Do you spend way too much time hanging out on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn in the hope of increasing your network to thousands instead of generating content? Or do you hang out in the comment section of A-list business bloggers relentlessly trying to get noticed?
If you’re answering “Yes” to the above then chances are that you’re so focused on being social and trying to get noticed by the people that supposedly matter that you’re hurting your business and not spending enough time actually creating content yourself.
Networking and online marketing success might appear to go hand in hand, especially because the so-called A-list social media experts and business bloggers have built a massive tribe of followers; however, it doesn’t have to follow. Being relatively anonymous and successful on social media can still go together.
One Tweet is All it Takes
The social media anecdote I always enjoying telling people is the one about how a solitary tweet that we sent out once resulted in over 100,000 SEK (16,000 USD) for a client. It was slightly more complicated than that, but not really. What happened was that a tweet was sent as a reply to a potential prospect, who in turn responded, checked out the business’s website, and then went on to forge a relationship with the brand we were representing. This in turn again resulted in a massive sale.
All this came about from a Twitter account with less than 20 followers and boy did I feel like a master of the universe :=)
What Works for You
Just because you believe other businesses are succeeding online because they have a massive network and bazillions of followers on Twitter and Facebook, it doesn’t mean you need to chase followers and friends. As with the example above, if the right prospect connects with you, it doesn’t matter how many followers you have.
A small business, typically, doesn’t need to connect with thousands of people worldwide to thrive and grow. If you’re a consultant or a small team committed to delivering quality B2B services you can still reach prospects locally through relatively restricted social media engagement. Especially if you’re providing value, joining conversations and definitely not trying to sell.
The Secret to Success
What the above experience taught me about Twitter and online marketing is that a tweet gets you a shot, a chance but a website works much harder for you.
A great tweet can direct people to check out the link in your Twitter bio, but I’m not so sure about a tweet’s ability to convert prospects into a customer â€“ at least not in the B2B sector. Instead that link in your bio effectively becomes a funnel to your website giving you one chance to convince visitors to your site that:
- a) you are worth following
- b) your site has something of value to offer
So here’s the rub.
By all means spend time connecting on social media channels. I truly believe it’s an important part of an integrated online marketing campaign; nevertheless, make sure you put oodles of time into creating quality content on your site that showcases:
- why you’re the kind of person (or business) to follow & connect with
- what skills and knowledge you have to share that will benefit visitors to your site â€“ for free
What makes quality content depends on your target audience and your niche, but most people will tell you that it involves a variety of media (text, audio, video) and answers the questions people have.
I personally don’t believe you’ll get much business as a B2B consultant or small business b2b service provider through social media marketing unless you have a website that delivers on the promise of your presence on Twitter suggests.
Or do you think differently?