Are you repeating your social media mistakes with Google Plus or have you learned the lesson of Social Media Engagement?
As a marketer and online business owner I bought and borrowed my share of e-books on Social Media and went after fast results cheap. My MySpace at it’s peak had 2900 friends, my tagged over 8,000, my Apsense several hundred, like my LinkedIn which promised 5 generations of connectivity putting this guy’s voice on the wire to millions.
I was even near capacity on Facebook Friends and have accounts on hundreds of smaller networks and forums. I followed all the best gossip rags, news feeds, and quotes on Twitter and got me 7K+ Followers. That was then and this is now.
I will tell you that a single social media promoted post from me will reach thousands and get a few hundred unique visitors over the next week. I will tell you that social media post and running updates on all my websites including the 2 social media networks I had a hand in building resulted in building multimillion visitor traffic too.
Then comes the social media Dark Side.
See, recent testing and analysis on my marketing show that my success is not the sheer numbers of contacts. Nope. In fact less than 30% of the people I followed on Twitter are even active in their accounts, another 25% uses autopost and the feed doesn’t seem to ever see human eyes. In short my massive network of collected contacts if worth very little in terms of activity per 1,000 followers.
I am a Social Media Professional and I am telling you that huge numbers are crap unless you’re Justin Bieber and all those fans can’t get enough. Brands and Companies are seldom rock stars.
Now this is a scary thing to admit because it took thousands of hours and thousands of dollars to develop a total social presence of over 70,000 contacts. I was amazed at my results so I kept buying connections, adding accounts, and filling them full of GREAT Content. But, even as this sounds like a mistake piece it’s actually a major bragging point for me because of all the things I did wrong I have done one thing right.
Just one thing right and it makes me happy with my Social Media Marketing ability.
I stayed human amid the push to automate and have spent 10 years doing RT’s of great post, @friend with words of wisdom or a good prayer, and I followed trends in my own style instead of riding the coat tails of Joe Popular. We are talking Social Media Engagement and for my network it seems to be around 6% live readers who interact with the things I post. Let’s see 6% of 70,000 is around 4200 people who will read a set of post across multiple social networks. I will say around 3,000 of those probably are same friend different network so let’s call it 1500 engaged social media contacts.
Now, I have seen a Bieber Tweet get 1500 replies while one from Coca Cola gets 500, and one from Safeway Stores may get 130 comments, replies, and re-shares. All have millions of followers and get these lower numbers because a fan that is not engaged is not going to socialize with your brand. Fact is we as Social Media Experts are all virgins to social media. What has been done is measly foreplay to what is to come with social media so before your next Pin on Pinterest, or Sales Seminar presentation you call a hangout on Google Plus let’s look at ways we can engage our audience and do more with less.
Google and their +1 team will be happy with me using them as an example here.
Looking at Plus for a minute you can see countless ways that they went right in addressing the needs of companies and fans, brands and customers alike. In fact you can now even use Google Plus to live stream Video talks to Youtube which for the record has WAY more engaged users than Ustream. I love Ustream but the market is getting my Hangout or webinar on Youtube and in front of a half billion potential viewers.
The one thing I see wrong in Google Plus is the ability to add people without a opt in to a group or circle and then send them all the links and brand images videos etc.. in the world at a simple mouse click. Yep Google Plus comes out of the gate semi automated. The API allows you to go even further into the realm of canned e-mails to the victim’s virtual or social media mailbox. Heck Google will even send them an e-mail to tell them someone has sent you a message so they go read your ads.
In turn, here come the products teaching you how to SPAM the Hell out of every person you meet or buy a connection with on Google Plus.
Using the tool the right way requires knowing your followers, and that means following tons of them back and then paying attention to what they say, do, and like. You need to focus on metrics of humanity and record them in a CRM of human Kindness. Fact is they are all here for something they need and being the one to understand that need and offer a solution will ensure they read your next message and encourage them to Share, Like, Invite, Re-post, Review, etc…
Social Media Engagement starts with being social. It’s why Mr. Andy Anderson with 70K followers in Yuma AZ can drive million visitor traffic using social influence, and most brands can’t touch the results without a team of guys and girls like Andy.