The Secret Sauce for Social Media Revealed.
Today in “The Small Cap Love Trap Part I: Social Media Marketing” series, I am going to address social media marketing solutions for publicly listed companies. Picking up the phone, I speed dial our Social Media Director, Sharron Clayton and she agrees to collaborate with me on this piece.
When Sharron started providing social media marketing for InvestorIntel in 2005, she reminded me of the outrageous claims that social media firms were advertising. It was ‘do or die’ time the media told us, and frantically many CEOs threw their companies into ridiculously expensive programs – we needed everything in usual human fashion, fast. We had a group in Texas promise enlightened investment audiences for companies we were working with if we would liaise with their service solutions: they could get it done for 10-30k a month!
We passed. After all, if you’re like us, you want to see results and at the end of the day social media was like great PR, impossible to quantify?
In our conversation, I asked Sharron to provide me with her secret social media sauce, her Top 10 Social Media Tips for Public Companies as they prepare their marketing programs for Fall, and honestly, I was underwhelmed. “Sharron” I borderline whined: “this has to be the most boring list I have ever read.” And then I paused, she had hit the nail on the head — it was just this easy. After all, the real secret sauce for any good financial media marketing program is the maintenance of a ritualized marketing program.
Is it really that simple? Yes, redundant deployment of systems or ‘orderly channel processes’ work. And we are on a mission to nail down the elements that work in our business. How to maintain updates for shareholders and the company’s respective industry, attract new shareholders and and widen investment audiences. To-date we have seen business deals occur, new shareholders step in and all from a simple tweet from the right person at the right time.
Yes, we do have some sizzle for your social media steak, but at the end of the day, one must select the steak, get it prepped and on the barbeque, before the barbeque sauce can be added. So here is our social media quick 1-2-3 tips for Fall, and as Sharron pointed out to me — if you want our recipe for the sauce, you know who to call!
- Identify Beneficial Platforms. InvestorIntel deems Twitter and LinkedIn to be the ‘best sellers’ these days. So, if your seeking the basics, start with these 2 accounts… once you have the basics – build a YouTube channel, add an Instagram account…. you get the picture — now start distributing them!
- Seek Relationships, Not Just Followers. Having 100 followers who regularly engage with you and your content on Twitter are infinitely more valuable than 10,000 that ignore you. Build relationships by targeting influencers, active in your identified target audience. Don’t forget your industry!
- Set goals. What are you trying to accomplish? Let’s get back to basics here. Most of us are marketing companies that have room to grow. So, if you want to get a wider investment audience redirected to your website, its crazy out there as social media can do such a wide spectrum of things from selling products to attracting partnership interest! See next point…
- Create a Review System. This one drives me nuts. Many of our competitors offer 1 set of stats, but as per the previous point, these stats must be tailored for you. So, for instance, if your trying to get traffic to your site, ensure that you have a Google Analytics or similar program to review once a month. If your goal is to widen your investment audience, how many messages are you securing each month, or heck – look at your stock chart!
- Monthly Reporting. This is such a critical point that I am tossing this in again to reinforce. ‘Ugh, but I don’t have the time’ you may be thinking. The bigger point is that you don’t have the time not to! After all, if you’re not taking the time to evaluate what is working and why it is, or it is not — you may find out that you have been dating the wrong person for too long!
- Get Visual. No matter where you’re posting, photo and video content are ‘totally killing it right now’. From photos, videos and yes even Facebook Live; but again, if you’re not handling your #1-2 social media accounts properly, why have 3-4-5? Before you go crazy, build the basics! My #1 pet peeve is how many public companies are missing their trading symbols on their banner ads on their associated accounts.
- Stay Active. Inactive social feeds are like anything inactive — useless. For content suggestions we could write another series on this alone. But how about the primary elements: tweet your news releases consistently… it’s mind blowing how few of the publicly listed companies can consistently commit to regular distribution of just their news.
- Build a Hashtag Strategy. Make your hashtags specific to the audience you’re trying to attract. The more targeted the audience, the more engaged they will be, and the better your content will be received. Research the hashtags that will get you in front of your audience.
- Monitor…yourself. Any successful marketing program understands that the critical component in branding these days, is that you must market both the CEO and your Company simultaneously. This is simple. Simply search for your ticker symbol, your CEO name or #yourcompany name and see what is being said and if you need or should address it…add this to your monthly review
- Research your competitors. What are your competitors posting? Do you think another company in your sector’s market valuation is more effective than yours? Well, then check it out — perhaps they have 10x’s the followers or better yet, the ones they are following are more targeted. Heck just start following their followers…. its easy!
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On a diet again recently, an ongoing state of living it seems — I told my best friend: it’s simple, eat less and drink more water. I think financial media marketing is similar in that we must all re-review and at the end of the day ask ourselves: what works? And then, just do it.
[Publisher’s Note: Special thanks to Sharron Clayton and note that we are doing an ongoing series on financial media marketing as many companies prepare their Fall campaigns. If you have any questions, call us at 647 345 5486 or email us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to show you have a creative side, we dare you to tweet a message to us at @Investor_Intel]
Tracy Weslosky is the CEO for InvestorIntel Corp. and founder of InvestorIntel.com, a trusted source of online market information for investors in the capital markets, ... <Read more about Tracy Weslosky>