In ‘Alice in Wonderland’, Lewis Carroll wrote,
“If you don’t know where you want to be, it hardly matters which direction you take.”
Once you’ve had a taste “first hand experience” with social media and have an understanding how this new media channel can be used to promote your agency, the next step is to develop a “simple” plan of action. One that can be maintained when your agency is at its busiest.
At the core of every good new business program there’s a good plan. Along with the plan, having a person who pulls everything together. Building a Social Media Marketing plan and determine what the objective of the campaign is and therefore what tools should be utilized and how.
A helpful resource to get you started is the POST Method. POST is one of the most effective acronyms since the four P’s of marketing. It’s a four-step approach that helps marketers define a social media marketing plan for their business and/or clients.
The POST method is the heart and soul of the book, Groundswell, written by Forrestter Research analysts, Charlene Li and Josh Bernoffand. It is highlighted in Josh Bernoff’s Groundswell blog post, The POST Method: A systematic approach to social strategy. The POST Method serves as a guide to help you determine the right strategy for the right audience.
Your purpose should dictate strategy and the tactics used for reaching desired goals. A few common outcomes for your social media marketing efforts should include:
- Gain insight into your target audience – You can use all the qualitative data you want, but some of the most interesting and helpful market research can be found within the social communities where your prospective clients interact, share information and make recommendations.
- Link building for traffic and SEO – According to Marketing Sherpa, 80-90% of business to business transactions begin with a search on the web. Creating linkbait and promoting it to social media news and bookmarking sites can attract a slew of links from bloggers that read them. Creating value for the community is not the only rule, creating value and behaving according to formal and unwritten rules is what sustains social media sourced link building.
- Build brand visibility and authority – As you participate in social media pay close attention to the interests and needs of your prospective clients. I’ve often said that social media “teaches” agencies the way they should have been doing new business all along. Leading with benefits that are of importance to your prospective clients, not with agency credentials and capabilities. Not only will social media teach you to do new business the right way, it is also the best “branding tool” that I’ve ever used in creating an appealing, differentiating position for agencies.
I recommend using social media as a central component for your agency’s new business program. It helps agencies create a more clearly defined focus and differentiating business strategy that will give them a competitive advantage for new business, a higher-profile reputation, and an improved ability to attract and win the clients they really want.
Additional articles that may be of interest:
- Through Social Media an Ad Agency Drives a Stake in the Ground
- “Social Media ‘Teaches’ Ad Agencies to Promote Themselves the Right Way”
- Four Ways Social Media is Changing Advertising Agencies New Business
- Ad agency having explosive new business growth by leading with social media