Social Media as a Marketing Tool

Don’t Go Viral for the Wrong Reason; Use Social Media as a Marketing Tool

Social media as a marketing tool is an indispensable component in the modern business arsenal. But if you (or your company) have experimented with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube, you may have found that it’s not so easy to get the attention you’re looking for. Everyone wants to release social content and watch it go viral. Everyone wants to draw in leads and keep clients interested. But not everyone can pull social networking off without hiring experts—in fact, some companies are actually driving business away by misusing social media as a marketing tactic.

social media as a marketing tool

Success on social networks becomes much less of a gamble when social media marketing professionals are involved. Your organization needs to represent itself well on all four major networks—Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter. Each of those networks has its own set of rules to learn and best practices to follow. Anyone can set up accounts and start posting, but there are not just one, but four different learning curves, one per platform, to navigate when getting started in social media as a marketing technique. Do you have time to add that to your workload? Maybe you feel that someone in your company can master all that’s required to launch effective social media campaigns, but what if that person doesn’t deliver quality content?

Public opinion can turn on you in a matter of minutes in social media if it’s done badly, even for huge, famous companies with established and formerly-trusted brands. That’s obviously not the kind of viral representation you want. The old adage that “all publicity is good publicity” might make people feel better after they make mistakes—and indeed, sometimes a public relations snafu can be reworked into an asset. But that outcome is far from universal. Social media professionals can work magic with reputation management, and make a happy ending much more likely after any mistakes your company has made in-house while trying to wield social media as a marketing tactic without understanding it.

Social media can easily be outsourced to experts in a timely, efficient, and cost-effective manner. Do you know how to schedule a week’s work of posts across multiple networks in less than an hour? Much more importantly, do you know what those updates should say in order to draw in leads and make them want to stick around, and keep your current customers engaged and interested in what you have to offer them? Some universities have recently started offering masters’ degrees in social media. That’s a good signifier of how complicated and highly specialized the correct use of social media as a marketing tool has become. For optimal social networking results, hire someone who can get it right the first time.