The Social Edge team and I attended the world’s largest social media marketing conference last week in San Diego, called the Social Media Marketing World. We learned from people at Disney, Facebook, Dell, Buffer and many others, and below you’ll find my top takeaways. We also shared a few live updates on our Facebook page here and here. It’s an exciting time to be a marketer, you’ll learn why in this post.
If you have any questions about what’s listed below, please ask in a comment below. If you’re an Insider, March’s theme is Instagram! I’ll be adding training and tips on this topic throughout the month.
1. Bots are our future. The number one thing I’m excited about is bots. Bot simply defined: software that interacts with people in chat apps. For example: on Facebook, you can go to the Domino’s Facebook page, click Send Message and the chat box will open, giving you the option to place a new order or track an order.
With tools like Many Chat, you can set up a bot that can be used for things like automating customer service questions on Facebook or on your website, lead generation, set appointments, notify of new products or sales, stay in touch with your audience, order tracking, and you can even sell products through Messenger using a bot!
Here’s why I’m so excited about bots: we’re in the early stages, meaning it’s not over-populated, there’s a lot of opportunities for your business to launch a bot and stand out from the competition. It can also save you time, and help build your leads and sales. Plus, open rates are extremely high. An average open rate for an email is 20%. The average open rate for bots is 80%!
Screenshot from seminar at the conference:
Plus, it can save you time, and since I’ve worked with retailers for over 7 years, I know the number one challenge is having the time to focus on your social media. With some time up front to set up, you can have a bot acting as a customer service rep, and you don’t have to pay them!
At Social Edge, we’ll be releasing more information and training on how to set up, things to do with your bot and more, but for now, brainstorm some ideas on how you can use one for your business. Tip: don’t over complicate it. Think simply. For example: maybe you have a bot that greets people when they message you on Facebook, and if they type a keyword like “hours” your bot will automatically provide your hours.
2. Overcoming the Facebook Algorithm. On January 11th, Mark Zuckerberg announced major changes coming to Facebook. Most of them affect business pages and your organic reach. Some people freaked out, some jumped ship, and some are not worried. I don’t think you should be worried, here’s why. If you’re posting relevant content, that creates meaningful conversation (which is what I teach you to do!), you’re using ads to increase exposure for your page and posts (for example, the Most Recent ad I always reference), and you’re using video (especially live streaming videos), your strategy won’t change.
Mari Smith shared a great quote: If the marketers move in, the members move out. Act like a member! This means you need to humanize your content, share your story, post behind the scenes pictures, ask meaningful questions and engage. I’ve been teaching this since I started in social media over 10 years ago, but a lot of marketers have hacked the system and started posting irrelevant content, almost spamming their audiences, and attracted (organically and through paid platforms) unqualified leads to create social proof, which actually hurt them in the long run. Just be you! Know your perfect customer groups, post content to enrich their lives, and use tools like Live Streaming and Ads to further your reach.
NOTE: People gaze at video posts 5 times longer than a static image. If you want people on your content longer, use video!
3. Instagram Advertising. There are over 300 million daily active users on Instagram, however only 25 million businesses, and only 2 million of them are advertising. Not only do businesses have the opportunity to get more exposure by advertising to a quality audience on Instagram, they have an opportunity to stand out in Stories with content that feels like a Story. If you’re not sure what “feels like a Story”, just start watching other people’s Stories, and brainstorm content ideas for your business to share, that doesn’t feel like an ad. A benefit of a Story ad is it’s linkable, so people can scroll up and be taken to your website, a specific product page, your Facebook page, an opt-in form, etc. Story ads on Instagram tend to be a lower cost because the demand is lower, click here to learn more about setting one up.
60% of the buying cycle is over before people even talk to you – meaning they are making decisions based on online experiences and what they see the brand doing online.
When writing emails, social media posts or blogs, use concrete nouns that hurt if they’re dropped on your foot. Use active verbs you can see in your head. Listen up – use “talk” not “converse”. Rewrite in the second person and hit the return button every 2 or 3 sentences to give you content space to breathe.
Facebook is increasing their investments in live streaming shows to compete with Netflix, Hulu and Amazon.
Creating a show on Facebook was a hot topic – doing a show the same day and time, give it a name, and be consistent. How could your business offer a show each week? What would you talk about it? Is it worth the time investment? It might be 🙂
“The opposite of Bravery is not Cowardice, it’s Conformity.”
Use emojis in buttons.
When going live, start with saying “Welcome to the replay!” because no one will be live with you right at the very beginning.
- Two video editing software: Screenflow and iMovie.
Let a comment below sharing what you’re most excited about!