Getting a Social Media Marketing Campaign Started

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Most business owners are now understanding the importance of having a social media marketing campaign.  It is well known that social media such as Facebook and Twitter can be  powerful tools in the interaction and feedback with clients and customers.  But developing a social media marketing campaign and managing it can be a difficult task.  So I decided to put together a list of some very powerful tools that may streamline the process and save  time.

Listening

One of the first and most important steps is listening.  For starters, social media runs in real time, so with the right tools, you can discover conversations about your company and join them as they are developing.  A great tool for monitoring conversations about your brand  is TweetDeck.

TweetDeck

TweetDeck is your personal browser for staying in touch with what’s happening now, connecting you with your contacts across Twitter, Facebook and more.  TweetDeck is a free desktop application and also offers an iPhone application.

One other exciting tool that I have recently discovered is Google Alerts.  Google Alerts monitors millions of blogs and news websites.  You enter  your choice of keywords such as your company name, and Google will email you with the  latest index results of the term.

Publishing Your Content

Its time to be heard!  Remember to provide value, not just push your company or product.  For others to want to listen, you must be a contributor of knowledge.  And you are well aware that knowledge takes time to contribute.  So to help manage your time, you need powerful tools.  Here are a couple of tools that are easy to adopt, and will automate your social network efforts.

Seesmic Desktop is a free application that will make posting to Twitter and Facebook seamless.  All your tools for image uploading and link shortening are built in.  You can also manage multiple accounts, which is a great feature that other programs do not have.  You may set up keyword searches to help find conversations about your company or related products.

Seesmic Desktop

If you are looking to get the most bang for your buck, when speaking of time, take a look at Ping.fm.  It is a free web based service that will post a single message to literally all of your social networks.  Open a free account, set all of your networks up using the dashboard tools, and it will be the only place you need to go when you are posting messages.

Grade and Measure

For all of this extra work you are doing, you want to see results!   Results do not always come quickly, and they might not always come in a quick sell or thousands of hits to your site each day.  Maybe at first you see an extra 50 hits per week.  If you can find out why those 50 people decided to visit  your site, or where they came from, that information would prove to be very helpful in what messages or social networks you would focus on the next week.  So how do you track and measure results?

First and foremost, Google Analytics.  You need a method to track hits to your website, and Google provides a free and very comprehensive toolset.  After you have your base website traffic tracker installed, set up weekly reports and have them emailed to you as pdf’s.  Then experiment with your messages on the social networks and see what drives traffic back to your site.

Hubspot also offers a multitude of analytical tools.  I have discussed the website grader in previous post, but here is where you can utilize Hubspots social tools.  They offer a tool to grade your Twitter account, Facebook account, your blog and your press releases.

Conclusion

A social media marketing campaign can be a difficult task to undertake, but may also be  very rewarding if you stick with it.   Having the right tools can make the difference between a successful campaign, or a failure.  If you think a social media marketing campaign would help your business, but you don’t want to manage it yourself, we offer a very affordable monthly management plan.  You can learn more here.

If you are starting a campaign yourself and have questions, please comment below and I would be happy to give my best advice.  On the other hand, if you have been managing a campaign and have a tool that was not mentioned here, please share with us.

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