Building a massive following on social media is one of the most effective ways to promote a business and to increase your profits.
In fact, if you get a big enough following on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook, then this can become a money-making venture in its own right.
With thousands of people hanging off your every word and putting stock in everything you say, a big social media channel will allow you to find sponsors for who will pay you to promote their brands and it can even ‘pre-approve’ you for a book deal!
For business owners, this is a fantastic way to let your customers know about new products and services and to that way drive a ton of traffic to your site.
The only problem is that building a social media channel with a massive following is a slow and painstaking process – or at least it is generally perceived that way.
But what if there was a way you could create a massive social media following without dedicating countless hours to it?
The Wrong Way to do Social Media
The key is not to spend less time on social media marketing (volume is hugely important for social media) but instead to change the way you approach it.
What a lot of marketers will do is to spend their day running their business and then to dedicate a few hours in the evening or at another time during their day to posting content to Twitter or Instagram, or to respond to comments and questions.
This not only wastes time but it also results in a lower quality of social media channel as you’ll be scratching your head trying to think of what new thing to post about, rather than posting because you have something interesting and worthwhile to say!
Incidental Social Media
Instead then, try to think of social media as something that you can simply fit into your usual regime and around your regular schedule.
Social media is supposed to offer some insight into your routine for your followers and to let them feel as though they’re getting to know you – this is especially important for a small business or a personal brand.
Likewise, a good business should always be something that you are passionate about and truly interested in, meaning that you should actually live the lifestyle that you are promoting.
This then is how you are going to find things to post about. This is how you are going to keep adding fresh content – simply by sharing the things that you’re doing.
Let’s say you have a health and fitness business. Hopefully, you are living that lifestyle yourself. That means that you can simply post pictures to Instagram showing your workouts and sharing your tips for the gym. Likewise, it means that you can Tweet about the food you’re having, or share the interesting articles you’re reading on Facebook.
Likewise, if your small business is a highstreet store, then why not share pictures of the team working, of new products or of your reflections on running small businesses?
Video is one of the most underutilized aspects of internet marketing. They say that a picture can tell a thousand words, so just think how many words a video must tell!
Not only can you convey more information through a video though, but it will also be more engaging, more emotive and persuasive and much better at quickly grabbing attention.
Video also gives you a lot of new marketing opportunities – allowing you to build a following for a brand through YouTube, to embed a different kind of media on your website, or to grab attention on a sales page by telling people in person why they should buy your product (oh and letting people get to know you is one more benefit of video marketing).
The only problem? Video can be seen as a bit fiddly and complicated compared to a lot of other forms of marketing and this can make it off-putting as a potential time investment.
So the question is: what shortcuts and strategies can you find to make the process of creating marketing videos that much faster and smoother?
A good place to start is with the hardware. By getting the right camera and the right mic etc., you can save yourself a fair amount of work.
A good camera for video marketing, for instance, should be one that has a flip screen so that you can see yourself in the shot before you hit record. It’s extremely frustrating to film a whole video only to learn the top of your head was cut off!
Also useful, is to find a camera that has a microphone jack or a USB for a microphone such as the Blue Yeti Snowball. This will allow you to record crisp audio directly onto your video, rather than having to record the audio separately and then sync it up.
Getting a decent tripod, lighting rig and boom mic stand can all help too, as they allow you to quickly set things up in a way that will produce the best quality footage.
Two more tips: clap at the start and end of each take and double clap when you get it right. This will make it easier to edit your footage (because you can see the spike in the audio).
Secondly, keep a space in your home with a good backdrop and everything set up ready for filming. Then you just need to step into shot and start recording!
A Quicker Way
Don’t want to go on camera?
Find that this all still takes too long?
Then you could consider making videos as slideshows instead! You can actually save PowerPoint presentations as MPEG files and then simply record over them.
This means you now have no need to record yourself and you can make videos much more quickly.
This type of content is perfect for sales pages too and is something that web users have come to expect on such pages, lending your site an air of professionalism.
Over the past few years, it’s become increasingly harder to get people’s attention. On Facebook, in particular, we’ve found that organic reach for pages has dropped over the first six months of 2017. This is partly due to algorithm changes, and partly due to the response from brands trying to increase their exposure, publishing more, and creating more competition for the eyes that are on the news feed.
Facebook groups are a great solution to this decrease in organic reach. They create engagement and community that pages simply can’t. The nature of a Facebook group is far more interactive and multi-dimensional, whereas pages can seem a bit flat and one-sided.
A Facebook group is also a major way to gain traffic to your website. Posts to your page or personal wall will often go unnoticed due to Facebook algorithms, but each member of a group receives a notification if there’s a new post. This drives traffic to the group and can drive traffic to your website when you share a link to your blog. Of course, these types of notifications can be turned off, but if you’re offering great content and personal interaction with your group, it’s likely they won’t be.
There are three main things you can do to ensure your Facebook group starts out on the right foot and attracts the potential customers you’re looking for.
- Be crystal clear on what type of group you want to have. There are three types of Facebook groups in terms of privacy – open, closed, and secret. Open groups are just that – anyone can see who is in the group, anyone can see the posts, and anyone can join. With a closed group, anyone can see the group and who is in it, but only members can view the content in the group. With a secret group, no one but a member of the group can see that the group exists, or see who I in the group and the group posts. In essence, with a secret group, you need an invite to join, or you won’t even know it’s there.
