Commit to Relationship Marketing This Year

Often small businesses owners put a lot of time, attention, and focus on meeting and building relationships with new people. They don’t spend nearly enough of that energy on relationship building or retention with connections they’ve already made. 

If you want to encourage brand loyalty and stay top of mind with your current network, you’ll need a plan for that. While some people are natural connectors, it’s simple to let valuable relationship-building efforts slip through the cracks in the daily hustle of running a company.

Follow-Up Strategy

Wherever you go out and represent your brand in public, it’s likely you will meet people and establish connections. Whether it’s a cold lead, a warm prospect, a member of your target audience, or a potential collaboration partner – it’s essential that you follow up with the people you meet to stay top of mind and begin building that professional relationship. Common follow-up strategies include:

  • Bring a sharpie with you to jot down notes on the back of the business card of the individual.
  • Using a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software to organize your contacts and notes.
  • Create a follow-up schedule and use a spreadsheet or software to keep you on track.
  • Create a sequence of actions that ensures you touch base with each person several times. This could look like an email, a handwritten card, a phone call, or an invitation to another event. 

Building Relationships

People want to be seen and heard. Do your clients know that you ‘get them’ and that you are in their corner – rooting and cheering for them? Honestly, there are probably plenty of companies that provide similar services to yours. This means that building loyalty is important for client retention. 

Do your clients hear from you on a monthly basis via email, zoom meetings, and handwritten notes or gifts? If not, what plan do you have to keep communication open between you and your clients and to nurture the relationship you are building with them? Your marketing and business strategy is essential but so is developing a plan for client retention and nurturing your leads.

Getting to Know People

A one-size-fits-all strategy rarely works as well as business owners would like. Yes, it is simpler and less time-consuming to create a client appreciation or retention strategy for everyone on your list. However, to really make an impact with your people you need to get personal. A personal touch will go much further, and inspire more loyalty, than a non-personalized approach.

One way to personalize your efforts is to uncover your client’s love language. Why? While some people respond well to gifts, other people don’t care anything at all about receiving gifts. The same could be said of the other languages of love including words of affirmation, quality time, or acts of service. While the love languages were designed to improve romantic relationships, it’s not too large of a leap to envision how they can apply to the relationships you are creating and nurturing with your business. To find out more about the five love languages, visit this website.

Looking for a new networking group to meet people and try out your new follow-up plan? Expand your professional network and build authentic connections in a community of like-minded women.  Join us for our WEBOs Lunch and WEBOs After Hours Networking events. Open to all women entrepreneurs and business owners.

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

The Current Pivot to Online Networking

If networking was a part of the marketing strategy for your small business before 2020, you’ve seen big pivots and shifts this past year as connectors scramble to keep meetings happening and maintain their relevance during a pandemic. While it’s true that online networking looks quite a bit different than connecting in-person, months of testing, creative ideas, and innovation from caring and charismatic leaders have shown us that not only do online events work – but they have their own benefits and rewards. 

Finding the Right Networking Group

If you haven’t dipped a toe into networking yet, now is a great time to start. What better way to try out new groups than from the convenience of your computer or smartphone? We encourage networkers – old and new – to visit a variety of groups that are hosting online events to see what synergies may develop. 

Follow-Up Strategy

Just like with in-person networking, it’s more effective to have a follow-up strategy devised before you attend any new meetings to ensure that you are maximizing the connections you make online and nurturing those leads into actual relationships. Make it a point to set one-to-one appointments during these meetings with both potential collaborative partners AND any individuals that fit your ideal client avatar. A goal of even one meeting with someone new can lead to great things. Having a plan and being consistent are the keys to a successful follow-up strategy.

Make Connection Easy

Everyone is busy. Make connecting with new leads and partners easy by setting up a process for future connection. Create a Zoom account and offer to host a get to know each other meeting. Make it easy for them to schedule by setting up an online scheduling tool. 

Our advice is that you make the focus of that first one-to-one meeting relationship building, collaboration, asking deeper questions, and getting to know one another. Save the sales pitch to use after a relationship has been established and nurtured (unless they ask the right questions, of course!). The goal is to make new connections, establish yourself as an authority in your field, and explore opportunities that benefit everyone.

