A lot of people think the goal is to get likes and engagement, but when it comes to the best use of social media in business, conversations and conversions are the metrics that matter. That’s what results in sales. The rest are vanity metrics. Those who think it’s all about views and clicks might be missing the point.
David: Hi, and welcome to the podcast. In today’s episode, co-host Jay McFarland and I will be discussing the best use of social media in business. Welcome back, Jay.
Jay: Hey, thank you so much, David I feel like this is one of those areas where I don’t feel confident in myself, but I’m not in a position yet where I’m going to hire somebody to do it.
And so, it’s hard to get motivated every day, because I know it’s an important part, especially in my business. Most of our leads come from the internet and social media, so it’s like I don’t know that this is something I should be handling myself.
David: I think a lot of people feel that way, and for many of us, social media can be a huge distraction.
And in some cases, like, well, the best use of social media is to keep it turned off if you have to actually get things done. But there are benefits to it when it’s used properly, and part of our Total Market Domination course involves working with our clients to help them through the best forms of first contact with a new prospect.
And one of those methods is social media. I mean, you can be doing it via cold calls, you can be doing it via networking events, direct mail, lots of different ways to initiate first contact with a new prospect. But many people like the idea of using social media, particularly because it is a one-to-many method of reaching people.
You can post something on social media one time, and hundreds of people could see it, or thousands of people could see it. And so it allows you a great deal of leverage much more than if you’re making one phone call at a time or meeting one person at a time. So there are definitely benefits to utilizing it.
And of course, with the benefits come the flip side, the detriments that go along with it in some cases. And so one of the things that a lot of people seem to struggle with is that they go onto social media with one purpose and they end up doing 10 other things that they didn’t plan on doing when they got in there.
And they don’t end up doing the thing that they actually wanted to do. And so a lot of it, I think, boils down to the fact that we’re not sure what to do. In a lot of cases. We’re not sure, well, what should I post? What should I say? What should it be designed to do? And there’s so much talk among so many people about creating content, and I’ve done classes on this.
The fact that content is kind of a misunderstood word. If you think about what is content? Well, content is whatever’s in something, right? If you’ve got a bag, whatever’s in that bag is the content. Could be something good, could be something very bad, right? But whatever’s in the bag. So if you think of it like that and you say, okay, I have to create content.
Well, yeah, but you need to do more than just content. You want to make sure that whatever it is that you’re dispersing to the masses has enough value for people that they say, wow, that was actually worthwhile. That was worth my time. So a lot of what we focus on in the communication aspects of what we do with our clients is related to how do we do that?
How do we create value in our communications? And I know I’m sort of rattling off all kinds of different things that could be entirely different podcast subjects. But coming back to the idea of the best use of social media, if you think about what it is, I mean, I’ve got an idea of what I believe it is.
Do you have any thoughts on that before I spill the beans on what I think here?
Jay: Well, I think it’s going to be different for everybody and what type of clientele you have. I’m guessing a key part of this and we’ve spent a lot of money on my end doing this. Is identifying who our end user is, what, what type of client are we trying to attack?
When we first started it, we were and I’ve told you this story before, we were attacking so many leads. It was blowing us out of the water. But the leads were not closing, and so we had to narrow that field, finally to a point where we could just get potential leads.
In order to do that, we spent a lot of time around a table figuring out who that potential client is and what are the keywords that are going to be interesting to them?
And when you talk about posting content, if you’re just shooting in the dark and you haven’t identified who your target is, then you’re going to spend a lot of time on social media spinning your wheels, and you may be chasing people away or just making them disinterested because you haven’t put in the time ahead of time to really have an impact.
David: Yeah. When I think about having an impact on social media. And I want to be really transparent here too. I have not used social media nearly to the extent that other people have to get clients. We have other methods of first contact that are extremely effective that work really well. And so don’t look to me as the expert on this, but what I can tell you is that to the extent that we have done this effectively, the way that we’ve done that is using social media for the primary purpose of initiating conversations.
So when I think in terms of the best use of social media, For me, but I also believe for most other businesses, the best use of it is to be able to initiate a conversation with someone else. So if I’m able to post something that’s interesting enough to get someone to comment back, and then I can reply to that comment and then they reply to that, now we’re actually in a conversation.
And of course, conversations is exactly where sales happen. You don’t have sales generally, if you’re a salesperson without having a conversation. Now that could take place via text. It could take place via Messenger. It could take place in comments. It could take place on the phone, in person. Lots of different ways to do it.
“When it comes to social media in business, most people focus on likes and clicks. And while that might feed the algorithm, I still believe the metrics that matter are conversations and conversions. Conversations and conversions result in sales. The rest are vanity metrics.” — David Blaise
But if we think about it from that standpoint, it makes things a little easier, because when we’re on social media, we are programmed to think in terms of likes and think in terms of shares and things like that.
And likes and shares are fine. Shares are probably better than likes in my view, because it gets it in front of more people. And if the content is good, then it expands your horizons a bit. But if a bunch of people like your stuff and it doesn’t lead to conversations, then what really happened?
