Even businesses that rely on specialized expertise must be prepared to have their reputation judged in the fast-moving social media arena. That doesn’t mean eagerly wading into all the latest celebrity controversies, but using your platform to spread helpful and informative content.
By positioning your brand as a knowledgeable advisor, you set the stage for lasting customer relationships.
Yet, it’s easy to overlook the power of social media marketing. So many of your competitors and colleagues are using it wrong that you may have formed the wrong impression about it. In fact, some businesses leave it to an intern or administrative assistant to handle their social media marketing.
Giving someone a chance to stretch their skills is great – but not at the expense of social media branding.
Social Media Marketing Matters For High-Prestige Businesses
When it comes to social media, many people think, “If you build it, they will come.”
In that mindset, having someone on the job with social media marketing is better than nothing. Unfortunately, it no longer works that way. Getting and holding attention on social media is a challenge. Before you can reap the benefits of consistent, reliable lead generation, you need to overcome two roadblocks:
1. Your Future Followers Are Isolated In “Bubbles”
Social media platforms like Facebook have three goals:
- Sign up more Monthly Active Users (MAUs)
- Discover more information about those users
- Sell that information to advertisers at a profit
All three objectives are served by getting existing users to spend more time in the app. Combining AI with the best psychology and neuroscience, most platforms achieve this by exposing users only to the content they are most likely to respond to. That’s measured with engagement signals like comments and shares.
Brands like yours, which want to entice people to stop scrolling their feed and visit your website, are the enemy.
No surprise, then, that social media companies have generally moved to restrict the number of people who will see your unpaid social media posts – known in the business as organic reach. Organic reach saves money versus social media advertising, but getting into your audience’s “bubble” means creating content they can respond to.
Social media marketing without a clear plan goes nowhere … literally. If you publish a lot of posts that get no engagement, your future posts will be less likely to gain traction, creating a vicious cycle. And social media networks don’t tell you when you’re losing visibility, because they want you to stay logged in and keep posting.
2. The Social Media Feed Never Stops Churning
Social media moves fast – very fast. Your social media marketing needs to maintain the same pace.
The tempo of your social media marketing campaign depends on which platform you use and what specific audience you’re trying to reach. The demands this places on you vary considerably: It might be okay to post just a few times a week on Facebook, but an optimal pace on Twitter can be 6-8 tweets per day.
And for an expertise-based business, any old motivational quote won’t do.
Instead, you need:
- Useful content that communicates your brand’s value and promise
- A targeted schedule that reaches your audience during high activity
- A strategy to monitor social media conversations around your brand
- The ability to respond to customers and others who mention you
Let’s face it: That’s a lot.
While some people might have time to watch social media all day and jump into conversations at will, it can quickly monopolize your schedule. Even if you’re delegating the task to an office employee, he or she no doubt has other duties that are very likely to get pushed aside. Social media can easily consume hours at a stretch.
And without delivering business growth, those are hours wasted!
The Secret Ingredient That Sets Professional Social Media Apart
At this point, you might be wondering why professional social media is so different.
What makes it a difference in kind rather than one of degree?
Like all good digital marketing, social media marketing should be scientific.
Here’s how the Scientific Method applies to social media:
- Hypothesis: You start with an educated guess about what marketing content will be most effective
- Testing: Using best practices, you develop and publish social content according to your hypothesis
- Results: You review the data your content generates, refine your hypothesis, and continue the cycle
Social media marketing professionals understand the ins and outs of the data that arises from every post. They use specialized analytics tools to know precisely how people find your social media posts and what actions they take. This gives them the insights necessary for a truly data-driven approach.
Through continuous improvement, you create more of the content that works and less that doesn’t.
That highlights the biggest problem with asking a non-professional to manage your social media: Once a post flops, they’re more likely to follow it up with more of the same. After all, when all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. Without the right tools, diagnosing why some content doesn’t work is impossible.
