3 Social Media Marketing Examples to Consider for Your Business

CUSTOMIZE THESE APPROACHES TO YOUR INDUSTRY AND COMPANY GOALS

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social networks can be great tools to promote your business. Yet social media marketing isn't a one-size-fits-all strategy: The most effective approach depends on the industry you're in, the customers you're trying to reach and the business goals you want to achieve.

Here's a look at how companies in three different industries — healthcare, professional services and manufacturing — could use social media to achieve a specific business goal.

Healthcare provider: Connect with patients
An orthopedic practice wants to improve communications with patients before and after a visit and to promote the practice to prospective patients. It could launch a social campaign and help reach its business goals by taking the following steps:

  • Create two-minute videos of each physician introducing themself, his or her specialties and patient-care philosophy and post the videos on the practice's YouTube channel. Then, email new patients a link to the appropriate video before their first visit with the physician.
  • Use TwitterFacebook and Google+ to post stories on maintaining joint health, living with arthritis, recent medical breakthroughs, new services offered by the practice and other topics of interest to the patient base. Encourage patients to share content with their friends.
  • Invite patients to use Twitter or Facebook to ask pre- or post-visit questions.
  • Ask for testimonials from patients to share via Facebook. Also create short patient video testimonials to post on YouTube.

Accounting firm: Find new clients
An accounting firm wants to grow its client base. Social media could help it find and engage with prospects who are dissatisfied with their current provider. Here is how the strategy could work:

  • Set up company FacebookGoogle+Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.
  • Create a section of the company website that houses useful content, such as tax credit eligibility worksheets, benefits plan cost calculators, year-end tax prep checklists and client testimonials or case studies that can help build trust with future customers.
  • Use social media monitoring tools (you could start with Google Alerts and SocialMention) to track discussions related to business tax preparation, employee benefits plans and other practice specialties.
  • Look for companies asking questions about those topics or seeking help finding a new provider. Then, join the conversations by offering to share links to helpful content on your website.
  • Follow up by sharing an accountant's name and contact information and inviting the prospect to continue discussing his or her individual needs.

Manufacturer: Become an industry expert resource
A manufacturing company wants to market itself based on customer service and industry expertise — instead of price. Here's how the company could combine a content marketing strategy with social media to position itself as an expert resource for customers and help reach its business goals:

  • Set up company FacebookGoogle+Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.
  • Promote a weekly "Ask the Experts" feature in all social media channels, inviting customers and prospects to share product or process-related questions. Tap your company's engineers, product specialists and other expert resources to respond personally to these questions with specific advice for that customer's or prospect's individual challenge.
  • Create a LinkedIn group for your industry if there isn't one, or create groups for particular customer niches that the company is targeting.
  • Launch a company blog (WordPress.com or Blogger are good places to help you get started) to generate useful content each week, such as analysis of industry trends, customer case studies, how-to articles and recaps of important events or trade shows. Use these articles to start conversations with the LinkedIn group and ask company subject matter experts to share that content with their networks.
  • Invite social media followers to suggest topics for monthly webinars or Google+ Hangouts On Air that feature company experts describing how to solve specific problems or use the company's products in different applications.