- Once you’re sure what type of Facebook group you want, set up specific criteria for deciding on who gets approved into the group. Figure out who your ideal client is – all the demographics and details – and accept members accordingly. This will increase your group’s integrity and exclusivity.
- Create and adhere to a content calendar for your group. Decide on the questions, polls, photos, and events you’ll be posting about. Have a list of post ideas that you can refer to if you get stuck for content ideas. Have lots of ideas for group participation, and that’ll help increase your engagement within the group.
Creating Your Facebook Group
So you want to create a Facebook group! Great! Let’s get started, and you’ll soon have your Facebook group up and running smoothly, and be able to grow and expand your group and your following.
The first thing you’ll do is log in to your Facebook account. Click the down arrow on the right side of the menu bar at the top, and choose “Create Group.” Enter the necessary information about your group that the page asks for – and remember to use a name that described what your group is about to make it easier for new members to find it when they use the Facebook search function.
At this point, it will help you if you take a moment to add the group to your “favorites.” That way, the group name will show up in your left sidebar near the top, and you’ll have easy access to it without having to search for it each time you want to visit the group or post.
Set your group privacy to “Closed.” This will create a feeling of exclusivity within your group because not just anyone can get in. It will also enable you to monitor who is added to the group, to make sure they’re a good fit. Remember that there are over a billion daily users of Facebook, and it’s a given that some of them are spammers who will try to gain access to your group.
You also want people to have to join the group to see the content – another reason to choose a closed group rather than a public group.
Now, add at least one friend. This is necessary to start your group, so pick a person who you think will be interested and let them know you’re adding them to the group ahead of time. No one likes to be added to groups without their permission, so don’t do that.
Now you can begin customizing your group page by adding a description of the group and adding any rules you have that you want everyone to be aware of. Choose a group icon from those shown, and then find an image that is related to your group’s topic. For free photos to use, you can look at Pixabay.com, where you’ll find thousands of beautiful graphics. You’ll use this image as your group cover photo.
Your group is just about complete! The last thing you need to do is go to “Edit Group Settings” and add a few tags that describe the group content and what it’s all about. This will make finding your group much easier.
Now that your group has been created, you can work on promoting it and gaining members!
When you are trying to build a successful social media page that will help to sell your products and build you a big following, what’s important is to try and ‘sell the dream’.
So what does that mean? It means focusing on you value proposition.
A value proposition meanwhile is the way in which your product or your service can change people’s lives for the better. What is it that people should get from your product if all goes well? The old saying goes that you don’t sell hats, you sell warm heads!
This is to say that people don’t buy hats because they want to wrap fabric around their heads – they buy them for an end goal that will make life a little more comfortable. Your product and your service are more than the sum of their parts.
The Emotional Hook
This is even more important when what you’re selling has an ‘emotional hook’. The ideal example here is the ‘Make Money Ebook’. This is just a PDF with lots of words, which in itself doesn’t offer that much value.
So the value proposition is tied to what those words can do for the person. And of course this means that you’re going to help your readers to become richer.
More than that, you’re going to help them end the stress of debt and you’re going to help them to be more attractive to the opposite sex. They can go on lots of holidays and buy nice watches that make them feel more confident!
That’s the emotional hook and if you were trying to sell the product on a sales page, that’s what you’d focus on.
In social media, you don’t want to be so ‘on the nose’. Instead, your objective will be to focus on the lifestyle that is associated with the product you’re selling and to promote this through your channel.
How to Sell the Lifestyle
So how might you do this? A quick look on Instagram will quickly show you how people are selling fitness products and clothing: they do it by creating a lifestyle and sharing images and videos of themselves working out, or just looking generally attractive in their clothes.
And this helps to gain them followers who want that lifestyle and who want to live vicariously. And it also generates a lot of sales – more effectively than any on-the-nose marketing attempt!
If you’re at all interested in becoming a blogger and quitting your day job, then you should go with that feeling.
Many of us toy with the idea of working online and quitting our jobs but very few have the nerve to set out and actually make it happen. This is a big shame however, as really there’s nothing to lose and everything to gain. In this article, we’ll look at how you can overcome the fear and the apprehension holding you back and dive in to become a blogger.
If you’re afraid of giving up your job to become a blogger, then it’s time to do some fear setting. This is a technique recommended by Tim Ferriss and it’s highly effective when it comes to combating irrational fears.
To begin, you’re going to ask yourself what it is you’re afraid of and then make a list. Is it the thought of not being able to find work if you aren’t successful? Is it the thought that your family might think you’re irresponsible and leave you?
Once you’ve made the list, you’re next going to go down the column and assess every item in terms of how realistic it is. At the same time, you’re going to write down how you’d deal with that problem if it came to pass. Would your partner really leave you because you decided to chase your dreams? Wouldn’t it in fact be easy to walk into another job with your credentials?
More importantly though, recognize that running a blog doesn’t have to mean giving up the day job. Put more time into a blog and it will grow faster but to be honest, you can do perfectly well with an hour a night and some time at the weekends.
If you’re really passionate about your blog, then you should find this doesn’t feel like work either… So why not try fitting your blogging in around your job until it’s bringing in some funds? This way there’s no risk and you’ll have a much better idea of whether you can be successful before you make any giant leaps.
Finally, consider one more fear.
The fear of what happens if you don’t take a chance on blogging.
The fear of being stuck in the same job, day in day out, for the next 20, 30 or 40 years of your life.
Now you decide: which is more scary?