There are a lot of tight connections required for marketing to be effective in today’s highly digital, mobile and content-oriented world to increase your sales.
Two of the most important pieces that need to be closely tied together are social media marketing and content marketing.
Honestly, we wouldn’t recommend doing one without a solid understanding of the other. It's not that they can’t work independently, but they function exponentially better when they are tied together with a strategic marketing plan.
Here’s how they work together.
Think about social networks like an airport, and think about content marketing as the various aircraft responsible for moving you or your goods across a region, country or globe. Both aspects are necessary to get you where you want to go. Metrics and reporting represent air traffic control, flight schedules and even the aircraft avionics that ensure you get to your desired location as quickly as possible.
Social Media As Your Content Airport
Unfortunately, as marketers, we have to build our own airport, runways and control tower. There are some existing social marketing outlets that we can use to distribute our content; however, the bigger your own social media networks, the easier it is to gain traction with your content and grow a base of followers.
Building airports on your own takes time. But one of the fastest ways to accomplish this is by getting your entire crew to encourage prospects and customers to connect with your company on LinkedIn, follow you on Twitter, friend you on Facebook and join your circles on Google+. Make sure these followers get into your network. Personal networks are fine, but it’s better if they’re part of your corporate social networking effort.
The more you publish, the more the numbers go up. The more active and engaged you are with these networks, the more the numbers go up. Think about it: Would you rather follow someone on Twitter who posts once a day or once a month? You have to be prolific if you want to grow your network. This is where content comes into play.
Content Marketing As Your Fleet of Aircraft
You have to get your message out to your prospects, right? Content is your means of transportation. While social sites offer you endless options for flight routes, you need to package up your thought leadership, insight, research and experience into informative content that your “audience” is going to want.
Presentations, slide decks, infographics, whitepapers, e-books, videos, tip sheets and other types of content need to be created on a regular basis. If you only transport your message, story and value proposition once a year, you’re not going to generate a lot of leads or grow a base of followers. But if you transport your stories monthly or even weekly, you have a much better chance of getting noticed and connecting with prospective customers.
There's a lot to this content thing. You need to keep your keywords in mind as you create the content. You need to write content that is perfectly crafted based on your company's target personas or buyers. You have to understand the problems they have and use the content to help present solutions. It’s complicated, but nonetheless very feasible.
Tracking And Metrics Through Air Traffic Control
Finally, everyone needs help with directions from time to time. Do we go right, left or straight? When you have the right metrics, analytics and KPIs, you know how to make course corrections to get to where you’re going ahead of schedule. Isn’t that the name of the game? If we can get you to 100 new leads a month in six months instead of 12 months, that sounds like a major improvement to me.
Keep track of conversions for the content, watch the views on your blog and look at what content provides the best-qualified leads. Once you get a few months of data under your belt, you’ll want to refocus your efforts on better-performing content and further optimize the performance of your inbound marketing program.
If you're looking to build a marketing machine that drives results and increases your sales, social media marketing and content marketing need to be part of the same inbound marketing effort. To learn more about inbound marketing and discuss your marketing challenges, schedule a free 30-minute consulation.