Social media is an important part of small and medium sized business (SMB) marketing strategies and these organizations should be making sure that content and knowledge come first.
Social media is a cost effective tool that can boast a high return on investment for SMB’s, but many of these businesses still struggle with it.
Ed Abrams is the Vice President of Marketing for Midmarket at IBM. He spoke with CMSWire about this and other issues, and how SMB’s can improve their approach to content marketing and social media.
A Benefit and a Curse
Even though social media is an important part of marketing for all types of business, it is especially useful for those companies that are classified as small or medium. Social media sites, like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest give these businesses a way to improve their brand’s reach by interacting more thoroughly with customers and potential customers in a real-time capacity. Businesses are also instantly able to, among other things, share product and store updates, run contests and promote sales, quickly answer customer concerns and connect with customers outside of a local demographic -- although this is where problems can develop.
According to Abrams many SMB businesses will either create social media accounts and think that’s all they need to do, or don’t know or think about of the type of content they should post before attempting to post it. SMB's need to realize that these steps are just a small part of a long, content focused journey of social engagement, understanding and insight.
It’s [social media] a wonderful vehicle for conversation, but without content for conversation it's useless,” he says. “In content marketing, your point of view and things you care about are absolutely the critical elements that have to be determined before you can think about leveraging social effectively.”
With this in mind, there are a few things that SMB marketers should do before even filling in their company's name on an account sign-up form.
A Multi-Step, Customer Focused Process
Before a SMB can even begin developing a good content and social media strategy they have to understand the role the customer plays.