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Need Now vs May Need In The Future
Social media has taken over, so why are we still being persuaded that our website is the place we want everyone to go?
When I originally set up in business, I saw what was happening with social media and how it was changing the world from a 'sell to' process into a 'buy from' one. Being an entrepreneur - and someone who doesn't like to do what everyone else is doing - I realised this shift was happening quite early on and built sblogit.com to fill the need.
You see, this social media 'buy from' process can also be called 'relationship marketing' and it's about building trust with those you connect with and helping them to remember you, so when they're ready to switch into the 'need now' mindset they'll remember you.
"It's no longer about exclusively driving traffic to your website it's about driving traffic to your brand, wherever that may be!"
When I was a web designer in the 90s we didn't have social media, so our websites were all we had and we wanted it to get as much exposure as possible. But things have moved on and it surprises me that many SEO experts and social media specialists are still selling their services on the premise of driving as much traffic as possible to' websites.
Out of everyone who you are connected to, a tiny percentage of them are in the 'need now' mindset where you can 'sell to' them. Classically, those people would use Google to find products and services like yours then they'd check out a number of suppliers and go with the one that gives them either the best price, the best service or both.
That's where your website comes in. That's what SEO is for - to ensure a good ranking for your website so you've got a better chance of being seen by people searching for products and services just like yours.
But the vast majority of the people you are connected to - clients, prospects, friends, family, networkers - are in a 'don't need now but may need in the future' mode. After all, why would they like your Facebook business page, follow you on Twitter or connect to you on LinkedIn otherwise? They're interested ... but not right now, so you have to work the 'buy from' model with them.
"Why are businesses constantly selling
on social media?"
Why are they shouting about offer after special offer or sharing their website address time and time again? If a business was constantly trying to sell to you via Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, how long would it before you unfriended them, unfollowed them or unconnected? You'd get fed up with the constant bombardment of sales messages, wouldn't you?
A real-world example may be walking through a bazaar on your holidays and having shopkeepers running up to you and shoving products in your face. It's certainly happened to me and it's bloody annoying!
Here's quite a frightening nugget of information for you. On Facebook, people can still like your business page, but tell their news feed to hide all posts from it! The scariest thing about this is that the algorithms of the Facebook news feed will automatically downvote your posts for everyone else connected to you as well!
There's a good possibility that your constant sales messages are not being seen by anyone if enough other people have got annoyed and hidden you in their news feed! You may have a few thousand likes on your Facebook business page, but if each post is only being seen by just a few people, was it even worth you even posting?
"On social media, people want
to learn new stuff!"
They want to read things of value, they want to learn about the companies they eventually buy from and they want to trust them, knowing that a company that offers them useful nuggets of information they can implement in their own lives is a company that they will possibly want to do business with at some point in the future. Nothing's guaranteed is it?
Massive companies have realised this already. Coca-Cola publicly stated that when they post a picture of a can of Coke, it doesn't drive traffic to their website and it certainly doesn't increase immediate sales. But they still spend a ton of cash on their social media because when someone is thirsty, they want them to go push the Coke button on the vending machine!
For them, it's about brand awareness - being 'top of mind' of the thirsty person when they shift from the 'don't need now but may need in the future' to the 'need now' mindset. That's what social media is all about - brand awareness; authority, trust, knowledge and understanding.
Everything Coca-Cola does on social media is about getting you to remember them when you're standing in front of that vending machine clutching a couple of pound coins. Push the Coke button, not the Pepsi one!
"If a billion-dollar corporate outfit isn't directly selling on social media, why are you trying to?"
Thankfully, innovative business owners and other entrepreneurs are starting to shift from 'sell to' mode into 'buy from' and they're realising that building brand awareness, creating trust and authority and keeping themselves and their company in the minds of people they are connected to on social media is all important.
They get that it's now about "driving traffic to your brand" and that 'need now' people search Google and visit websites and 'don't need now but may need in the future' people want to build a relationship with a brand on social media because there's a good chance they'll want the company's products and services in future.
And the way these future-looking companies do it? By putting a blog at the heart of their social media activities and using it to share their knowledge and wisdom; to give that vast majority of 'don't need now but may need in the future' people a reason to remember them!
There's certainly room for both a website and a blog in this day and age, isn't there? And your blog will NOT reduce the traffic to your website because different people are interested in your blog and different people are interested in your website. It will actually increase traffic to your website.
"Have a blog and a website and watch
them work together!"
Realise that different types of people will visit each one. Know that 'don't need now but may need in the future' people will not necessarily visit your website and 'need now' people will not necessarily visit your blog!
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About Steffi Lewis ...