Just Do It: Social Media Marketing Pt. 2

5, 4, 3, 2, 1 … And welcome back! Our first installment of Social Media Marketing covered some of the rewarding benefits of social media for your business. However, we didn’t have time to cover as many as we wanted to, so that’s what today is for! We’ll feature some more benefits to social media marketing that you may not (or may have already 🤭) known about. We hope you’re ready hehe 😬.

Sometimes, it feels as if social media marketing is just too good to be true … I mean, it essentially costs next to nothing for your business compared to other marketing methods and has a substantial (and boy, do I mean substantial) user base, among several other valuable advantages. According to Statista, in Canada, there were 22.69 million people using social media in 2017 when the population was at 36.71 million. Whoa. One, that’s not even counting for the fact that most of them are using multiple platforms. Two, that’s over half of the population using social media. Hopefully, this is something that your business is already using to your advantage.

As promised, we’ll highlight some more of our favourite social media marketing benefits. Let’s start!

1. Development of a Community

Social media is capable of a multitude of things. One of our favourites is its ability to create a sense of community among brands and people around the world who may not even know each other personally. The fact that something can gather and unite so many different people together boggles us like crazy!

One of the most successful marketing campaigns is hosted by the global corporation, Coca-Cola. In fact, you may have even participated in it yourself. In 2015, Coca-Cola released their “Share a Coke” campaign that featured their bottles with the label of “Share a Coke with” followed by a generic name referencing your friends, family, significant other, or whoever else – you name it! These bottles sparked the interest of people around the world as they shared their experiences and stories on social media with the hashtag #ShareaCoke. Those who shared their stories had a chance to have their photos featured on Coca-Cola’s website and even across Coca-Cola billboards. Talk about incentives for community engagement! Coca-Cola fostered a sense of community with their customers by helping build shareable stories (and bottles 😜!)

2. Unbiased Reviews

Building on the concept of community, social media allows your customers to share and publish online reviews on what they think of your business and your products or services. Now, while this is definitely a benefit, you do have to caution that because these reviews are honest, if people have issues with what you offer, they could make that heard too. However, if they love it, that’s great for business and builds your reputation.

Regardless of what people say about your business online (and offline), reviews give you the opportunity to monitor these comments, learn from them, and improve your business based on these remarks. One of the best ways to show your customers that they are important to you is to listen to them and their needs 😌.

3. Advanced Targeting

With all the options available on various social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, you can engage in very advanced targeting for your business (so you don’t attract and pay to advertise towards the wrong target! That’s just not very efficient and effective for you.) If you do know exactly who you want your product (or service) to reach and what they need, you will be very pleased with the several options that these platforms offer. You can target locations, ages, interests, behaviours, connections, education level, and many more!

Also, with a clear understanding of your target market, you can figure out how to better solve their needs and/or problems. For a very detailed and helpful guide on advanced targeting, check out what we found from Neil Patel! Super helpful and useful to reach exactly who you want to reach!

With all these valuable reasons, it’s hard not to love social media marketing! We’re here to help your business become ready for a new digital revolution. If you have any questions regarding social media, marketing, or just want to talk, email us at service@pinmo.ca.

A New Dynamic: Chat Bots

Robots, artificial intelligence, and technology are often the subject matter of several controversial conversations. So much so that they’ve fueled numerous episodes from the dystopian Netflix TV show, Black Mirror, igniting many people’s techno-paranoia.  Now combine those three – robots, artificial intelligence, and technology – and you’ve got chat bots. Mwhahaha 😈. Just kidding, chat bots aren’t actually scary at all and shouldn’t intimidate you. I mean, look how cute they look 🤖.

“Hi there! My name is Alex. How can I help you today?” If you’ve ever stumbled upon a website with a chat platform, chances are … you’re not talking to a real person *dramatic gasp.* Yup, you heard that right. You, my friend, are talking to an intelligent robot programmed with algorithms and functions to know exactly what and how to respond. It sounds pretty sad and lonely now that you know you’re talking to a robot, huh 🤭. But it’s fineee, we’ve all probably been there before. And hey, robots do a pretty good job of replicating human interaction.