Looking for new groups? WEBO Network provides Professional Development Trainings, Masterminds and connection building opportunities on a regular basis, in a safe, virtual environment. I’m proud to lead the Southeast Denver chapter and would love the opportunity to introduce us to some fantastic women entrepreneurs and business owners!

Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

Social Media Goal Setting in a Pandemic

Last year was a 12-month period like most of us have never experienced before. It felt like a roller coaster of emotions and decision-making felt treacherous and overwhelming. If you struggled to figure out how to make the most out of your social media marketing in 2020, you certainly weren’t alone. 

However, the light is beginning to dawn again and it’s time to sort out your goals for social media marketing in 2021. Here are our best tips for both short-term and long-term goals to propel you into success this year.

Short-term Goals

Consistency

Many business owners fell off the wagon in terms of consistency in 2020. Unsure what to post and often concerned about posting the wrong thing, showing up consistently on social media got pushed to the back burner. Well, it’s a new year and it’s time to put yourself back out there! People won’t find you if you aren’t showing up and consistency is what gains attention and earns the trust of your audience.

Social Advertising

One of the things that happened during the pandemic is that people spent more time online and on social media than ever before. If you haven’t put together an ad strategy for your chosen social media platforms, now is a great time to start. Ads can deliver decent results with smaller package offers and this could be a smart entry point for your business and help you get warmed up to the idea of investing in social media advertising.

Robust Profile Optimizations

Now is the time to revamp your social media channels to get found by your people so you can make a bigger impact with your work. Every word matters. We help small businesses, like yours, maximize the potential of their social media profiles. A great profile, with the right keywords, will help your business get found and will convert your audience from followers to customers.

Long-term Goals

Relationship Building

What are you doing to nurture your existing relationships and build new ones? The pandemic made it more difficult to connect with people but humans are innovative and inventive. Networking went virtual in a big way in 2020 so there’s no excuse to not make the time to connect with the people in your professional network and start establishing new relationships. Looking for a new networking group in the Southeast Denver area that hasn’t closed up shop during the pandemic? Check out the Southeast Denver Chapter of Webo Network.

Conversation & Social Engagement

Social media was always meant to be social but too many small business owners post content and then walk away. If you are truly trying to build relationships on social, you’ll need to spend time engaging with conversations and starting many of your own. Your community can tell whether or not you are there for them online and they’ll only be there for you if you show up first.

Are you ready to hit the grounding running with social media this year? The pandemic may have set your business back but this isn’t a hurdle that you can’t bounce back from. Book a session with us to find out about our Robust Profile Optimizations for your social media profiles or to get support on becoming more consistent on social media this year!


Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.

Top Tips to Keep Your Social Media Content Relevant to Your Audience

If you haven’t gotten on social media to promote your business yet, it’s not too late to start. Did you set up a profile once but have since abandoned it because you found the whole process overwhelming or didn’t achieve the immediate response you expected? 

Like anything worth doing, staying relevant on social media takes work. It’s nice to have a place where you can connect with your target audience in real-time, but that doesn’t mean they’ll be easy to find right out of the gate. There are right, and wrong, ways to use social media for a business and we’ve seen it all!

Here are our top tips for staying relevant on social media as a business: 

Creating Original Content for Your Brand

Anytime you update your website, create marketing materials, or post on social media – you are creating content. Content Marketing is a broad term describing any copy, design, or video elements you create for your brand and then share with your audience. Much of content marketing happens online via a company’s website and social media channels. 

What tends to happen with small businesses, or businesses new to social media, is that they spend the bulk of their time sharing content that other people have created. The idea behind this strategy is to have a consistent presence on social, but it doesn’t work well because you are not actually making an impact with your audience in regards to your own business or brand. Often you are sending your audience away – to some other brand creator’s social media account. 

“To positively impact your audience and your bottom line, your content must be tied to your business.” Christina Perricone, Hubspot

This means that you have to invest time, energy, and money into creating original content around what you do, why you do it, and who you do it for. What’s the point of following you on social media if you have nothing original or interesting to say? 

