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Social media marketing has become very popular among businesses that have brick-and-mortar establishments. Although it has many advantages, it’s important to have realistic expectations. Here what you need to know before starting a social marketing campaign.

From a technical standpoint, here are some of the things that you can do to make social media marketing as effective as possible and some things you should take into account when you launch a social media marketing campaign.

Effectiveness

Surveys have shown that when someone sees a business or product that one of their friends liked on a social media network, about one quarter of those people will actually investigate that product. The number of times people share your service is important, obviously, but it isn’t the be-all end-all of online marketing. Social media networks are set up for people to be social. People may do some investigation into products they see on social media sites and, if they’re particularly loyal to a product, they may “like” it and share it with their friends. Don’t expect immediate huge results from setting up a page on a social media site, however. Be realistic.

Moderation

If you’re using Facebook, go ahead and “Like” a few pages belonging to competitors of yours or businesses you’re interested in on your social media profiles. Pay attention to how they update their status and getting content into your news feed. You’ll quickly discover some tend to post many worthless updates. They might be cute little sayings, silly questions about their products, or other content that only serve to clog people’s news feeds with information they don’t want.

Be moderate with how much you post. Ideally, anything you post should have real value for the people reading it. Also, be aware that people’s news feeds tend to move very quickly. For instance, if someone in your company handles social marketing and makes a Facebook update at 2 PM, by 5 PM, it’s likely to be so far down people’s news feeds, they’ll won’t it by the time they get home. Be sure to study how each social service works so you can learn the optimal times to post, and the types of content that engages readers on social networks.

Tracking Progress

When your business starts using a social media site, be aware it might not be the best venue to advertise your business — even though it might work very well for other types of businesses. There are some easy ways you can track your progress.

First, pay attention to how many people share or comment on your posts. The more the better. You should also pay attention to how much time you’re spending updating each social profile versus how much sales you’re actually getting out of it. Remember, just like any other investment you business makes, you don’t want to direct a great deal of marketing resources into something that isn’t increasing your bottom line.

Secondly, you’ll want to stay on top of what people are saying about your business by monitoring social mentions of your company name, products, and even comments about your competitors. This will allow you to gain important insights about what people actually think about your business, give you a chance to resolve negative comments before they get out of control and, most importantly, engage customers one-on-one.

Conclusion

Social media sites can be great for advertising and promoting your business. They’re particularly good for local businesses. If you’re advertising a business that does its transactions online, however, such as a VPN Service, software provider, or another business, you may have to adjust your strategy to make yourself stand out from the pack. Like everything else on social media networks, it generally work best to post updates that are as relevant as possible to your business.