Let’s start with what B2B social media strategy works – in general, that is. I was looking for a universal social media image for this blog on a search for advertising agency social media. I found this blog post’s lead image by searching Google. They took me to Anchor Media’s long-ago “Starting Out On Social” blog post. A decent post. Anchor’s blog post and tagged image delivered awareness of them. So… social + SEO = works – some of the time. But, you already know that.
NOTE: I am about to build on the blog post I originally wrote in 2014. Much of what I wrote then still works. The key difference is that we are now all much more bombarded with incoming info and thought leadership material. Barraged, baby. So, before I go back to 2014…
It Is 2020 – Does Social Media Even Work Anymore (As In Drive Incoming) For Advertising Agency Business Development?
Back to my main question: “Which Social Media Strategy Is Best For Advertising Agency New Business?” I am not going to bullshit you. There is no perfect social media platform for advertising agency new business. Why? Cause ya know… the devil is in the details (and, your very own objectives and desire to keep at it.)
As mentioned above, I originally wrote this very viewed blog post back in 2014. So, I am not going to change much. But, I will update it.
When I wrote this back in the good old days, blog posts by ad agencies had not yet exploded; Twitter posts had not exploded; Instagram was not yet a smash… and on. Here are some of those “we are now bombarded” stats.
- How many blog posts are there today? Here is just one-directional figure: there are “like” over 2 million blog posts daily – out of 1.7 billion websites. You think your ad agency can stand out?
- There are over 500 million tweets per day.
- There are over 5 million businesses on Instagram every day.
- There seem to a billion LinkedIn posts a day. I have close to 4,000 “advertising people” connections. Yet when i post on LinkedIn I get maybe 80 individual post views. Pay per play baby. Not so organic these days.
- I made this number up. But, hey, it makes a point regardless — There are 4,200 new advertising and digital agency blog posts every day.
Do you get the idea here? You are kinda fucked if you think that your blogs, tweets, etc are gonna get noticed. You are competing with other, probably good at SEO agencies.
The best I can do is to tell you what my personal experience has been. First, here are my social media objectives.
- Primary objective #1: Make being unignorable a serious objective. Passivity does not work.
- Primary objective #2: Get qualified leads. In my case, my current target market includes small to medium-sized advertising, design and PR agencies that need some help, some spark, some insightful thinking and an action-oriented plan to help them build a more effective business development plan. These agencies are located anywhere in the world.
- Be efficient: Test. Pay attention to each social media’s analytics and do more of what is working. Figure out why some platforms are not working. Use automated systems to have my blog posts run on LinkedIn, Twitter and Google+.
- Be productive: Blog / post / tweet / Insta / newsletter often. Plus really use LinkedIn’s tools. Pay them. It is now pay to play.
OK… here is my take on social media and advertising agencies.
Mas… Und Mas… 2020.
If you pay attention to one point…………. If you write me-to stuff, stop it. Same-old stuff is same-old. Unfortunately, I see this happening every day at too many agencies.
A tool for you: The only way you can figure this out is to look at your competitor’s blog posts / tweets, etc. And use tools like Ubersuggset.
Yes, inbound stuff still works. But, you better work it. But do not count on it.
To get past the barrage of messaging do the following.
- Have a smart ad agency positioning. Sounds easy, right? If so, then, why do most agencies wallow in sameness? Please read this.
- Be everywhere a potential client might look for you. Search for you if you did not know you exist.
- Have a website that stands out. You will only get 8 seconds. Most agency websites are a bit lame. Me-too, too.
- Have a robust Account-Based Marketing program. Target your targets.
- !!!!!! – Make business development a core client of your agency.
Back To 2014 – My Original Post
I am using the infographic below as a guide. This is my CliffsNotes / ADHD take on social media for advertising agency new business. Yup, I go way deeper with clients. Funny, you’ll see Google+ on this list. But, nothing about podcasting. This is an indicator that the social media landscape is not static.
