Plant Value, Reap Harvest - The Social Media Game

Gathering and engaging a social media audience has become increasingly important to small business marketing. We already know how interconnected content marketing and social media channels are, and that building your presence from the ground up can and will produce more hits on your website.

This comes from online perusers stumbling across something you've shared that they find of interest, and most likely have done so more than once, so that they decided you're a source worth subscribing to.

Step 1: Plant seeds of value

People don't subscribe to Facebook pages or follow Twitter feeds unless there is something of value there to entice them.  Say you have a health food store.  If you're interested in targeting those interested in a healthy lifestyle in your area, you're going to want to give them something that provides direct, personalized value to that group of people.

In other words, it is one thing to say. "Hey, look at us! We offer things that make you healthy!"  It is a whole other thing to say, "Here is some great information about this healthy living product that can improve your life."

The prospective follower will respond much more positively to the second tactic, as it provides something of immediate value, rather than an up-front commercial.

Step 2: Nurture your social media feeds with continued value

Now that you've identified your audience and are targeting your posts towards them with items of value, nurture your feed to create a lasting impact.  Continue to fuel your page with diverse and specifically targeted posts, and you'll begin to see a draw.

For many customers, one glimpse of valuable content that you've posted just isn't enough to convince them to follow you.  It takes consistent, impactful posts to make your business news feed a place of interest.

When a customer does land on your news feed, they want to see a bunch of recent, diverse, and interesting material that convinces them at a glance that you're a feed that provides information that they're interested in hearing about.

Step 3: Harvest - turn follows into leads

Hooray!  You've drawn in your audience, cultivated your relationship with them by becoming a source that they trust, and they deeply appreciate the information you're giving.  Now, it is time to convert your loyal followers into customers.

It is time to put up some "call to action" posts - your harvest. (Remember: The timing must be right for these types of posts.  Harvest too early, before you've truly gained trust with your audience, and you will be disappointed.)

Harvest posts pertain directly to a product or service you offer.  Your health store may post something like: "This herbal supplement will help you reach your health goals in under a month.  See how: www.[yourwebsite].com" ; "Only 3 days left to use our 50% code on any item!  Click here to learn more." ; "Interested in learning how to prepare healthier meals? Sign up here for our weekly cooking classes!"

IMPORTANT: NEVER convert to only harvest posts!  For every harvest post, make sure it is tempered by at least 5 value posts to avoid losing any followers.

Interested in a social media strategy, but unsure where to start?  Send us an email or give us a call.  We'll be happy to help!

Jason Finn

Founder & Chief Geek

Jason has nearly 20 years of consulting experience, predominantly in the technology space. Most recently he was the COO and Director of Technology for Rich Casto & Company, a national training and consulting organization in the real estate industry.
As a consultant for IBM, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Envision Consulting Group (now IMS Health), Jason has served clients of all sizes, including Big Pharma, Fortune 500, and Global 1000 companies:

  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • AOL (America Online)
  • Astellas Pharmaceuticals
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ford Motor Credit
  • Wockhardt USA (formerly Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals)
  • Norwich Union
  • PNC Bank
  • Reynolds and Reynolds

Sarunas Budrikas

Creative Director

Sarunas is a web design and development expert with hundreds of successful projects in his portfolio. He is passionate about delivering extraordinary user experiences for every client and consistently goes above and beyond everyone’s expectations. As an SEO expert and strategist, he can optimize your website, or app, to get the most out of it, day in and day out. Sarunas holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kaunas Technology University, in Lithuania. Sarunas now lives in Chicago, and calls it home.

Alexandra Olsavsky

Client Experience Specialist

Alex specializes in content generation and social media promotion for Geek | Chicago clients, helping to solidify their presence in the online community. This includes blog writing, graphic design, co-ordination and design of weekly newsletters, and active engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Outside of Geek, Alex is a classically-trained soprano who professionally performs around the city of Chicago (most recently with the Chicago Baroque Band, and with the Rolling Stones for their "50 and Counting" tour).