Social media is a digital marketing tool to enable you to attract and nurture your potential clients. If done well it will promote your brand, expand your reach, increase your following and will enable you to stay front of mind with your prospects.
If done poorly it can damage your brand, make you look unprofessional and ruin relationships with prospects, clients, partners and your friends.
On the plus side, it is just a tool. And when you start to understand that it is just a tool, you can learn how to use it in a positive way.
Back in 2009/2010, whilst I was living in Wiltshire, I became known as the Social Media Queen. It was just at the start of when social media became a mainstream tool to be used by businesses, but no one knew how to use it properly. I quickly tried and tested a lot of ideas, and have continued to test and measure what works and what doesn’t.
What I am going to share with you today encompasses my learnings from the past 8 years of using social media for our company and our clients. It isn’t about complicated Facebook advertising, or going live on social media. It is about how to approach social media so that you attract clients, build your reputation and reap the rewards of your efforts.
Let’s dive on in.
1) Dedicate Time To Understand And Learn How It Actually Works.
There are hundreds of social media tips online. Whether you want free advice or to pay for a training programme, you will be overwhelmed with the options available to you. It is important that you approach social media armed with knowledge and strategies for your industry. Whether you choose to implement your social media management yourself, or outsource it, the information you glean will enable you to make educated decisions when planning a strategy.
Which leads nicely on to point two:
2) Have A Social Media Strategy.
A few social media updates that link back to your website “about page”, or a blog that holds the same information as other people in your industry, will not differentiate you in the market place, nor position you as a trusted advisor.
At first a strategy may be overwhelming, but if you have articles/blogs and information that is based around the pains that your ideal client is going through, you will cut through bland and uninspiring social media updates, and attract your ideal client. The information you share cannot just be throwing random mud, but part of your complete content marketing strategy.
3) Listen To Your Clients And Prospects.
The only way you are going to know what people want to see coming from your firm is to ask them and listen to the feedback that they give you. More people are going to use social media to give feedback on your services than the telephone. If you are constantly being referred prospects via social media platforms then you know you are delivering a good service. If you are writing blogs that are getting shared online then you know you are providing relevant information. If people are reaching out wanting more information from you, you know you are building your brand.
Conversely the opposite is true. If your social media is fruitless then you need to look at your strategy and the feedback you are receiving.
However, you need to test and measure for at least 3-6 months before you will have a true reflection on what is working and what is not.
4) Engage With Your Audience.
It is almost easy to fill up your social media with automated posts that go out throughout the day. What is not so easy is to turn up every day on your social media platforms to ENGAGE with your followers.
Engaging with your followers enables you to uncover their pains or issues they may be experiencing; you can answer their questions and support them online. Engaging with your audience is the first step to starting a relationship… a two-way conversation that will end in a specific measureable outcome.
Do note, social media isn’t just about getting clients. It can be about attracting opportunities that can include speaking opportunities, joint venture opportunities, and friendships and support. As your firm grows you will also want to attract key staff – social media will make recruitment more fruitful for your firm too.
5) Don’t Be A Jack Of All Media.
It is nearly impossible to be on every social media platform. The key to your social media success is to be on the main social media platform that your ideal client hangs out on, and then maybe one/two more to ensure you are visible as much as possible.
If you try and have a strong presence on every platform you will very quickly get frustrated at the time you are investing, and because you are spreading yourself thin you will not have a positive ROI and more than likely give up.
If you decide not to outsource your social media you will find that it can quickly take up much of your time, and time costs money. If you imagine that one social media platform takes approximately 30mins – 1 hour of your time a day, you can see how that can eat into your valuable working day.
If you spend less than this time on your social media accounts the chances are you are just posting and running and not building relationships.
How can you minimise your time on social media? You have two options:
- Outsource much of it.
- Do it badly.
Time costs money. Don’t try and be a jack of all media.
6) Give It Time.
As I mentioned in point one – social media is just a tool. Your social media will be effective if you have the right content and strategy in place to make these tools work for your firm. In almost all my blogs you will see me refer to the Persona Buying Cycle and the Customer Buying Pyramid. Both of these images outline why you need to see marketing as a long game.
You need share content online that is relevant to where your ideal client is at in the buying cycle, and you need to understand that people take time to make a decision, and even more time to have the gumption to reach out and ask you for your help.
Whilst you might feel that your social media presence is like a scene from the desert with tumbleweed slowly tumbling across it, the truth is that there are prospects watching your every move and never showing their faces.
Each social media post you share, each blog you educate your buyers with, each comment you reply to, each message you send, builds on a relationship with your prospects that you are not even aware you are building.
Until one day you ask your new clients “Where did you hear about us?”.
And they reply “I have been following you on social media for about 10 months, and now I need your help”.
To download our ebook and get a list of 100 marketing ideas for your accounting practice click here for the 100 Ways To Market Your Accounting Firm
What do we do at TwentyTwo?
At TwentyTwo Agency we specialise in helping you create a strategy, attract ideal prospects, convert them into clients and get remembered and referred. Our specialities include content marketing, blog writing, email newsletter management and social media management. We are a content marketing and digital experience agency for accounting firms. We ensure you get remembered, recommended and referred.
To find out if we can help you, reach out to our team by emailing [email protected]