Social Media: Journey or Destination?

There’s a lot of buzz around about monetizing your social media or your blog.  After all, you’re building relationships, sharing dialogue and creating the ideal conditions for business.  Sounds great, doesn’t it?

Or does it miss the point entirely?  One of the most important tenets of social media marketing is that it is vital to give more than you receive.  Give enough information, expertise and guidance; and ye shall receive.  In fact, that is a foundation of all internet marketing.  But, when it comes down to it, your business success depends on your ability to sell.  Yuck – what a dirty word!

That’s why, as an SME, you should think of social media as being a journey you travel with your prospect.  It gives you the chance to bond and establish your expertise, but when it comes time to buy, your prospect will still head off to your website to check the facts.  Yes, they want facts – and they want them now.  They want an easy access that they won’t get searching through blog posts, comment threads or updates.

That’s why all your social media posts should contain a call to action, leading your prospects further along your sales message and ideally toward your website.

So, get clear about what you want to achieve with the two different vehicles:

Use Social Media to Build Trust:

  1. Build relationships
  2. Expand your network
  3. Generate traffic to your website

Use Your Website to Make Sales:

  1. Provide all the information your prospect needs to make a purchase decision
  2. Establish your expertise with solid information
  3. Ask for a sale

When you separate the two vehicles and clearly define your objectives, then you’re setting yourself up for success.

There are plenty of people out there who have successfully turned social media into a money making enterprise, but I believe that for most SMEs it will always be a stepping stone to the real selling that takes place on the website.  What do you think?

Download a free copy of  The Website Strategy Report to find out more about how to plan a more effective website.



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