That makes it less and less likely you’ll get any results, let alone the kind you really want.
Poor social media strategy can even drag you down by making your brand seem inept, unhelpful, or out of touch. A social media account doesn’t have to be a rank embarrassment to hold back your digital marketing: Simply giving the impression that you don’t know what you’re doing is enough to undermine your efforts.
The antidote to all that is professional social media marketing.
How You Can Help Your Professional Social Media Company Do Better Work For You
Just because you outsource digital marketing, it doesn’t mean you’re stuck in the back seat.
The details may go to others, but business principals should stay involved in the big picture. After all, your clients want to hear from you. In any law firm, the attorney’s voice is the most influential. Likewise, medical practices benefit most from social media when their physicians play an active role.
So, how do you strike the right balance and lift up professional social media from good to great?
Let’s look closer:
1. Understand Your Audience
Part of the value social media professionals bring to the table is a record of success with companies like yours. That said, your observations are indispensable. Be prepared to share your insights on any past events or promotions that worked well, your average customer’s background, and how much they typically spend.
2. Take Center Stage In Video
Video marketing is powerful in any industry, but it is uniquely effective for law firms and medical practices. Even if you’ve never been in front of the camera, don’t let the idea intimidate you. A well-rounded digital marketing company provides the equipment, software, training, and support for excellent social video storytelling.
3. Ask The Hard Questions (Really!)
Gone are the days when marketers could promise you the moon with search engine optimization alone. If you’re starting fresh with digital marketing, for example, a big breakthrough usually takes about three months. Ask every question that matters to you and be sure you get full, satisfying answers from your marketing team.
4. Be Prepared For Regular Updates
True scientific marketing means crunching data. Your social media marketing team should be so well-versed in the numbers that explaining your situation over a cup of coffee is as easy as 1-2-3. Gradual, sustainable growth in your social media following is the norm when everything is working the way it should.
5. Let Your Social Media Team Connect The Dots For You
What is social media really all about? Getting plenty of “likes” on your posts is fun, but real results come when your social media feeds your lead generation engine. That might require adjustments in your content marketing or email marketing list. When it all comes together? Efficient, cost-effective lead generation is a thing of beauty.
6. Step In If You Feel Unsure About A Campaign
Social media should reflect your brand’s voice. Every business has unique traits, especially prestigious ones like law firms and medical practices. If you don’t feel your social media content reflects you, always speak up. There may be some flat notes as the band warms up, but soon your marketers will be playing your symphony.
7. Don’t Hesitate To Make Social Media Posts Yourself
All of this might make it seem like social media is completely hands-off. Do you have to leave it all to the pros? You can save a lot of time by letting the experts build your social media strategy, but that doesn’t mean you’re not a part of it. You should always feel free to make posts when you have something to tell your audience.
8. Remember, Social Media Is A Marathon, Not A Sprint
Digital marketing techniques deepen your customer relationships on different levels. Social media is more intimate than reading your website, while email marketing can be even more personal. Since every lead is on a different conversion journey, consistency in social media is crucial to building those healthy relationships.
9. Join The Meaningful Conversations In Your Industry
Social media’s customer-facing power is only half the reason it’s so compelling. It also serves as a platform to communicate with your industry, the media, and more. When you use it in a measured way to weigh in on the subjects that matter, it can burnish your brand’s reputation for hard-hitting thought leadership.
In Central Florida, The Best Professional Social Media Marketing Is Within Reach
Give the social media intern a break – the cavalry is here to help.
At New York Ave, our team pioneers best practices in social media. We’ve helped businesses from all across Florida generate robust ROI. We can put you on the fast track for a bigger and more engaged social following.
Even if social media has disappointed you in the past, it’s not too late to see what it can do. With the right social media strategy, excellent content, and posting aligned with your customer’s needs, it’s a whole different world.
Contact us today to find out more or get started. We look forward to meeting you soon.