What are Chat Bots and How Do I Use Them?

Chat bots. Although they’ve been around for a while now, they’re starting to pick up buzz and interest in the world of digital marketing. In fact, according to data from Google Trends, search volumes surrounding chat bots have grown as much as 19 times within the past five years. 19. Talk about an increase in buzz!

But, what exactly are chat bots? Sadly for some, they aren’t physical robots that converse with us to make us feel less lonely HAHAHAHA 😂. What they are is computer programs built to emulate human intelligence in online chatting or conversations – which I guess could be used to make us feel less lonely. But I digress.

If your business uses Facebook, one of the easiest ways to integrate chat bots into your social media strategy is through Messenger. Onto your business page, you can actually integrate and install chat bots that allow your customers to have automated conversations – even when you’re away! By having this function integrated, your customers can seamlessly and easily interact with your business to buy tickets, get directions, see menus, schedule appointments, ask common questions, and more! Imagine all of the tasks you could automate for your business – the possibilities are endless. 

Just like Facebook, Twitter offers these chat bot options as well. Whether you choose to integrate chat bots on Facebook or Twitter (or maybe even both!) depends on your specific customers and where they’re connected to you the most.

Why Use Social Media Chat Bots?

If you’re a traditionalist, I know you’ll need a little bit of convincing – especially if you’re skeptical of automation processes and anything to do with technology. So, we’ve got some reasons for you that should encourage you to want to implement chat bots. And no, don’t worry, the robots aren’t going to take over the world.

1. Create Better Customer Experiences

If you’ve ever conversed with a chat bot, you might remember how surprised you were to find how natural, seamless, and personalized the entire experience felt. If you haven’t, try this one out for fun! You might find yourself actually having fun and being amused 🤭. Features like this enhance the experience your customers have with your brand – which is always a good thing!

Furthermore, because the bot is intelligently programmed, it can even suggest future purchasing decisions for your customers based on their previous purchasing history. Who wouldn’t like that?! It’s like having Spotify’s very successful Discover Weekly feature, but for your business!

And as if that wasn’t enough, chat bots can easily be molded to coordinate well with any industry. All that’s required is to train the bot to provide the right conversation structure and flow to mold well with the industry. And that’s it! It’s that malleable!

2. Provide 24/7 Customer Support

Unlike human capabilities, chat bots are able to service your customers at all times, even when you’re busy. As humans, we all need sleep and rest. Even when you’re resting, dozing off, and counting sheep, chat bots can help answer any questions that your customers might have and service some of their needs. This is even more beneficial when you’re a global business and time zones stand in the way between you and your customers.

By offering these after-hour services, you no longer have to leave your customers waiting for a response. We’ve all been through that excruciatingly painful struggle of being put on hold to speak with a representative, and you definitely don’t want your business to be on the other end 😳.

3. Save Time and Money

This reason should make sense. Automating processes saves your business time, money, and gives you less things to worry about. What business owner wouldn’t want that??

Because bots are bots after all, they can communicate with thousands of customers at the same time – which people generally can’t do.

Most of the time, bots also automate repetitive processes that can be tedious and time consuming for humans to engage in. By featuring bots, your employees can save time, focus on what’s most important, and be more productive.

Given these reasons, chat bots are evidently one way to support your corporate social media strategy. However, bear in mind that your strategy shouldn’t be founded on only foundation, but should incorporate a mix of other tactics such as pay per click marketing (ahem, use Pinmo hehe), live streaming, blogs, and other forms of content production!

Just Do It: Social Media Marketing

Whether you’re a small brick and mortar business owner or the CEO of a large international corporation, chances are you probably use social media in your free time to keep in touch with your own personal friends, family, and connections (and maybe even check out a few memes here and there to have a quick laugh – and don’t pretend like you’ve never done it before). If you’re already using for your personal use, why not as well use it for your business and marketing purposes? (Although, if you’re a large international corporation, I highly doubt you don’t already have business social media accounts). So, if you already are taking advantage of the thriving social media scene, a hundred points go out to you, my friend! You’re doing great! But if you’re not, you may need a little convincing to go and that’s exactly why I’m here. You’re welcome 😜.