Their likes might get it in front of more people, because I think that’s how the algorithm works. But, if people are not actually engaging with it and initiating conversations with you, then I believe there’s a lot of opportunity that is lost.
And when you talk about delegating this kind of thing, hiring other people to create social media for you. If they don’t know what the goal is, then the stuff they create is not likely to produce the result.
If they think the goal is to get likes, then they’re going to create content that is designed to get likes. If the goal is to interact with people, initiate conversations with people who could potentially buy from you, then what we’re doing on social media has to be completely different.
Jay: Yeah, such a great point.
I also think you know, you talked about conversations. It actually has become a very important part of the algorithm that you get comments and more importantly, that you reply to those comments, whether or not they’re important or not. If you could reply in such a way that they respond back then that’s going to increase the algorithm.
So that’s an important part just to get it seen by more people. But then if they’re actually interacting with you, you’re now building the relationship. And I think oftentimes we forget relationships are the most important part of our business.
Anytime I close a sale, when I’m done, I almost feel like I’ve gained a new friend. And in a lot of ways, I have. Somebody that I’m providing a service for, they appreciate that service. And it all starts with a conversation somewhere, like you said, on the phone, in the comments, that’s where it’s all going to begin.
David: Yeah. I think also tracking what’s going on is important, and a lot of people don’t do that. They have a vague idea of, oh, this got a lot of likes. I got a bunch of comments here or there. People seem to like this one or that one.
But none of that is really tangible enough to be able to justify, in some cases, the amount of time that goes into it. So if you track how much time you’re putting into it and you’re able to track how many leads you get as a result of it, and by leads, it may just be something as simple as having a conversation with someone, whether it is in the comments or whether it is through DMing, that type of thing.
Then you’ve got some metrics. You’ve got some basic metrics to look at, to say, “okay, I put an hour and a half into this and I had two people enter into conversations with me.” Is that worthwhile? Well, let’s keep track of those two people. What happened? Were they even prospects? Were you able to get them qualified as quickly as possible?
Were you able to sell to anybody who might have actually been interested in buying? Was it worthwhile? Because if you can make a decent volume sale with an hour and a half involvement on social media, then you can say, all right, that was worthwhile.
If you put in an hour and a half on it and you have no conversations with anyone, then you keep track of it and you say, okay, well how much have I been putting in?
Have I put in 10 hours, 15 hours, a hundred hours? And if so, how many conversations have I engaged in? How many of them led to actual sales conversations and did it generate a single dollar?
And if it didn’t, then you either need to look at, is it the marketing vehicle itself? Is it the social media? Is that the problem?
Am I not connected with the right people? Or am I not saying the right things? Goes back to what we talked about in a lot of these episodes, the MVPs of marketing and sales. Is my messaging right? Am I using the right combination of marketing vehicles and who are the people or prospects that I need to reach.
If things aren’t working, it is always at least one of those things, sometimes more than one.
Jay: Yeah. Such a great point. Tracking is, and, and measuring such an important part about social media. We started doing this a while ago and it never fails. The posts that I thought were not going to go anywhere, they blow up. And the ones where I was so proud of them and they just went nowhere.
And so I have hashtags in my database and anytime something breaks like a thousand views, that to me is something. And I don’t know why, you know, I’ll do three posts, they average 300, and then the next one will have 12,000. And I don’t claim to know what the difference was.
But I can see as I go along that there are trends in the description, you know, in the headline? Sometimes your content is great, but there’s a skillset in just knowing what to title your videos and your posts. That’s why I’ve also become a big fan of focusing on what your skillsets are.
And so I do want to point out, it’s so easy nowadays to find people who are talented and skilled in this area on sites like Fiverr or Upwork.
And so it may just be that you need to hire some help to do this for you, and then you focus on the conversations and on the closing.
David: Yes, and if you are hiring someone, you need to let them know what your priorities are. Because a lot of people who do that sort of work, they think the goal is to get likes and engagement, and to some extent it is engagement, but the engagement needs to lead to the conversations that are going to result in sales.
If they think that you’re going to be happy with just getting views and clicks, then they may be missing the point.
Jay: Yeah. And you know, this happened to me. I ran for public office a couple of times and brought in an advertising firm, and they don’t really take the time to get to know me. And so every time we’d sit down and they’d show me what they’re going to post and stuff like this I’m having to repeat myself.
Like they’re locked into this specific thing. And I’m like, that doesn’t match who I am and who I’m trying to attract. So that’s such an important first step in the process. Who are those customers? What is the message they want to hear? Can we provide valuable content? And how do we get them to get their fingers on that keyboard?
David: Yeah, exactly. So just thinking those things through, recognizing that there should be a goal, there should be some tangible measure measurement. And if you just focus on that, you will probably create better results with your social media.
Jay: Yeah, fantastic discussion, David. How do people find out more?
David: Well, you can go to TopSecrets.com/call, schedule a call with myself or my team if you’re struggling with this.
If you need to be able to get more clients, more quickly, whether it’s on social media or outside of social media, we’d love to have the conversation to see if we can help. So it’s TopSecrets.com/call.
Jay: As always, David, such a pleasure talking to you.
David: Thank you, Jay.
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