Sunday, October 14, 2012



To know how much muscle you’ll need to put behind your social media marketing, you need to gauge how you stack upagainst your competitors. Time to perform a social media competitive analysis! First, grab your list of competitors -- ha, like you even have to write them down. Then visit the following social media sites to determine if your competitors have a presence:

There may be other social media sites that are important to you -- Google+, Quora, or YouTube, for example. If so, youshould certainly perform an audit on those sites, too. But we’re going to focus on the sites that marketers are utilizingthe most, and have the most questions around in this ebook.
For each social network, you’ll want to note a few key pieces of intel:
Number of fans/followers
Frequency of posting
What kind of content is published (videos, images, blog posts, data, jokes, polls)
How much content is their’s, versus how much is sourced
Fan engagement

You should also browse their homepage and other main pages of their website (particularly their blog!) for social media follow and share buttons to determine how seriously they take social media marketing. Revisit these metrics on a monthly basis to see whether they are making progress, stagnating, or falling behind. Remember, social media requires upkeep, and not every brand is cut out to be a social media marketer for the long haul.

Now you know where you stand, which means you know how far you have to go. And when you revisit these metrics every month, it’ll feel good to watch your number creep up faster and faster, until one day ... you overtake your competitors completely!


Now that you’re revved up to crush your competition, you have to get really, really active on social media to grow your reach. And being active on social media means you need one thing: tons of content. No, content isn’t just a tweet or a Facebook post, either; to make your social media activities actually impact your business’ bottom line, you need to create lead generation content that lives on your website.

No, you need lots of content, and you need it fast. It’s time to make lemonade out of lemons, people,
which means we don’t start from scratch. Let’s dig content out of the deepest, darkest recesses of your website, and spin it into social media-ready content in a flash! Let’s get started with how you can whip up some blog posts quickly to feed your social media presence:

Reach out to guest bloggers -- they’ll create your content for you!
Curate content -- round up the best blog posts, data points, info graphics, etc. on various subject matters. Jot down the answer to a common question -- people love a good FAQ.
Publish excerpts from existing content, like ebooks and white papers.
Conduct a quick interview -- either on video or via email -- and let your subject matter expertise blow your audience away for you.

If you’re already an avid blogger, you should also have an arsenal of blog posts at your disposal that you can republish. Only republish your evergreen content -- the content that withstands the test of time. Perform a quick audit of every old blog post that you plan to promote via social media to ensure they all have relevant, up-to-date calls-to-action. Remember, if your social media traffic doesn’t convert into a lead, it isn’t helping your business’ bottom line.

Speaking of lead generation, you’re going to want to publish offer content to social media to get more bang for your buck. Here’s some quick offer content you can churn out in a flash to feel your social presence:

Create a blog bundle -- a kit of sorts that compiles blog posts about one particular subject.
Do a data compilation of all the critical data points someone in your industry might need to know.
Repurpose your presentations -- Power Points can easily be converted into downloadable PDFs!
Relaunch an old offer; just be sure to update anything that’s out of date.
Record an interview or debate -- all you need is a video camera and 15 minutes of two people’s time!
Create templates and checklists -- these require very little writing, too!
Reach out to partners to create co-branded content that eases the content creation burden.

Finally, you’ll need some visual content to keep your social media presence going strong -- particularly on Facebook and Pinterest. Social media fans and followers adore visual content, which means your engagement will soar when you publish it. And more engagement means wider reach -- just what you need to crush your competitors! Take time to curate and create visual content; here are some quick ways:

Create memes -- you can do it quickly on
Publish infographics -- your own, or others
Publish a chart or graph with data your fans and followers would care about.
Insert an interesting data point into a visual -- simply overlay the data in big, bold text over a relevant image.
Find cartoons about your industry -- people love a laugh.
Take behind-the-scenes pictures of your employees, customers, and office happenings.
Share videos, like case studies, interviews, and quick tips and how-to content.
Now that you have more content than you know what to do with, it’s time to use it to drive some serious social media results.