However, before we start, let’s introduce some numbers in here for you to think about. In Canada, 64% of people have a social media network profile, either on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, or YouTube. More than 50% of people are registered to more than one social media platform. 53% of people are more likely to shop with businesses they can message on Facebook.

Now that we’ve set those facts aside for you to help realize the importance of social media, what are its tangible benefits for your business?

1. Higher Conversion Rates

Everything you post on your social media platforms is an opportunity to get your customers to convert. Every photo, status, update, video, or comment you share and post is a chance for your followers to react and potentially visit your website (just make sure you don’t forget to link or place your website and business’ contact details somewhere they can easily find!) And every visit to your website could lead to a conversion. Furthermore, the fact that your social media marketing humanizes your brand leads to higher conversion rates! Instead of seeing your company as just another business, your social media appeals to them personally and makes it feel like they’re communicating with actual people (instead of robots or another distant corporation). 

2. Decreased Marketing Costs

Perhaps this may be the favourite reason for your financial team 😉, but 84% of marketers found that as little as 6 hours of effort per week was enough to generate increased traffic. That’s basically like spending 1 hour a day on your social media channels – which is a fairly inexpensive form of marketing with such prosperous results. By spending this 1 hour a day to developing your strategy, you could start seeing the results of your efforts.

Let’s play with a few more numbers, I mean who doesn’t love hard facts to back up their statements 😜. 95% of marketers who used social media at least 6 hours per week saw increased exposure for their business. With the same 6 hours, 66% of marketers saw lead generation benefits and almost 50% saw a benefit of reduced marketing expenses. How’s that for efficiency and cost-effectiveness?

3. Richer Experiences for Your Customers

If you think about it, social media is basically a communication channel, right? Right! Giving your customers the ability to communicate (sometimes in real-time!) with you enriches their experience with your brand. Every interaction you have with your customers is a chance for you to demonstrate and show off your outstanding customer service levels. Social media allows for almost instantaneous interaction and customer feedback. With every successful interaction, you’ve just won brownie points and developed meaningful relationships with your customers! And who wouldn’t want that 😛?

See! It is worthwhile to engage in social media marketing. While these obviously aren’t all of the benefits of social media marketing (there are hundreds more, believe me!), these are all the ones we have time for today. If you’d like a part two, stay tuned for one coming up sometime in the near future 😬.

A New Dynamic: Live Streaming

Today, live streaming is part and parcel of a successful social media strategy. For some people, that might be unfortunate news 🙃. It’s not exactly everyone’s cup of tea to feel super comfortable standing and talking live in front of a videographer or even an iPhone to an audience online. But as we all know, the world of marketing is constantly evolving and changing we need to keep up.

One of those changes includes *dun dun dun* liveee streaming! At this very moment, I bet you’re probably thinking no one wants to watch a live stream or it’s not worth it … and that’s where you’re wrong. Everyone loves live streams. In fact, 78% of online audiences watch Facebook Live videos. Live streams don’t even have to go on for hours and hours on end – think about Instagram Live stories! They go on anywhere from a few minutes to maybe a few hours (but that’s quite rare). Instagram in itself is extremely popular and allows you to connect with your audience and personalize your brand with them. So, why wouldn’t you want to use it to your advantage?

Why Should My Business Care About Live Streaming?

Well for starters, live streaming has an extremely large user base and is growing in popularity. In fact, in 2016, it was more than a $30 billion industry and is expected to double in growth and become more than $70 billion by 2021. How’s that for a start 😉?

One of the biggest live streaming platforms today is Twitch.tv. Active users on Twitch watch videos for an average of 106 minutes every day. That’s around an hour and 45 minutes every single day. And get this: 58% of users spend more than 20 hours a week watching videos. 20 hours. That’s almost one whole day a week spent watching live streaming videos. Don’t tell me live streaming isn’t relevant 😜.

