More Sales Not Conversations: Social Media Needs To Get Real

More Sales Not Conversations: Social Media Needs To Get Real

NEW SOCIAL MEDIA LAW: If they’re not clicking Add to Cart and Purchasing something from your website, you’re plan may not be working. How do we change “activity” into ecommerce?

Do you just love social media? Free, fast, trending, and world-wide. And facebook, wow, what a success story! Don’t you just love facebook?

We’re all talking and nobody is buying. And on facebook they’re not really talking, they’re lurking and playing games. STAT: 1 – 10 facebook users ever LIKE something. Errrr…What? And what percentage of those 10% ever buy anything from a facebook ad or link. Instant Poll Data: at my current work table (1 woman, 2 men, early 2o’s) have clicked on a facebook ad: 1 of 3. Have bought something on facebook: Zero.

So all this social media and we’re not buying. Well, we’re buying somewhere… Amazon’s numbers keep skyrocketing. Coupons and Groupons and Deal Finders are as big, and annoying, as ever. But in the “conversation” of social media there’s not much buy going on.

Okay, so big brands like Pepsi and McDonalds can afford to “brand” online, but most small businesses can’t afford to spend money on anything that does not bring in a dollar-for-x-dollars sales figure. Here’s the difference. When you see McDonald’s ad on Facebook or YouTube for the Big Mac, they are not trying to get you to stop at the next McDonald’s and buy a big mac. And you can’t order a Big Mac on any website you might arrive at when clicking on an ad. But they are doing something. It’s not sales.

McDonald’s wants you to think about Big Macs in general. All the time. When you next get hungry, they want to be there with a nice picture of their best burger. YUM, but not ecommerce.

And what about businesses that don’t do any ecommerce? Even if you LIKED, FOLLOWED, FAVORITED, and FORWARDED their online marketing campaigns, they cannot earn one dollar from a click on their website.

So why is your business not like McDonald’s? And how do you make some sense of the crazy dollars that the media reports are being spent on social media? Does it make sense for your business to divert $1,000 per month of newspaper advertising to start running banner ads on facebook? Probably not.

BUT, does it make sense to spend 10 minutes a day plugging into social media sites and learning what people are really doing online? Yes. And can you divert more like $200 per month from your newspaper ad spend and get more than $200 of additional benefit? CERTAINLY.

The How is a bit harder to explain. But I can give you the framework of EVERY SOCIAL MEDIA CAMPAIGN.

  1. Set a goal that can be accomplished using social media.
  2. Put google analytics in place on your website and take a baseline measurement of your current (pre-social campaign) traffic.
  3. Pick a site or two to run your social experiment (facebook and linkedin, for example)
  4. Put up your ad/campaign/contest/coupon/call-to-action in several versions (called multi-variate testing, or if there’s only 2 versions, A/B testing)
  5. Collect the results. Pick the best idea and build several more variations to test against the winner.
  6. Collect leads and convert  them into sales.

That’s it. Easy, right? The only hard part is the CONTENT. What IS the idea that will engage your audience not only in conversation but put them in buyer’s mind? That’s the content strategy plan. We can look into that a bit later.

John McElhenney

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