If you’re going to slay your competitors on social media, you need to figure out what kind of content works best for eachsocial network so no efforts are wasted.


The best content to publish on Twitter is, obviously, short and sweet. Whatever piece of content you’re linking to in the tweet, find the most compelling part of the story to include in your tweet copy. Pulling a shocking data point from your blog post, for example, is more likely to entice followers to retweet your content and click the link in your tweet than the title of your blog post.


Unsurprisingly, you’ll want to post all that visual content you spent time creating on Pinterest. Pinterest users value quality images, so everything you post should look beautiful to get the most repins and followers. And of course, the descriptions should include a link back to your website to turn that traffic into leads. Try to create boards that are both directly and indirectly related to your brand -- HubSpot, for example, has boards with marketing infographics, and boards that are just
images of fun orange things.


LinkedIn users have a longer attention span that people on other social networks -- they’re there to do something impactful for their businesses or careers. You should feel comfortable crafting more text-heave status updates, posting more long form lead generation content, and speaking in a more promotional tone about your products and services.


Facebook should lead heavily towards visual content, but should always be accompanied by explanatory text to give the visuals context. Visual content has higher engagement on Facebook, and the more engagement your content has, the more positively Facebook’s EdgeRank Algorithm will favor your posts -- thus expanding your reach! You can also be much more personal with the content you post to Facebook, since it’s where people go to chat with friends ...not coworkers.

4. Quick Wins

To overtake your competitors on social media, you’ll need some tricks up your sleeve that let you squeeze every last ounce of ROI out of your efforts. And to do that, you need to approach your social media marketing with data-backed tips that we’ve uncovered as a result of a lot of social media stalking. Here are the sneaky little tricks that most people don’t know about, but will make your social media efforts far more fruitful (and with no extra effort required!)

Quick Wins on Pinterest

Descriptions about 200 characters long are repinned the most.
Find content spins around words like “quotes,” “products,” “DIY,” “inspiration,” “books,” and “ideas.” These words are the most frequently pinned on Pinterest. Content that is liked gets repinned more often than content with lots of comments -- so replicate your content that gets liked!
Make your images tall! Taller images get more repins.


You need to be able to execute all of these social media activities fast, which means you should leverage the power of technology to make you ultra-efficient. You should utilize the following to make social media marketing just a blip on your marketing radar:

Social Media Calendar
Social Media Scheduling Tool
Social Media Monitoring Tool

First, set aside one day a week -- let’s say Friday afternoon -- to craft all of your social media content for the next 7 days. You should take that content arsenal of yours, and select a mix of the blog posts, lead generation offers, and visual content you’d like to post on each social network. Then craft a tweet or update to go along with each piece of content, and denote what day and time that piece of social media content will be posted. This is your social media calendar!

Once you have your weekly calendar created, it’s time to automate the publishing process as much as possible. Use a third-party application to input the content you’ve laid out in your calendar, and schedule the updates to publish automatically.

Finally, set up a monitoring system that lets you go about your daily marketing activities with little interruption from social media. Set up keywords for which you’d like to be pinged -- mentions of your product, for example, so you can jump on a sales opportunity. Otherwise, check in on each network every couple hours to engage with fans and followers, and address any problems that arise.


To squeeze even more juice out of your social media marketing, you need to leverage the power of other marketing channels.

Integrating Social Media and Email

Use your email marketing to increase your social media following by adding social media follow/subscription buttons (e.g. ‘Follow Us on Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn/Google+!’) so you can touch potential customers through social channels. You should also add social media sharing buttons (i.e. ‘Share on Facebook!’ ‘Tweet This!’ ‘Share on LinkedIn’) to every email you send so recipients are encouraged to share your email content with their personal networks.

Integrating Social Media and Blogging

Make sure every blog post you publish includes social media sharing buttons so readers can easily share your content with their social networks. In addition, feature social media follow buttons on your blog so readers can easily follow your social media accounts. You should also monitor which blog content performs best so those posts get the social media face time they deserve.

Don't forget to subscribe to my blog!

No comments:

Post a Comment