They say there are only two certainties in life: death and taxes. In the world of social media marketing, there are two other tried-and-true methods for success that are unlikely to ever change. Mastering these will help you on your path to success.
It’s easy enough to post a message on your social media accounts and potentially reach thousands (if not millions) of followers. But this is hardly a guaranteed path to success for most companies. For every post that goes viral, hundreds of others languish in obscurity. Playing the role of copycat rarely pays off; instead of trying to emulate what some of the bigger and more successful companies are doing, you’re better off paying attention to businesses similar in size and scope to your own.
Plus, “going viral” isn’t an automatic guarantee of success anyway. Consider the following:
- Consumers are most likely to share articles, news and content related to science, but only 9 percent of person-to-person recipients click on shared links concerning these topics.
- Timely news and political items are less widely shared at 2 percent but have higher click rates: 86 percent and 77 percent.
- Only 4 percent share business-related posts, and the click rate is 24 percent.
- Health posts have a 3 percent share and 15 percent click rate.
- Celebrity and entertainment posts have a 2 percent share and 40 percent click rate.
- Consumer reviews of products and businesses attract only a 1 percent share and 4 percent click rate.
- Personal finance posts have a 1 percent share and 11 percent click rate.
The average amounts to 3 percent sharing and 24 percent clicking. Shares are great, but unless those result in high click rates, you won’t see noticeable results. The best way to avoid this is to develop highly targeted lists comprised of thought-leader, market-leader and influential recipients and share high-interest, valuable content designed to enhance the status of the sharer. Short of that, you’ll need to attract a very large audience in order for that 3 percent share rate to pay off.
The bottom line? Social media can be a part of your overall marketing plan, but you need to incorporate it strategically. Likes, views, shares, and viral boosts are nice, but all media—social media is no exception—relies on one thing in order to be successful: money. By all means strive for creativity and opportunity, but always pay attention to the bottom line. Do so, and you’ll have a solid grasp of the power and potential of social media marketing.