This is a guest post by Ryan Critchett.
Social media is bigger than we think. I think it’s bigger than we think it is, even when we think it’s big. I think, it’s monstrous.
We all at least know there is an opportunity to reach customers in a different way through social, but not everybody truly grasps the kind of brand awareness, business opportunities and startup growth that can take place on these channels.
That’s what I want to talk about. I want to take you through a series of events and social media marketing strategies that have propelled my company to new heights and put us in front of some serious brands. First, I’ll start off by saying…
Your Results Are Up To You
The single greatest part of the web marketing world is the fact that your results are ultimately up to you. If you spend 8 hours a day, for 6 months straight engaging your brain, and engaging the web to find and execute ways of building a lot of awareness, you’re going to get better results than those who aren’t.
So what does that mean? To me, and what I want to submit to you is, this gives the aggressive marketer the full advantage. This gives anyone who has the ability to outwork everyone else, the chance to get picked up in media publications, and noticed by a lot of people. It gives the relentless marketing entrepreneur the ability to place their brands in the minds of consumers, at a large scale.
Let’s take this crazy situation for example: I decided, as part of my SEO strategy, to write a couple short press releases on the ever famous PR Log. They were succinct, but thorough. They were short, but detailed, and they catalyzed some curiosity in a reporter for a pretty large Pennsylvania business journal.
A call, some questions and a month later, my company was written about in one of the most prestigious, well known business journals in PA. Awesome!
The amount of recognition I got from that was tremendous. I got a ton of tweets from people saying they read the article, a lot of calls from people needing some of the services I provide, and a great lead on a big project for a worldwide brand.
Did I pay a PR agency to get that result? No, of course not. Everyone’s a journalist now a days. Did I contact that business journal and ask to get included in their next edition? Heck no, I’d get turned down in a heartbeat.
I wrote those articles. I put myself and my company out there, I put in the work and got the results. And so can anyone else, but I think you have to keep in mind that you must have:
A Multifaceted Approach
Can I attribute the inclination of the reporter to write the story about my company solely to those press releases? Were they the single determining factors?
The answer is no. The press releases were only the catalyst. They led the reporter to the robust social media and web content I had constructed and published in the previous months and that was, in my belief, the stronger influence.
So let’s examine that part. As part of my overall social media strategy, I roll out several videos a week on the core of my business right now, which is iPhone repair. We do iPhone repair in New York, Philadelphia, and all surrounding states.
So to reach people in my target market, what better strategy than video? To me, this is the answer. I started rolling out videos every week, sometimes twice a day. I launched video series after video series, started filming videos of stories about how my customer’s iPhones were breaking and I got them to as many people as possible through Twitter, and on the company blog. Here’s a quick clip of the “iGraveyard” video series:
The reporter, after checking out the press releases I put out there, went over to the site (via my link to the site on the press release) to inevitably stumble across the videos and content on the blog.
He found a multitude of video content that just because of the sheer volume, would get anybody to say “woah!”
So, the combination of a small fraction of my SEO strategy (the press releases), a couple video series’ and an everyday execution of noise making in the social media world, landed me a serious article, which carried enormous social proof, and landed me some really awesome ROI.
That article, and the awareness that has spread as a result will most likely continue to bring positive results. The social proof that article has brought is tremendous and I’m quite sure I can ride that wave for a long time.
So what’s the real takeaway here? What’s the gem of information? I’d say, it’s that the world is changing. In fact, the world has changed. Marketing has changed from a “go get” approach, where you become really good at interrupting people (traditional marketing), to a “pull in” strategy, where you have to tap into your creative reserves and create experiences that really mean something to people.
It’s that your results are in many cases going to be commensurate with the amount of hustle you put into it. It’s that excitement, and emotionally stimulating web content is going to influence people to help, promote and use your products and services.
It’s that when Hubspot writes a compelling PDF with real data on the state of inbound marketing, and puts heavy emphasis specifically on the amount of money brands are spending now a days to “pull in” customers through compelling inbound marketing, that we all need to be paying attention to it.
And finally, it’s that we all have an opportunity. We have an opportunity to beat out our competitors, to win the hearts and minds of our potential customers, and to truly make an emotional connection, that promotes both acquisition and retention.