Social Media is a powerful and delicate marketing tool. Using it can grow a broker’s business and client base, as well as providing a useful communication tool between them and their current and past clients. However, understanding the techniques and skills required can make or break a social media plan. Here are 5 key steps to understanding not only how to use a social marketing strategy, but how to succeed with it.
Why Social Media? Social Media is significantly cheaper than a traditional marketing campaign. Where radio time, television ad space, and print marketing require constant physical materials or the purchase of an airspace. A digital marketing plan, however, simply requires access to the internet. A broker can create profiles for their business on all of the major social media platforms, free of charge. However, it requires that the services they provide, and the content they use to sell it, are good enough to rise above the rest of the companies using them.
This dilemma of being drowned out by other companies is solved with social media’s unique ability to target viewers. When creating a digital ad campaign, there is the unique ability to target who sees the communication based on location, field, and economics. This allows the broker to successfully target the people who are most likely to respond to them.
The other major benefit of Social Media advertising is that it helps brokers connect to the next generation of business owners, many of whom have grown up in the social media biome. Many millennials, who are just beginning to start their own companies and are looking for assistance in financing, will go to social media as their first choice when learning about the various brokers in their market. Having a great digital presence could make or break those opportunities.
Understand what social media actually is (and what it isn’t). Social media is a tool for developing relationships. People are using their unique profiles to express themselves in a way the physical world doesn’t allow. Think of it as a bullhorn for blasting a marketing message and you won’t have followers. No one wants to inundated with ads. There’s a reason commercial breaks only last a few minutes at a time. For a company it is best to think of social media as a tool for helping, educating, and entertaining their audience. Post unique content that people enjoy and your number of followers, and potential clients, will grow.
Know where to play. Not every social network will be a good fit for every company. A Doctors office isn’t going to get much usage out of an Instagram account, for example. For loan brokers, the best options are generally Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, each of which has their own unique benefits. Twitter is a short form microblogging site, which makes it perfect for blasting quick updates. Facebook has a bigger reach and allows for connections between individuals and corporations on a bigger level. And LinkedIn is designed to allow for professional connections, which makes it ideal for connecting with small business and their owners. If you are targeting only one social platform as a broker, LinkedIn is typically your best avenue.
Post great content. As we mentioned above, social media is about building connections and expression. People share what they like or find enlightening. Posting educational and entertaining content will attract more attention than a new posting selling your services. Don’t make your social profile a sales brochure about you. Put yourself in your audience’s shoes and post what you would want to read. Build relationships and trust. Talk about the people who you work with. Only about 10% of the content should be sales focused. The rest should be used to present yourself as an expert and as a person people can trust. Share success stories of companies who you assisted in getting a loan, or the family opening their own small business
Be an expert. Social media allows the broker to share knowledge and experience, while not spending as much as a normal marketing plan. Sharing your knowledge allows a potential client to see you as a resource, not just a business connection. Post news articles you find interesting, write blogs about your personal viewpoints and allow your audience to gain insight into what makes you the best choice to help them achieve their goals.
Social media can seem daunting. But with enough knowledge, a little creativity, and skill it can become one of the best marketing tools. To learn more about digital marketing for loan brokerages, and how to work most efficiently with financing clients, talk to us today.