Why You Need A Social Media & Content Marketing Strategy Now!

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The evolution of consumer behavior online has created tremendous opportunities to build strong, valued relationships with consumers via social media and content marketing. As this trend continues, so do the opportunities in monetizing various platforms and apps, and using them as viable channels to drive lead and demand generation.

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Because of it’s evolutionary nature, its imperative to your business’s overall growth that you remain flexible and on top of the latest changes and trends. Failure to acknowledge, prepare and respond to shifts in social and content marketing will place your company at risk of eventual irrelevance in the mind of the consumer. In a classic example of David and Goliath, your size will become either your greatest strength or biggest weakness. It’s up to you.

Understand Where Your Market Is

To a great extent, much of the online marketing of your products and services takes place prior to a customer ever landing on your website or making a call. In fact much of it takes place on sites you have no control over. This trend has grown quickly and it’s critical to your success that you understand and respond to it. If you only play in your own sandbox, chances are you’ll soon be playing alone. The saying, “fish where the fish are” has never been more true. You need to identify where your potential customers are and become a valued content contributor and part of the conversation that is taking place.

Humanize Your Digital Brand

Online marketing is about engagement and how you control your message and brand in the online space. Its becoming less and less about business and company websites and more about how and where you contribute, interact and participate as a personal part of that brand. Consumers are flocking to businesses that have humanized their brand and created valued relationships through social media and the distribution of valued content.

You Need To Take Part in the Decision Making Process

You must make the effort to interact with consumers in your niche at all stages of the decision-making and purchasing process. Whether a consumer begins the process by asking a question on a forum, posting on Twitter or Facebook, or by simply searching for product-related information and reviews, you need to be there. But don’t be “salesy”- be a valued partner and friend – again humanize your brand. This will make the transition from conversation and content to conversion seamless.

Create a Brand That Sparks Conversations

Social networking and the exchange of information online, outside of the brand space will only continue to increase. As brand messaging becomes less and less about what companies say about themselves and more and more about what others say about them, it will become increasingly important  to think beyond your company’s core products and services.  Look for ways to drive value and conversation through the creation and distribution of quality content. Become a resource and thought leader in your niche or industry. The rules of marketing are changing and those embrace the changes now will be the leaders tomorrow.

If your business has not yet implemented a social and content marketing strategy – stay tuned, I’ll cover the steps to creating a rock-solid digital marketing strategy in future posts.

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Martin Jones
Martin Jones is Social Media Marketing Manager with the corporate Cox Communications social media team where he assists in leading strategy, campaign ideation and marketing execution across each of the company’s social media platforms. Today, over 500k fans engage with Cox Communications content, campaigns and Customer Care on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, You Tube and Google+. His career has been characterized by his ability to work with groups, individuals and businesses to uncover, optimize and implement digital marketing strategies and tactics that propel them past their competition. Thoughts expressed here are his own.
Martin Jones

@martinjonesaz

Writer, Speaker, Digital Marketing Strategist. Editor http://t.co/a358HUfVWC - Sr. Mgr.#contentmarketing & #socialmedia @ Cox Communications - Host #IgniteChat
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Martin Jones
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Comments

  1. Martin, what I like to call the pizza pie of marketing is getting bigger and bigger. Clients often ask me if social media will take the place of another "piece" of their marketing "pie". My answer is always the same, no…you can't just replace a slice in the pie, you have to make the pie bigger and make room for the SoMe slice. In my mind a solid social media strategy works hand in hand with other slices in the marketing pizza pie.
    You have some great info here and I am anxious to read your follow up pieces.

  2. I like the point of humanizing the digital brand. There are so many computers taking people positions that it's nice to have a site, brand, even company that is personalized to people. Great post!

  3. martinjonesaz says:

    Thanks – I think that as time goes on, those who are most successful in content and social marketing will be the one that "get" this important aspect. Humanizing the brand, is in mind, critical.

  4. I believe that in the near feature – especially in the relatively small businesses – the brand it the person selling a product, not the product by itself. That's one of the reasons small businesses brand 'their face' on twitter and other social media platforms…

  5. 2013 is looking like a very competitive climate for content marketing as 2012 saw its growth from traditional marketing practitioners getting into the act. Social media is my primary platform for broadcasting content via a sparking conversation.

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