outstanding for example you can track those that use a certain form, buy something from your shop or even add something to their cart but don’t end up buying. With all this data it means you can create some amazingly refined facebook advertising campaigns, using the actual people who have carried out certain actions on the site or creating a mirror audience of people who share similar attributes of the people who carried out a certain action on your site. Even if we are not planning the paid for campaigns just yet, we can start collecting the data now so that when it does get to that time for the business we have a wealth of data at our disposal.
Once these elements are set up it is a good idea to form a social media plan, and to build it around what we have discussed before; what your successful content is and who you really want to target the content towards, what platforms you want to optimise your posts for, what posting times are more successful for your content based on when your audience is online. This plan is going to help you convert your audience into customers and sales, there is a lot of differing views about what kind of content you should be producing but finding out for yourself will be your best bet.
The Yell Business Scan checks for your business details on directories where Yell believes it is advantageous for you to be listed, the scan is free and you can go down the list and make sure you business is listed in as many of the free to list places as possible. This in turn will help people find your business and should help search engines find your business.
‘Free’ with all of these tools listed as free people tend to get away from the fact that employing the above tactics cost time, and time is money. It is important as the business manager that you evaluate your time and what it is worth to you, if your business would benefit more from the time being spent on other things compared to the time you would need to spend learning, implementing and maintaining these tools then it is wise to pay someone to make this happen for you.
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