To add on top of that, people of all ages are watching and creating live streaming videos. Just check out the facts in the chart below. It speaks for itself.

What Does Live Streaming Do For My Business?

Most of the time, those who watch your live streams don’t only watch, they also engage with your business in multiple ways at the same time. In fact, the majority of your viewers will most likely use social media or a search engine to search for your name and tell their friends about it. With live streaming, your customers actively learn more about you and share you with their friends.

People love the thrill of excitement and adrenaline. Live streaming gives them exactly that (but in a milder dosage, of course. We’re not talking about bungee jumping here 🤭). In this (milder) experience, you give your audience a sense of urgency to check out your “limited-time offer.” This urgency entices them and helps convert them into paid customers. Specifically, live streams that hype new product releases effectively play with this feeling of excitement. Because these live videos are often raw and unedited, your audience doesn’t know what to expect – inspiring eager anticipation for what’s to come. If you’ve done a successful job in engaging your audience, they’ll want to come back frequently to see any new updates on the release. And then *ding ding*, it’s a winner’s situation for you.

Live streaming also builds trust. You want your audience to trust you and your business. Since your live stream is unlikely to be rehearsed, you’ll be conversing and engaging with your audience in a natural and casual way. This makes them feel like they’re participating in an authentic and genuine interaction, which increases their perceived trustworthiness towards you. All of this leads to what you want most – an improvement in customer loyalty and retention.

Go Ahead, Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

So, while you may be hesitant to engage in live streaming, you should step out of your comfort zone once in a while 😜. It’s what is in the best interest for your business and brand and something you don’t want to miss out on. It’s always better to be ahead of the fish rather than behind.

A Key Puzzle Piece: Target Marketing

Without a Target Market is Without a Direction

99.99% of the time, you, as a business owner have a clear understanding of who you’re targeting and what niche they’re in. You know exactly what their demographic, social, and economic background is and you’re using that to your advantage to better target those who you want your product to reach.

Along with all the other key steps and activities you need to figure out and decide on before your business is even actualized, pinpointing who your target market is one of them (or at least should be!) I mean, if YOU don’t know who your product is catered for, who is going to be inclined to purchase it? If you don’t know, they don’t know. It’s like shooting a dart without any sense of direction … what makes you think that a directionless shot is going to reach the bullseye? In fact, chances of that dart reaching anywhere near the bullseyes are slim to none.

And as a business owner, you would never want to spearhead and build the foundation of a business aimlessly wandering, hoping that you’ll attract just about anyone 😳.

The Importance of Target Marketing

Target marketing is a strategy that breaks large markets into smaller segments to concentrate on a specific group of customers within that audience. Most often, businesses segment based on characteristics such as demographics, psychographics, business industries, and geographic areas. Demographics consist of age, gender, education, marital status, race, and religion. Psychographics consist of values, beliefs, interests, personality, and lifestyle. Business industries consist of the actual industry. And finally, geographic areas consist of neighbourhood, area code, city, region, and country.

Now, some of you might be asking, “why is it important to have a target market?” Don’t you want to be able to serve everyone, and not just a specific and limited niche of customers? Won’t you get more customers if you attract everyone? The more the better, right? Well … not really.

When it comes to the world the marketing, things work a little differently around here. If you’re trying to attract everyone, it’s going to be challenging reaching anyone. Why? Because vague and generic messages that could appeal to anyone aren’t going to resonate as well with everyone. Are you starting to get the pattern here hehe 🤭? People like feeling special and personal, so specific and direct communication is the way to go if you want to reach your optimal audience. Having a personal message also means that you are more likely to attract and convert high-quality leads and bridge stronger customer relationships, which is always good 😌!

Target Marketing: Part of a Bigger Puzzle

As a business, you have priorities and constraints on your resources. Most likely, you don’t have the capacity or capability to effectively reach everyone with your message. With these limitations, target marketing allows you to focus on your best potential customers and compete successfully.

Because of its importance, target marketing is part and parcel of a comprehensive and inclusive marketing strategy. It’s one of the key puzzle pieces to your complete strategy, and a puzzle is never complete with even one piece missing. So, make sure you don’t lose that one critical piece 🙂!

