Very. When done properly. Social media can be very effective in generating quality leads. However, it takes planning, preparation, posting, participation, persistence, patience and perseverance. Yes, the 9 P’s of Social Media Marketing!
A mistake that I see many companies make is trying to do it fast, off-the-cuff or trying to take shortcuts. They don’t work!
It’s a marathon, not a sprint!
In the question in the title there are two major keywords:
Effective and Quality
This is what you want. If you attempt to take shortcuts or stop doing what you’re doing because you’re frustrated, it will end up costing you valuable time and money and you won’t get the results you want.
What you need to do to Generate Quality Leads:
- Clearly define your target market(s). Failure to do this will result in drawing visitors to your site who are not at all interested in what you have to offer.
- Research your target. Where are they hanging out online? Which networks do the prefer? What is their buying journey for your product or service? You need to know all this before setting out to conquer the market.
- Create Personas for each target market.
- Have a good WordPress website that showcases what you can do for a potential client, has a clear, call-to-action and a way to capture the leads. Without this, all the social media in the world won’t help you. The idea is to convert visitors into leads, then nurture those leads into sales.
- Then, have some sort of marketing automation drip campaign set up to convert the leads into sales. Clearly, this is because not everyone is ready to buy right away.
- Set SMART goals, develop a strategic plan for each network, then create a tactical plan on how you’re going to implement the strategy.
- Blog at least 2-3 times a week. It’s the fresh relevant content that Google is looking for. Blogging less often than once a week makes your website stagnant and Google will ignore you. Moreover, there are several free tools to automate sharing of content. I can show you how they work.
- Get Social Savvy! Share the posts on social media as well as other people’s relevant content of interest to your target market. You need to search for, follow and connect with your target market. Build a following and relationships. Subsequently, get to know them as they get to know you!
- Monitor and measure. At the end of every month you need to check your social analytics and insights to see what’s working and what’s not working. If you continue to do what’s not working expecting different results, well, that’s the definition of insanity. Make sure you have Google Analytics setup and installed on your website. As a result, it will be easy to track where your visitors are coming from and what they’re doing on your website. Furthermore, it’s free to use.
What about ROI? When do I see the return on investment?
It depends on…..
- How much time you put into it if you’re doing it yourself.
- How much money you invest if you’re hiring someone to do it for you.
- Your industry and how competitive the field is.
- How creative and clever you are.
- What’s important for you to measure? Sales? Growing a list? These are Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
For some businesses, it may take a month; others 3-6 months, before you start seeing results. Don’t expect instant magic to happen. Again it’s a marathon, not a sprint. You’re in it for the long haul, yet social media may very well be the main way you get new business. It’s takes more time up front to plan, create, build and implement. As you get used to the platforms and get data on what’s working and not working, it will take you less time to do what you need to do.
Done right, it works.