I’ve been a little bit obsessed with the successes and failures of Facebook lately—as I’m sure you have, too, dear reader. It’s all so big and confusing…and time consuming. What works? What doesn’t? What are the right metrics? And how on earth do you turn the whole darn thing into revenue at the end of the day? (I’m lucky enough to have a small team of helpers and I’m still trying to figure it all out.)
Luckily, I know Dimple Thakkar. (Yes, her name really is Dimple.) Any-hoo…Dimple runs a kick-ass social media agency, Synhergy Marketing, which has won all kinds of impressive awards for their work. She and I sat down recently and Skyped about the state of affairs in social media land. Hopefully, my questions match some of your questions, too. (If not, just leave a comment below and I’ll get it answered.)
Olga: First of all…
…does Facebook advertising actually work for small businesses?
Dimple: Yes, it does. When used correctly, strategic Facebook advertising is one of the best ways for a small business to reach the masses. There are multiple ways to “do it right,” including using Facebook’s Post an Offer feature; offering a promo code, coupon, or in-store deal; and so on.
Olga: How do you track that?
Dimple: Start by carefully choosing your targets (by geography, gender, etc.). Then, monitor the ad in real time (i.e. your spending versus consumers taking you up on your offers). Finally, measure your reach and the effectiveness of that reach.
Olga: Beyond that, what are some of the most effective ways to translate social media followers into actual sales?
Dimple: Really, there are three steps.
- Before you go to market, ensure that your product is remarkable—both offline and online. You want great social traction? Get a great product.
- Don’t cut corners on your business plan, branding, or eCommerce site. If the back end isn’t solid, the front end won’t be either.
- Don’t put all of the weight on your social media team. Marketing must be part of the process, intricately interwoven with all of your social media efforts.
Olga: That third point can be a real killer. Can you share a time when your social media team had a target on its back?
Dimple: Well, we recently worked with a new client, who shall remain nameless, naturally. We sent them a lot of leads, but for whatever reason, those leads weren’t converting into sales. Part of it was that some of the fans simply couldn’t afford their high-end services. As for the rest of the high-quality clients, the customer service was simply lacking. When we called the office, posing as a lead, we were put on hold for more than five minutes, and then brushed off…without any follow-up. The bottom line is that we can’t send qualified leads without great customer service to back it up.
Olga: So, what’s the “right” way to do social media?
Dimple: It’s not as tricky as you think.
- Care more than your competitors do. Don’t jump online in order to simply generate sales.
- Act like a publisher, rather than a promoter.
- Build and deepen your relationships with your customers. Interact with people and get to know them.
- Offer an amazing experience.
- Be consistent. Don’t just post once a week.
- Don’t put forth an amateur brand.
** The interview with Dimple continues next week—right here! Don’t miss a moment, as Dimple reveals the secrets of engagement, explains how to stay on top of ch-ch-anges, and discusses how to hire a great social media agency. **
So, I’m curious, Changers…which of these things are you killing it at…and which are killing you?