To stay relevant on social, you need to be sharing informational, inspirational, educational, or entertaining posts, images, audio, and video to earn the attention and trust you need to convert your followers into customers.

How to Stay Relevant on Social Media

After 15 years in the social media marketing space, my team has noticed definite trends in what does (and doesn’t) work well when it comes to social marketing. 

If you want to stay relevant on social as a brand, here’s what you need to avoid:

  • Posting content that directs people away from your channel or website.
  • Focusing too much on sales and not enough on relationship-building.
  • Not having a clear call to action.
  • Neglecting to share your brand stories.
  • Only posting when inspiration strikes instead of being consistent.
  • Not paying attention to current events and ensuring your content is not insensitive. 
  • Not being responsive to people who engage with your posts.
  • Posting text only posts on visual platforms.
  • Not taking advantage of hashtags. 
  • Posting content that is overly personal OR posting content that is completely impersonal (this requires a somewhere-in-the-middle approach).
  • Trying to be everywhere all at once. 
  • Speed through setting up your social media profile(s).

While that’s not a comprehensive list, it does cover most of the basics. To stay relevant, focus on the exact opposite when it comes to sharing content:

  • Invest in creating original content about and for your business.
  • Follow the 80/20 rule of posting only 20% promotional or sales content and 80% content that is entertaining, educational, informational, or inspirational.
  • Let your audience know what you want them to do next. Don’t leave the next move up to their imaginations.
  • Know your brand stories and get comfortable sharing them in creative ways to help your audience get to know, like, and trust you.
  • Build an editorial calendar to help you stay consistent when posting on social media.
  • When something big happens in the world, double-check that the content you have created and scheduled isn’t insensitive or untimely.
  • Create time to engage with people on your chosen social media platforms and respond to those who have taken the time to engage with you. People can tell if you are simply posting and walking away. Social media is meant to be social.
  • We highly recommend using attention-grabbing visuals and video in your social media strategy.
  • Learn to love hashtags – what they are, how they are used, and how they can help your content get found!
  • You want to establish a connection with your audience by being the real, authentic you but remember that being too personal, too early is actually a turn-off for people. Keep your eye on sharing content about your brand and establishing relationships with folks.
  • No one can be a master at all the social media platforms at once. Pick 1 or 2 that you like using and start there.
  • Take advantage of all the characters and space a social media platform gives you on your profile pages. A robust profile will often convert strangers into followers and followers into customers – plus those added keywords help you get found!

Does this mean that you have to do everything yourself to stay relevant on social media? Of course not! You can absolutely hire an experienced social media manager to help you establish a social media strategy, create original content, and stay consistent on your channels. However, understanding how this works will help you stay relevant and on top of your own social media marketing success.

When to Shift Your Message

It seems like there’s a new fire to put out every week anymore, but that’s no reason to check-out. This is especially true if you have a social media presence for your business. It only takes one big news story to change your content from being humorous to being offensive and brands don’t always see it coming. 

It helps if a business understands their BIG vision for their work and the impact they want to make in the world. This process gives a small business owner a compass for decision-making. It helps for that founder, and their audience, to know right away where the company stands on any particular topic. 

Since most social media crises happen out of the blue, it’s important to establish a social media crisis response plan for your business. Create a social media policy, make certain your accounts are secure with strong passwords and an authentication process, and don’t be afraid to pause your scheduled posts to ride out a potentially-damaging wave, if something troublesome arises.

When You Need Support

Every social media platform is searchable. Do you have the right keywords and information on your profiles? Is your messaging current? Did you take advantage of all the space available so that it’s easier for your audience to find you and resonate with what you do? 

Now is the time to revamp your social media channels to get found by your people so you can make a bigger impact with your work. Every word matters. We help small businesses, like yours, maximize the potential of their profiles. Book a session with us to find out about our Robust Profile Optimizations for social media!


Be sure to Follow us and Let’s Engage!

Hollie Clere of The Social Media Advisor is a “#BeAwesome” Developer, Social Media, Brand Builder, Content Manager, Trainer and Author in LinkedInFacebookTwitterBlogGoogle+YouTubePinterestInstagram, and the tools to manage them.

Click here for Social Media TrainingSpeaking and Strategy Consultations.


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