Welcome to the conclusion of this series of posts on Using Social Media Marketing to Promote Yourself as a Brand.
I don't want to answer the question of "How do you measure the success of a social media marketing strategy?" but what I will do is offer up some advice on how to know if you are headed in the right direction. Here are some of the ways in which you might be able to understand that that what you are doing will lead to success (or that you've already nailed it).
- Connectivity - I don't think that there is a magic number of Twitter followers you need in order to know your personal branding venture has been a success, but what is important is whom you are reaching. Are the people following you just a bunch of so-and-sos? That's fine. Are they people who have money that they can give you for doing what you do? Even better. If you're a blogger, hopefully people are commenting on your musings, and possibly contacting you about guest posting. The more you can build contacts, the easier it will be to build notoriety if you have your work showcasing your talent in many places.
- Return - Since there is often little financial investment as establishing yourself as a brand in social media, your biggest investment is your time. Your time is just as important, though, so don't discount it. Don't expect to make a ton of money right away, no matter what you are doing. Sure, you could be one of those rare cases that has a video go viral in a matter of hours, but those views don't equal dollars. (For more on this, you can check out my previous post on viral video as an effective marketing strategy). Return can mean more than just dollars in your pocket. Return can be about those people who continue to "return" to see what you are up to because they appreciate what you do. Again, notoriety and identification can be this measure of success.
- Being Better - Something I don't think that people take into consideration when they think of success is the idea of personal success in your craft. I feel like I have become a better writer as a result of my blogging, and social media has really come to show me that there are a lot of other people out there like me, and that I can learn from them. Nobody ever got anywhere without failing once or twice, so don't get discouraged. You'll only get better, and that in itself makes the journey worth it.
- Case in Point - I'd like to take a moment to talk about an artist who I think is a prime example of someone who has had some success by promoting himself as a brand and as an individual. Austin Kleon is Texas based cartoonist and writer who has a great blog and is possibly my favorite person to follow on Twitter. His blog is top-notch, and he has recently gotten a book deal for a collection of his (very cool) newspaper blackout poems. (You might have Stumbled these before, but if you haven't read them, you should start now.) His Tumblr blog is also nicely done, and he's done a nice job of keeping his design and brand consistent through his other social media Kleon is a creative and humble guy, but he seems to have some great passion for what is doing. (Austin, expect my submission for the October contest soon!)
I hope that my tips have been helpful in steering you in the right direction to help promote yourself using social media marketing. If there are any other helpful hints you want to share, please let us know in the comments. You can read the whole series of these posts at the following links:
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