You asked. We answered!
Questions asked by real Boerne business owners during a social media breakout at the 2019 Boerne Business Conference.
Earlier this year I had the honor of being a keynote speaker to over 100 women at the HCWIB (Hill Country Women in Business). As a guest of Laurie Broesche and the Boerne Chamber, this event was one of the highlights of my year. Why you ask? When you have a large gathering like this and the first one or two questions break the ice, you really get to hear from people’s hearts as to what keeps them up at night with regards to growing and sustaining their business.
So, when we attended this year’s Boerne Business Conference, it was fun to be a fly on the wall during the social media class breakout to hear what questions would arise on one of the hottest topics in marketing.
Question 1: How can I integrate all my social media sites?
Great question! One of the most time consuming tasks for any business is bouncing back and forth between dashboards trying to make the most sense of incoming data. Is the ad working or not? Am I getting likes? Are people responding positively or negatively? Did I respond to that comment?
It is maddening…until now. Earlier this year we debuted a new social media management platform for all of our clients. This plug and play dashboard will integrate ALL of your social media sites plus your blog plus your analytics into one simple-to-use dashboard. Meaning you no longer need to bounce between Facebook and your computer – your phone and Twitter. The dashboard allows for real-time, live results…and the best part is you can schedule posts, comment, view analytics and so much more – all from one place! Our dashboard even allows you to schedule posts to your Instagram business account.
Question 2: How can I measure success?
You must ask yourself – what does your business define as success? Here is one example to put this question into perspective. One of our local golf courses hosted a 4-person themed golf tournament earlier this summer. Their goal and what they perceived as success, was to sale out the event, which would mean 140 golfers.
Utilizing Facebook and Instagram, our team developed a successful campaign, targeting the interest and behavior of persons within a 40 mile radius who expressed an interest in golf and the outdoors. Our campaign goal was to drive these fans to sign-up their team online.
We know for a fact through tracking those digital ads (using a Facebook pixel embedded into the website URL code) that at least 25% of the event sign-ups came from social media advertising. Now comes the day of the event. At our prompting, the golf team working the event did a large giveaway prize in exchange for each golfer turning in a short questionnaire. The answers given by the golfers were even further proof that the social media advertising efforts had in fact generated a large number of sign up. That is success!
Another example of success involves a local San Antonio indoor gun range. They wanted to advertise themselves via an informational, fun video on Facebook, but kept getting their boosted video and ads denied because of Facebook advertising guidelines, which restrict advertising guns and ammunition.
Through a creative tactic, our team was able to successfully deploy a high end video campaign, generating thousands of new views to key behavior and interest demographics we pre-determined. This new awareness has increased business by over 20% in the past 4 months and that is what our client deems a huge success.
So, start with your end goal in mind of what you consider to be success and then work your strategy back from that end goal. The above examples are just a taste of the tactics we deploy each and every day for our clients. Using embedded pixels and other tactics, we can prove the results of our work. If you are hitting a roadblock with your digital advertising and having a hard time defining success, then lets’ talk!
Question 3: How do I create my target audience?
Another great question. There are several factors to consider. First, our team likes to look at historical data from Google search results. The audience tab in Google Analytics will provide great insight to the age, gender, interest and demographics of your historic website visitors. This allows us to determine who your clients are, the number of monthly search queries, the most popular search term or phrase being used and the area or region specific to our client. While some of these tools are proprietary to our agency as a certified Google partner, there are still ways the average business owner can do useful research.
Another great way to research your target audience is to search for top hashtags related to your industry. Multiple sites will give you the top 20-25 hashtags based on your search term, which you can then use to do a little deeper dive into potential customer behavior patterns.
Finally, our last comment on this question pertains to utilizing both “behavior” and “interest” targeting. For example, when we ran a Veterans Day ad for a local client, we not only plugged in key interests areas that matched up to the ads, but also aligned the ads to target those people who said they were employed as a police officer, fire fighter, first responder or had served or currently were serving as active duty military. Taking a little time on the front end to define your audience, whether you’re using YouTube, Google, Facebook or Instagram for advertising, goes a long ways in getting more for spend and not wasting valuable advertising dollars.
Tips to help grow your social media success.
Tip 1: Focus on reach, not on numbers – it’s more important to have engagement than to have high numbers or likes. Never try to buy likes.
Tip 2: Follow and comment on influencer accounts in your industry. DID YOU KNOW: Our dashboard allows you to search keywords and will automatically populate “influencers” for you.
Tip 3: Follow hashtags on Instagram. This allows you to find those top hashtags that pertain to your industry, so you can tag your own posts, placing your message in front of would be customers, fans or patients.
Tip 4: Engage with your audience! Engage with your audience! Engage with your audience! I cannot stress this point enough. People who actively engage with your business want to hear from you. If you don’t have time, assign an employee, intern or hire out this process. It is critical to any type of business in a world where customers want to be engaged with the business and are using social media as their first point of contact.
Tip 5: Pay special attention to properly define and research your “behaviors” and “interests” when setting up your digital campaigns. Facebook’s Artificial Intelligence Learning Machine is getting so advanced at placing your ad in front of the right audience, but you still need to give it a solid start.