Twitter is easy to use. All my blog posts go up automatically. I re-Tweet easily to help bulk up my content and to make friends. From time to time I use Twitter’s advertising tools to grow my Follower list. Things to keep in mind: Pay attention to what your audience wants (this is true for all social media, you know this), Tweet a few times a day, re-tweet, use the @ to let others know that you are alive (a nice simple new business tool), use hashtags, use one or more Twitter analytics tools…. the list is growing every day. Search on Google. Here is a decent post from KISSmetrics.
Need some Twitter tools? Here is my master list.
I use Pinterest for my advertising agency directory. It gets me some attention, Google likes it, its audience is growing and I use an outsourced Odesk buddy to keep it up to date (are you in it? If not, let me know.) Pinterest is growing fast and few agencies use it well. In fact, because of this, I am extremely well ranked on Pinterest for searches for ad agencies. Here is a recent post on this subject: Why Are Aren’t Advertising Agencies Using Pinterest? Yes, I have gotten leads from using Pinterest.
Sure it’s huge. But, I don’t use it for new business. It just doesn’t feel right for a B2B guy. BUT… I recently had a post go very viral on Facebook (hundreds of incoming to my blog.) I think that it was because the post was passed across the Saatchi & Saatchi and M&C Saatchi worlds since it was about a lost Adidas pitch when I was at Saatchi London and screwed up royally with the brothers. The post: The Worst Advertising Agency Presentation – Ever . That said, it is easy to automatically send your blog posts to your Facebook page. But, please don’t mix them with pictures of your poodle. Figure out – is your Facebook page for business or pleasure. Or, maybe its function is to bolster agency culture or, if you are large, inter-agency communications.
OK, one more point. You can way lost, as in, never ever seen in the world wide world of Facebook’s timeline. Here is what Razorsocial’s Ian has to say…
You share your content to your Facebook page.
And what happens?
Most people don’t see your content.
The latest stats show an average of 1 to 2%
This is getting dangerously close to Zero per cent.
OK, one more one more point. Test targeted post boosting on Facebook. It is a low-cost test.
Nope. Not for me. But this gigantic platform could be for you if you use it for agency culture or if you want to own a product or service category via thought -leadership. Imagine that you are an agency that wants a parakeet account. Then Instagram the hell out of parakeet photos. I bet that the marketing assistant for the I Love Parakeets Brand bird food is trolling “parakeets” on Instagram. He will see you and track you down. Voila, your parakeet account.
I am not sure I have Google+ figured out. Do you? Does it work? Is it gonna make it? Will Google finally toss in the towel? Who knows. But, again, just make sure you are on it (that is if you want Google SERP love and who does not?) The “web” says that Google+ is the number two social media platform. Possible? Maybe due to Google’s promotional power. Again, just be on it. This post will be – automatically when I hit publish on this WordPress blog. Also, use Google+ Communities to move your content out.
Ok, Ok, LinkedIn
This is the king of the B2B social media strategy universe.
You know it but I am baffled every day that more advertising agencies have not figured out how to squeeze every last drop of power out of this primarily business tool. I am about to really dig in when I publish my book on agency pitching. LinkedIn will be a backbone social media tool. I have a lot of posts on using LinkedIn. If you have the time, dig in. Here are the top 6 reasons to use LinkedIn’s paid premium services….
- It is loaded with 240 million of your new business prospects.
- You can do advanced searches on member profiles.
- You can message anyone in the LinkedIn community using the InMail messaging service.
- You can send more introductions than basic.
- You can see who viewed your profile.
- You can publish to the universe of LinkedIn users just like Mark Cuban.
There are more reasons. Just do it.
Social media is way demanding. In addition, to basing your choice of platform on your business objectives and target markets, make sure that you select platforms that you can feed weekly. There is nothing worse than an empty Twitter feed. OK, there is worse. I have seen lots of ad agencies that include an out of date Twitter feed on their website. Wha?!
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