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Sep 4, 2015

Build Your Brand by Using Testimonials and Social Media

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Build Your Brand by Using Testimonials and Social Media

If you own a small business or startup, the leads for your first projects have probably come through word of mouth or personal contacts. These early jobs can do wonders to get your company off the ground, but if you don’t formulate a marketing plan, you may soon find that your pool of potential clients is dwindling. Luckily, social media enables anyone to become a publisher and distributor of content.

One of the most effective ways to market your business is to capture client testimonials, states an infographic by WebDAM. It explains that customer testimonials have the highest effectiveness rating for content marketing at 89 percent. Here's a brief outline on how you can get started using testimonials and social media to help build your brand.

Capturing Testimonials

The first thing you need to do when capturing testimonials is reflect on your most successful projects because these clients are the first people you should contact. You also should consider who has the most clout in your community or industry. According to a study by Zendesk, 88 percent of consumers have been influenced by an online review when making a buying decision, so a positive endorsement from a well-regarded person can be a powerful marketing tool. If you’ve done good work for these clients, they’ll typically be more than happy to provide a testimonial for you.

Once you find the right people, ask them for a written statement or schedule a video shoot. If you have a limited time schedule or a shoestring budget, then written content is the way to go. A great example of this type of testimonial can be found on Ritani's engagement ring product page. The testimonials add a little personality to the page and provide ringing endorsements for its products.

However, it has been proven that video is a much more powerful means of conveying a message. A study by B2B Marketing found that video content is six times more effective than the written word. Silverpop is a good example because its clients page offers video testimonials as well as short quotes in case visitors don't have time to watch the entire video.

Distributing Content

One of the most important aspects of social media is to be consistent with your distribution of content. For example, if you have six testimonials, it is much more effective to distribute one testimonial every few days rather than pushing them out all at once. You also should provide different kinds of content, so mix these testimonials in with articles relevant to your industry, an opinion post or a picture of your team at a staff meeting or company outing. It’s OK to be a little informal when on social media, and a good rule of thumb is to stay on topics and discussions that you would feel comfortable addressing if you invited clients and partner companies to your office for an open house or holiday party.

Engaging Your Audience

It’s great to post content on a regular basis, but if you really want to grow an audience on social media, you need to be an active member of your social network. Spend a little time each day commenting on people’s Facebook posts, retweet great content you see on Twitter and get your posts to show up on other people’s feeds by adding their Twitter handle or tagging them on Facebook when you post. The more you engage with people in your immediate social network, the more you appear in the feeds of their contacts, which raises the likelihood of you gaining more followers and receiving more likes.

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