Social Media Examiner recently released its 2014 Social Media Marketing Industry Report detailing the latest trends in social media marketing. With 50 pages of interesting details, there’s a lot to absorb and numerous takeaways. For example, more companies are integrating social media with traditional marketing than they did last year. In fact, 83 percent of respondents indicated that they have done so. However, that means that 17 percent have not.
If you’re one of those who has yet to integrate social media with traditional marketing, let’s get started! Use the tips below to extend your marketing efforts into the social realm.
- Put your social media icons out there – including in print. Whether you’re advertising on television, radio, the Internet, or in print, you need to let customers and prospects know where to find you socially. Using social media icons is immediately identifiable, so make sure to use them. However, some of these marketing channels are not clickable. Thus, you’ll also want to make it easy for your prospects to find you by including the URL to your social sites.
- Use QR codes – QR codes can solve the click problem, too. These images can be printed in ads, on business cards, on invoices, on brochures, and even on your company car. They contain a special code that can be “read” with a smartphone. Once scanned by a smartphone, the user’s mobile browser opens to the designated URL. For example, if you run a restaurant and want to encourage diners to like your Facebook page, place a QR code in your menu along with the words, “Like us on Facebook.” In addition to creating static QR codes pointing to websites and social media profiles, you can create them for online contests, YouTube videos, and more.
- Use hashtags – You’ve likely seen hashtags displayed prominently during television shows such as The Voice or American Idol. These hashtags encourage social media users to hold conversations around the tag’s topic and then filter those tagged conversations. You can do the same with your traditional marketing. For example, you could run an ongoing social media contest for your customers and prospects. Instead of drawing names from business cards placed in a fishbowl at your establishment, you could encourage people to tweet a message using a specific hashtag. Not only is this a fun way to interact with potential customers, it also exposes your brand to a larger audience. As with icons and QR codes, hashtags aren’t limited to online communications. Superimpose them over television ads, read them out loud on radio ads, or add them to printed materials such as direct mail, coupons, brochures, and promotional items.
- Use your email signature – Your email signature has plenty of virtual real estate for marketing purposes. Use it to link to your latest blog post, encourage recipients to check out your social networking profiles, or promote a social media campaign. Change it up every week or two and spread the additional exposure across your various social media properties.
Integrating social media marketing with traditional marketing isn’t difficult. You simply need to think about extending your traditional marketing to the social sphere and then do it.