Drive Inbound Efficiency with Social Direct Response

facebook, social media, twitter

October 7, 2014 by

The number one objective for inbound marketing efforts in the year ahead is to increase conversion rates, according to an August 2014 survey by Ascend2/Research Partners. The same survey also found that 90% of companies are now integrating social media and other marketing tactics for inbound marketing purposes. Still, the most challenging obstacle to inbound marketing success reported was the lack of an effective strategy. Some brands and businesses have wisely turned to social media as a direct funnel to sales, creating a lead generation mechanism that collects data and directs traffic to the website at the same time. Yet many are still unsure of how effective or measurable this tactic could be for them.

social media stats

Social media marketing efficiency and efficacy can often get lost in the shuffle of your day-to-day efforts: earning customers’ attention, producing interesting content, and making sure users can find you easily online. Here are three distinct ways marketers can make sure they are exploiting social and inbound to their utmost:

Step 1: Earn Attention with Sincerity

Be genuine. Have a genuine voice and message that consumers will relate to. If the goal is to convert customers from social properties, then your brand should have a genuine message, creating a platform where consumers can easily show interest and intent.

Related Class: Defining Social Media Marketing

For example, this summer Cinnamon Toast Crunch  ran a sampling campaign through social media, with the goal of getting samples into the hands of their most engaged followers. Rather than pushing the product on all consumers, they ask their fans if they want it, and give them a direct way to raise their hand and ask for it. Consumer-powered offers that a brand can use to boost conversions and benefit their followers create a win-win situation.

Step 2: Get Smart Conversions

Use social as a point of conversion. Merge your social and content marketing, giving consumers a way to opt-in via social platforms. Try using unique content opportunities – behind the scenes, newsletter sign-ups, exclusive opportunities, and the like. Since you are likely already producing this type of content, don’t work for the easy ‘like,’ but instead aim to get to know consumers better. Gather information (email address, interests, feedback, etc.) that will help you further the conversation with the consumer as they progress down the path to becoming a loyal customer.

Related Class: Social Promotions Foundations

A great example: adidas soccer gave their social followers a first chance to win an Argentina Messi jersey during a season match. Rather than creating a landing page, they gave fans this opportunity directly in social, reaching them where many were already talking about the game. This way they were able to capture the data of fans who were specifically interested in a particular product, all while creating buzz around a timely soccer event in exchange for an item of high value to its audience.

Step 3: Be Action-Oriented

Create programs that incorporate social actions into your broader inbound marketing activities. When you give the power to the consumer to take action for an offer within the channel (social media) that they like to use, the consumer is able to easily engage, immediately seeing the benefit from your offers. No pushy sales pitch necessary. Simultaneously, brands see their marketing message move from private to public spaces (i.e. from email or direct mail to Facebook or Twitter).

For example, TaylorMade Golf activated their email marketing promotion by telling consumers to enter to get a sample via social media. This allows marketing messages in an offline channel to be actionable for the consumer, no matter where they see a marketing message. It also gives the brand the ability to reach out to the qualified consumer and ask, “Would you like to try?” and also the ability to then fulfill those requests. Importantly, it also allows marketers to move the conversation to a consumer’s interest stream, wherever that may be, so there aren’t any major hurdles between the consumer and the action.

Twitter marketing

While there may be a turf war of sorts going on over social media within marketing departments everywhere, at the end of the day, social can drive interest, intent and conversion. Inbound marketers should have a role in ensuring that social media is part and parcel of their marketing mix, working in coordination with brand marketers and direct outbound marketers. The more concerted the effort, the higher the likelihood that social marketing efforts will drive distinct, measurable business outcomes.

Interested in using social to reel in better, more detailed leads? Watch this class, Social Media Tools to Build Your Audience, where you'll learn the most efficient social media tactics to increase your online presence and simultaneously drive response from your target demographics.

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