Content Discovery Smackdown: Hootsuite vs. Buffer vs. KloutContent Marketing Minds: Ingredients of the Tastiest Content [Nutrition Label]From the Corn Field to the Digital Era: Content Marketing Starts with TrustContent Marketing: Is 2014 Really Shaping Up to Be the Year of Video?
Your Customers Aren’t Listening! How to Create Consumer Dialogue that Converts4 Tools for Nonprofit Social Listening and Reputation ManagementThe Promising Role of Social Listening in Treating Health IssuesThe Importance of Social Listening for Brands
- Public Relations
Facebook Testing a Way for Users to Buy Products on the Platform7 Website Tips to Attract More Shoppers to Your PagesHow eCommerce, Augmented and Virtual Reality Will Redefine the Retail ExperienceSearch Query Analysis to Increase eCommerce Website Conversions
- Content Marketing
Technology & Data
Social Startups: Bizible Connects All the Dots from Marketing Contributions to RevenueCreating the Perfect Profile for Your Social Media Marketing EffortUsing GPS and Localization for Social AnalyticsAnalytics and Prospect Intel: Discovering Your Ideal Prospect
- Big Data
- Tech & Innovation
3 Security Risks You’re Taking Every Day While Using Social MediaShould the President Have the Power to "Pull the Plug" on the Internet?How Safe is Your WordPress Website From Hackers and Other Malicious Attacks?
- Software & Tools
- Small Business
- Social Organization
Celebrating the Grand Re-Launch of Social Media Today! SBH Podcast Episode 8Why Should You Care If Your Employees Are Thought Leaders?Beyond Engagement: The Art of Managing Social-Media Risk in Employee Advocacy
Why All-in-One Social Media Management Systems Don't Cut It for Social Customer ServiceWhat You Should Know About Customer, Digital, and Contextual ExperienceSurging into Q3: How to Make It Better Than Q2Is How You Serve Your Customers Costing You Business?
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
How You Can Climb the Social Media Ladder....Fast
Posted on September 10th 2012
Let’s say you’ve done all the fundamentals to integrate social media into your business and marketing. You have a Facebook page and have worked diligently to grow your fan base. You tweet consistently and work to engage your followers. Perhaps you are a regular on LinkedIn and participate in Groups. If you’ve accomplished even some of that, you’ve secured a terrific foundation for continued success in the future.
But once the foundation is in place, what if you want to move up the social media ladder a little quicker? There is a faster path that can be summarized in one word - a concept for those who like to push progress and get to the finish line sooner. It’s something you can begin planning for right away and implement very quickly. Understanding this one word takes regular marketing growth and kicks it into overdrive. When explained properly, you can suddenly see the possibilities for turbo-charging your social media growth and the profits this kind of recognition can fuel.
The word is partnership. This came to mind recently with the announcement by Ford Motor Company would be adding a special focus on social media in their sponsoring partnership with the National Hockey League team the Florida Panthers. Ford recognizes the exponential equation in the social media world and the Twitter, Facebook and WhoSay pages of the Panthers will now be “Powered by Ford.”
But you would be right to wonder if partnerships could work for less well known businesses. After all, it’s unlikely that Ford is about to knock on your door and ask for a partnership. And maybe the Florida Panthers aren’t quite ready to kick Ford to the curb and switch to a partnership with you.
Fortunately, the power of partnership extends well beyond this type of high-level deal. Here is a terrific strategy for propelling your business from ordinary social media participant to a position of marketing dominance.
The key is to find a partner who serves the same target market as you but is not a competitor. This strategy will take a small amount of research and thought. If you are an accountant, perhaps you can forge a partnership with a local bank that serves your target market. If you are a movie theater, you could form a relationship with a nearby restaurant.
There are two important points to keep in mind when establishing this type of relationship. One, you want to make sure that your partner business is one you are comfortable recommending. Obviously, you are tying at least part of your own reputation to the other business when you enter into a relationship. Two, the business you partner with should be able to provide some social media leverage. In other words, you want to scout out other businesses that are consistently active on social media, have a decent number of followers, and are open to a mutually beneficial relationship.
Once a relationship is established, determine some ground rules for cross-promoting each other. As always on social media, you are going to want to avoid blatantly and constantly selling. Even if it is for someone else, this is a no-no. However, it is okay to say nice things about each other, talk about a great promotion, and encourage them to become fans of the others’ business. Just don’t overdo it.
Do you see the potential with partnerships? It is about much more than just getting recommendations or nice comments. It really is about leveraging each other lists, followers, and fans for the benefit of all involved. Form just a few of these strategic partnerships and growth will not be linear, it will be exponential.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t necessarily limit your partnerships to other businesses. Maybe you promote a non-profit that you support and get a thank you through their social media accounts. Nurtured properly, this could grow into a more formal partnership. Or maybe you belong to a smaller, exclusive networking group and you work together to formalize ways to promote each other using social media.
Start looking for ways to partner, take action, and keep your business growing. If you've established partnerships for your business share your experience and the things you've learned below. Thanks for your comments!