Business owners have an insatiable appetite for learning more about Social Media, especially when it comes to building engaged communities and, even better, generating leads. We are well placed to help businesses learn all about it, and were honoured to be invited to present by the HIA.
On a dark and stormy morning, the HIA gathered 70-odd members for a breakfast menu of 'eggs benny' and digital learning.
Being asked to present for over an hour on branding and social media, under the broader topic of digital marketing, meant putting together a comprehenisve presentation of well over 100 slides of information, guidance, learning and tips on topics including branding, campaigns, social media content, lead generation, website conversion and achieving results with efficient processes.
"2018 has been the year of the event at The Cut, and I was happy and grateful to be approached by the HIA to be key note speaker at this event. Regardless of whether the sector is new home builders, or anything else, SME owners and marketers are always looking for guidance to stay ahead of the curve. We're more than happy to share the knowledge we've been building since 2009 to help people market with more success in digital channels." - Ben De Jonge, Director, The Cut
So, let's take a look at the topics Ben covered.
You can also download the full presentation Right Here.
New Media Vs Old Media
While the channels have definitely changed, our view is that the foundational rules of good communication are just as effective now as they ever were. Get your strategy right, create strong branding, and deliver powerful messages that are relevant to your audicence, and you will win more engagement, whether the media is an old school press ad, or a new school social media campaign. When the foundations are solid, the communications you build upon them will be more effective at engaging with the people you want to reach.
Start With Strategy
For the majority of communications, branding and campaign projects, we start with the strategy. For us, the Communication Strategy is the foundation upon which we build all other communications, campaigns and marketing. In simple terms, the strategy is the plan that defines what we are going to say about your business, in your advertising. Our Communication Strategy process includes client interviews and research and we focus on building clarity and definition around factors including Target Markets, Specialisations, Customer Motivations, Brand Values, Primary Benefits, Competitor Profiles and Key Messages. We also include sections such as The Positioning Script and Elevator Pitch to give clients well defined pitch content that clearly defines their business, what they offer and what sets them apart.
"I find Communication Strategies really rewarding because in most cases they give our clients a new understanding and clarity around their own businesses, and what makes them great, different and unique. As well as being important for the campaigns we develop, it is often re-energising for the people in the business." - Ben De Jonge, Director, The Cut
The advertising campaign is alive and well, it's just that these days, they appear primarily on websites, social media feeds, eDMs and lead generation campaigns. The campaign is the visual concept, combined with the key messages that we know are going to be relevant and engaging to your target market. Without a strong and well defined idea for your campaign, placing advertising in any channel is going to be high risk, and less likely to succeed. The campaign brings your strategy to life, and it's probably the funnest part of the process. For our clients, it delivers a big 'wow' factor as they see their business, brand and services expressed in new ways.
Social & Content Channels
In most cases, we recommend that businesses start with Facebook, and build on that platform. Facebook has the laregst and most engaged communities, as well as the most powerful marketing tools. Plus, they have powerful metrics for measurement, assessment and improvement. We help our clients develop high quality content that is engaging for the people they want to reach. We suggest that businesses publish blogs, post project case studies and send out regular eDM campaigns. These are the channels and assets we consider to be the starting point. From there, we can help businsses build activity and effectiveness with lead generation strategies, content downloads and more sophisticated social campaigns.
Good content is content that helps the people who might be interested in your services. People are hungry for information, so give them good information and be prepared to help them, before you sell to them. Content that helps might be a guide, a check list, a case study or an inspiration piece. Whatever helps the people who are your prospects increase their understanding and answer their questions. Spend some time thinking about your market as people, and the questions they want answers to. When you think of them as people, and not dollar signs, you'll be on your way to thinking up content that can really help them. Engage them with good content, get them liking your business, and then it becomes much easier to turn them into your new customers.
Building communities and achieving engagement is fantastic, and should be the first goals. But for many businesses, they want to generate leads and make sales. Lead generation opportunities are now accessible and effective, using social media and/or landing pages to attract attention, achieve engagement and gather contact details. Take it to the next level with automated campaigns to nurture your new leads and achieve multiple touch points, automatically. The time this saves in the sales process speaks for itself, and often, so do the conversion statistics.
At the end of the day, all digital channels should lead back to your website. This is the online location where you want your prospects to spend most of their time with your brand. When they arrive on your website, you want to convert them. A conversion simply means having them take a defined action. These actions can include downloading content, signing up for a newsletter, sending an enquiry, purchasing a product and so on. There are many things you can do with your website to increase your conversion rate.
These include making the specialisation and value of your business clear on your homepage, directing site visitors to the most important content and action points, using simple language to communicate and using good quality photography to represent your brand and services. When you keep things simple on your website, and give people fewer options, it is more likely that they will make a choice and convert to your action. With too much choice, people tend to get confused and are more likely to choose nothing.
What you see here is a summary of the content we presented to the HIA members. Our presentation received some great feedback from the group and the HIA, and questions were fired on topics ranging from content quality to crediting photos in Instagram.
To download the full presentation, Click Here.
If this content raises questions for you and your business, and you'd like to give more power to your social media and digital marketing, call The Cut anytime. We're always happy to give help to Perth businesses.