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FROM THE FORTE

Perspective from Double Forte Public Relations and Marketing

Month

March 2015

Social Media Doesn’t Work: 5 Ways to Change That Fact

#FAIL“Social media doesn’t work.” We hear it all the time from prospects, and they are right. Social media doesn’t work – if you don’t use it. The  biggest naysayers of social media are the people and brands that don’t use it, or, the people who tried it but quit too soon to reap the rewards. So we agree, if you don’t invest in social media, you won’t see results. No argument here.

If however, you want to join the legions of people and brands who have realized tremendous benefits from social media marketing, keep reading. Here are five ways to make sure social media works.

1. Build before you blab. So often, we meet marketers who hope to use social platforms to reach their target audiences. So they start a Twitter or Instagram account as part of their launch strategy. They tweet. They post. And four people see it. You’ve got to build a following before your social presence will work. If a tree falls in a forest…

2. Build trust first. Speaking of building, trust should be your number one objective when you embark on a social strategy. You must build trust among your followers in order for social to pay off. And you build trust by listening before speaking, responding to your followers, being authentic and transparent. A social media account, on any platform, is not a megaphone. It’s the digital version of two cans and a string, with a speakerphone and web conferencing. It’s designed for you to connect with people.

3. Mix it up. Those brands you envy on social? Chances are they didn’t earn it all. Savvy marketers are mixing earned strategies with paid posts because a good social strategy blends earned efforts with paid promotion. Social media is no place to separate church and state.

4. Get off the island. Do you work in a company with a smart, integrated marketing program? Where advertising, PR, direct and other disciplines are coordinated and synergistic? Great. But then there’s the digital team. Those “young kids” doing that “social stuff” and they sit by themselves and work alone. That’s a recipe for failure. Social should be integrated in the marketing mix.

5. Measure what you treasure. During standardized testing season, my kids come home from school and tell me, “We measure what we treasure.” They sound like little robots as they playback what they heard from the principal. If you want to see a payoff from your social media efforts, get robotic about measuring your work. Almost every social media platform has built in analytics – use them.

Follow these guidelines for social success. Or, tweet us @DoubleFortePR and tell us again how social doesn’t work. You know tweet. 140 characters. It’s a message on Twitter. That’s a social networking site.

Just call us. We can explain.

 

Why You Need a Content Audit (featuring Vince Vaughn)

Successful applauding executives sitting at the table

By now we all agree, don’t we, that a content strategy is key? It’s key to search, key to owning your message, key to lead generation, key to your overall communications strategy. We think Vince Vaughn would agree. But do we all know that every content strategy should start with an audit?

A content audit is an excellent way to identify what you need from your content strategy. Before you can plan what you need, you need to know what you have. And, you need to know how well your existing content is performing for you. A content audit will tell you which pieces of content are driving leads, how your existing content is moving your audience through your website, and ultimately through your sales cycle, and whether or not you have the right mix of content for your various business objectives and target markets.

Here are the four basic steps to conducting a content audit.

1. Determine what you will classify as a piece of content. Potential sources include blog posts, contributed articles, case studies, white papers, videos, presentations.

2. Catalog your existing content. Make sure to track if you have the rights to the content, what format the content is in (text, video, infographic, audio recording), when it was created.

3. Assess the effectiveness of each piece of content based on Google analytics, downloads, or social shares. Determine what, it any, next steps you need to take. Does the content need to be fixed, updated or deleted?

4. Determine if you have the right mix of content by type, format, audience, and if you are sharing it with the right frequency, and in the appropriate voice. Be sure to compare your content to your competitors.

Once your audit is complete, your ready to plan your content strategy.

For more information on how to get your audit started, ask us. We think Vince Vaughn would want you to.

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