Why Is Chinese Marketing So Important For My Business?

Welcome to Vancouver: A Diverse City

If you own a business or work in one, you probably know that the majority of your client base is multicultural and consists of different backgrounds and heritages. Heck, even if you’re an everyday resident of Metro Vancouver, you know that you live in an inclusive city. Am I right or am I right? Just take a look around outside … I think I’ve proven my point hehe.

As of 2017, Vancouver is the “most ‘Asian’ city outside of Asia.” That’s a bold statement by the Vancouver Sun, but what exactly does that mean? Well, let’s take a look at some other cities and their facts first. 33% of San Francisco’s residents have Asian backgrounds. That number is 21% for London, England. 35% for Metro Toronto. And 19% for Sydney, Australia. While these percentages seem relatively high, Vancouver tops all of them with a whopping 43% of residents with Asian backgrounds.

If you’re not considering or marketing towards your Asian audience, you’ve just lost 43% of your potential customers. Just like that. In Vancouver alone, the population of Chinese residents was 499,175 in 2016. Those with the Chinese languages as their mother tongue were 385,355. In 2018, those numbers have exponentially grown, giving way for a bigger Chinese market to expose your offering to. Considering the vast number of Chinese residents living in Vancouver, it’s unmistakeably important for your business to engage in this niche form of marketing.

Why You Should Invest in Chinese Marketing

So, why is Chinese marketing important for your business? Why should your business focus and engage in it? Well for starters, it’s different than traditional marketing. The format, the style, the message, and obviously, the language is also different. Have you ever seen an ad (or anything for that matter) that doesn’t exactly speak to you or maybe even confuses you? Yup, we’ve all been there, and on the business end, you definitely don’t want your audience to ever feel that way. But by catering your marketing strategies with niche segments, you connect and relate with them on a more personal level. With this, your business resonates with your audience stronger and longer. And who wouldn’t want that? 😌

Another reason? It’s all in the facts and numbers. The sheer amount of individuals living in Vancouver who are Chinese and/or speak Chinese languages are substantial enough that it could actually be detrimental for your business to ignore this market. By ignoring the Chinese market, you are literally crossing off (probably!) millions in profit that could be expended by this segment. And we’re not even accounting for those who live around the world and in China who your business could also be reaching! Speaking of which …

Without a doubt, China is a big player in the global market, if not one of the biggest. In fact, they are the world’s number one trading nation and manufacturer by output. Their GDP growth rate over the past three decades has consistently exceeded 7%. Their household incomes are increasing, with more than 300 million citizens considered middle class. Just to list a few as there are many more facts than we have time for. And with such a big player, their social and economic prowess is transforming businesses. Because of this, you want to make sure that your business jumps on board too before it’s too late. And hey, you don’t ever want to be the last player in the game 😳.

Why Not?

If you were debating before whether to invest in Chinese marketing, I hope you’re debating no more. I mean, all of the reasons point towards a yes, so why not? In fact, it will probably be one of the best decisions you’ve made for business. You can thank me later 😜.

How to Be A Better Social Media Marketer

We all want to improve and become better versions of ourselves – personally and professionally. It’s human nature to want to strive for the best. But, in the realm of social media marketing, how exactly can we become better marketers? In fact, with almost every business on social media, how can you stand out from your competition and be a better marketer?  Fear not, we’ll tell you exactly how.

1. Create a game plan and stick to it

The first step to becoming a better marketer is simple: Conceptualize your strategy and stick with it. Before you even do any sort of marketing, you need to have your strategy set in place so nothing gets side-tracked and your content doesn’t fall through. Also, keep in mind that you should be satisfied with your strategy enough that you would only want minor changes, or else your business and your principles could be easily swayed.

Your strategy should be set like a SMART goal: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based. You want to make sure that your strategy is specific enough to target audiences, measurable enough for results and conversions, attainable for your resources, relevant for your audience, and time-based so you can see it through within a number of months or years.

With your strategy set, you’re good to go.

