Social Media Marketing
Disclaimer: At our digital marketing agency located in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, we are NOT defined as strictly social media marketers. As digital marketers, we deploy social media strategies within broader, integrated digital marketing campaigns, but rarely ever social on its own. Throughout this page, we often reference Social Lite’s Customer Value Journey methodology, which utilizes various digital marketing strategies at the different stages of the customer relationship. Nine times out of 10, social media is a strategy that takes place at the early stages of the customer relationship. If you have the time and interest, we encourage you to first read more about our Customer Value Journey methodology, which is at the heart of every digital marketing campaign we deploy four our clients, and ourselves.
First, what is social media marketing?
You may have an answer, and others will have answers. But I want to paint a picture that strips back the fluff to understand the core intent of social media marketing. Before I paint this picture, let’s first explore our agency’s meaning of marketing.
Marketing versus Communications
Communications professionals and marketers are similar in that both craft, publish and promote messages to specific audiences with an intended response and outcome, or measurable objective.
But what differentiates communications and marketing is that when marketers promote messages to specific audiences, the intended responses and outcome is always, always, always the same — to qualify sales leads and drive revenue.
With communications, your message has an intended goal, which may or may not be sales.
So, when we discuss social media marketing on this page, and as an agency, we only consider how social media can be utilized to compliment and amplify sales revenue. Specifically, how can we attract buyers on tools like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Reddit, YouTube, Twitter, Snapchat, or Tumblr?
The finicky thing about social media, however, is that if you narrow your activity to only sales messages, nobody will care to hear what you have to say.
Your audience doesn't care about your sales pitch
Have you heard of the classic social media strategy book Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook by Gary Vanerchuk? The takeaway is that in order for you to build raving fans on social media who may become buyers, your strategy requires interesting and undeniably engaging content and storytelling. You need to build likability, readership, and community, before your audience will care enough to enter a sales conversation with you.
Back to our definition of marketing tho — if we are social media marketers, and we succeed to build a robust social presence and grow our followers, these ambitions only support our greater marketing goal: to reach and engage target customers and begin sales conversations (Aware stage of the Customer Value Journey).
Note: Later down the customer journey, once you convert new customers through your online marketing efforts, you will again use social media to nurture and re-engage leads and customers, upselling and cross-promoting your products and services to maximize profits (Ascend stage of the Customer Value Journey).
“Any trained chimpanzee can update a Facebook page. Successful digital marketing and revenue growth requires integrated strategy.”
Let's finish this section with an important reminder: if we are using social media as a tool to spread messages and ignite some aimed outcome, but that outcome is NOT a sales goal, then social media in this instance is a Communications function, not a marketing one. Any trained chimpanzee can update a Facebook page, but successful digital marketing and revenue growth requires integrated strategy.