The traditional marketing model was to get as many readers on your product or service’s message as possible and hope that a percentage of customers purchase. Yellow pages, radio advertising, direct mail, television projects, publication ads, etc.. are examples of these traditional advertising methods. These conventional types of marketing are no fastest smm panel longer effective as many consumers have become blind to the ‘one way’ messaging. The message has been overdone and the great no longer trust advertisers. An up to date survey found that only 14% of people trust ads while 76% of people trust consumer recommendations. Accordingly, more marketers began seeking alternative ways to connect with potential consumers.

Marketing on the internet was originally made popular by utilizing Websites and optimizing those sites through Search engine optimization (SEO) techniques. While still a worthwhile strategy, SEO has been updated by Web 2. 0 strategies, such as social media marketing. Social media marketing is when companies utilize Web 2. 0 platforms, such as blogs, social networking sites (like Facebook, Google+, Foursquare, Twitter, & YouTube) and other emerging online marketing tools. The benefit of web 2. 0 platforms versus traditional means of advertising, and even traditional website marketing, is that it involves ‘two-way communication’, where users are empowered to generate content and businesses are incentivized to communicate with their customers.

The periods of broadcasting your product or services message out to the masses and looking forward to an answer are gone. People don’t want to invest in nameless, faceless companies. Not only are consumers watching the ‘man behind the curtain’, but they also want to know what others say about your goods and services. An up to date study concluded that 80% of us Internet using moms were influenced by word-of-mouth from friends and family when reaching a purchase decision. No other media platform allows for small businesses to benefit from consumer word of mouth advertising like social media marketing.

Benefits of Social media marketing

Increased New Customer Acquisitions — The main advantage of social media marketing is that you will have the option in order to connect with networks of potential customers that you would otherwise be unable to come across utilizing other traditional marketing techniques and even SEO.

Word of mouth Marketing- Word of mouth marketing has always been the most influential way to generate sales. With social media marketing, you are able to create raving fans who will voluntarily promote your product and services to their networks of friends. Of course, if your goods and services is poor, you may suffer the reverse benefits of this.

Brand Awareness — Branding your business using social media marketing is much simpler, faster, and less expensive to achieve than the traditional advertising medium or even website marketing.

Customer Retention — Web 2. 0 platforms are the perfect places to communicate with your prospects about new products, special promotions, or merely to teach them on your business. Through consistent, FREE communication, you can keep your company in front of your patron’s readers which will in turn lead to repeat business and referrals. Remember, the key to this type of communication is to be content rich; don’t make use of these avenues to pitch your goods and services.

Rapid Results — The effective and successful enactment of a social media marketing plan will create almost immediate results for your business. This increase can be quantified through increased site traffic, increased lead acquisition, and ultimately increased sales. Unlike radio or TV ads, where your prospects disappear once the ads turn off air, these web 2. 0 platform benefits will continue long-term as long as the communication and updating of your social media presence is maintained.
Why Aren’t More Businesses Utilizing Social media marketing?

Quite frankly, most businesses don’t know how to create or implement this type of strategy. What options to small business owners have when seeking to create & implement a social media marketing plan:

Hire an employee- while utilizing the time, experience, and services of others is a smart way to trade, many times this strategy fails. Why? Ultimately, it is up to the private business owner to create the plan and manage the employee. However, most business owners don’t understand web 2. 0 enough to manufacture a plan and haven’t a hint as to how to manage the employee. Plus, paying an employee increases your labor costs, your payroll taxes, your benefit, etc…

Outsource- entrusting is a better alternative to hiring an employee as you won’t have to hire, train, manage, and pay an employee to perform these functions. However, there is a price for these benefits. Entrusting these services can be very expensive. I’ve known social media companies to charge over $1, 000 to manufacture a Facebook Fan Page. This task takes, no more than, 20 minutes to set up. Again, the problem orbits around education. If you can’t discover how social media marketing works, then you shouldn’t hire or outsource the tasks unless you’re able to overpay.

Do it yourself- The fact is learning the basics of social media, creating a plan, and implementing the plan is a task that every business owner is capable of performing. Finding the right training programs that will show you step-by-step how to create and manage web 2. 0 platforms is paramount as is utilizing software that will allow you to manage all of your accounts from one simple location. With a little bit of an investment in education, you can create your very own web 2. 0 marketing plan. With a little bit of research, you can find an all-in-one infants social media dashboard that will allow you to perform your web 2. 0 marketing in just 10 minutes a day.

He Bukacek is CEO of Black Box Social media LLC, a ‘managed for’ social media marketing consulting company that focuses on higher end clients. Black Box Social media has also developed an online web 2. 0 educational platform called ‘Social Media in 7 Minutes. The reason for SMI7M is to show small businesses how they can create and implement a social media marketing plan quickly and inexpensively. SMI7M consists of 30+ how to videos refined how to set up and use web 2. 0 platforms such as Facebook, Google+, Foursquare, Twitter, LinkedIn, and online directories to allow you to connect and interact with both your current and potential customers. SMI7M also has it’s own unique software, ‘7 Minute Dashboard’ that allows the user to engage, manage, and schedule all social media posts from all accounts in just one place. This software allows the business owner to implement their plan in just just 7 minutes a day.

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