2. Treat each channel as an individual entity

There are several social media platforms for you to market on – Facebook, Instagram, Reddit, YouTube, and so on. While it may be tedious to think of a separate marketing strategy for each channel, if you want to market properly and be a better marketer, this is the way to go.

For each channel, you need to adjust your strategy depending on the audience and demographics for that channel and publish content that appeals to them. Posting the same content for every single channel isn’t going to be helpful because (1) your audience will become bored of seeing the same thing and (2) what appeals to one demographic may not appeal to another. So, make sure you strategize your plan for each channel separately if you really want to become a better social media marketer.

3. Embrace Blunders

We’re all human and sometimes we make mistakes. It’s inevitable and nothing to be ashamed of – especially in the fast-paced world of social media. If you ever face blunders or hiccups when posting anything, embrace them. That’s not to say that you should publicly announce minor grammatical errors, but don’t delete the post. Most likely, some followers have already seen it and they are more likely to notice continuous re-posts. But for bigger hiccups, you should always proactively respond in an appropriate and actionable manner. Your followers will definitely appreciate this, and you will be perceived as a better business – and you know perception is key.

And there you have it, exactly how you can become a better social media marketer. We’re all still learning and improving, so it’s always a climbing ladder to becoming a better marketer.

3 Free Tools Every Social Media Manager Needs

We love social media (we really do!). But because we do so much with social media, we realize it takes a lot of time and planning to run your accounts flawlessly. From curating content to designing graphics for posts, there is no shortage of work for a Social Media Manager (like me!). There’s also no shortage of digital tools that claim to make a Social Media Manager’s life easier. With so many different options, it can be tough to know what’s the best. I’ve used my fair share of online tools to help me in my job and from putting countless platforms to the test, I’ve found three I can’t live without.

1. Trello

Trello is like sticky notes on crack. If you love to visualize projects and timelines, Trello is the tool for you. Whether you set it up it like a KanBan board (like I do) or use it to organize campaigns across different social channels, Trello can help you collaborate with your team (yup, you can have multiple people on a single board) to classify content and make it an easier process to create, edit, and approve.

For me, Trello helps me track the tasks I have to do, what tasks are in progress and which are blocked. I also have a column for “today,” where I can move the cards I’ll (hopefully!) complete that day. Trello is super flexible and the possibilities are endless, so you can easily find what works best for you and your team.

2. TweetDeck

If you’re monitoring multiple Twitter accounts for your company, TweetDeck is the tool for you. When I first looked at TweetDeck I saw it as a flurry of activity I needed to monitor and I’m not going to lie, it freaked me out a bit. But once you get the hang of TweetDeck, you’ll come to love its nonstop, ever-changing craziness. TweetDeck allows you to add columns like your home feed, mentions, and messages so that you can see all the activity that’s going on across all your accounts simultaneously – that’s right, no more logging in and out of accounts constantly. My favorite part is that it lets you schedule Tweets to go out at a later date or time – no need to get up to Tweet early in the morning! 😉

3. Canva

There’s no doubt that social media requires designing content. If you’re like me, you won’t want to bother your designer for a measly Instagram image announcing what event you’ll be attending on the weekend when he has much more important things to work on; you’ll try to make a killer graphic yourself. Though I’m ashamed to admit it, there was once a time many moons ago where I would try anything to make a decent-looking graphic quickly, including trying to maneuver images and text over one another in Microsoft Word to create something that vaguely resembled a poster or an Instagram image. With Canva, that struggle is no longer. From Instagram stories to Facebook posts, Canva has it all. You can choose a template to customize or create your own from scratch. I use Canva to create event announcements, Instagram story graphics, and other visuals for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. It’s simple to use but it can look like you hired a professional designer to create a campaign for you. The best part is, it’s free!

Of course, digital tools aren’t what’s going to make or break your career – only your skills and knowledge can help you grow into the professional you want to be. That said, my job would be a lot more difficult without having some tools to help me along. Trello, TweetDeck, and Canva make my life easier, my tasks more manageable, and my content look much better.