One of the most common questions business owners ask me is this: How fast will I get results?
The question comes in many variations:
> Do I have to waste time getting likes or followers?
> Do I have to post regularly?
> Do I really have to respond to questions and comments?
> When will I see results, and how can I measure them?
The people asking these questions are good business people, and they should be concerned about the amount of time it takes to develop their audience before they start seeing results, but there is often not enough thought put into the value of the audience they’re creating for social media success.
The most successful long-term social media marketers think like good farmers.
My roots are in farming. I grew up in Grand Mound, a small town in rural Iowa where my grandparents were farmers. I spent time on the farm throughout the year.
I learned that the first step in being a successful farmer is having good land to work. Land that is flat, drains well, and is filled with nutrients will yield the best crops.
But, having good land without putting work into it will still not produce an abundant harvest.
Farmers know that to harvest a good crop in the fall, they must plant in the spring.
They know if they don’t invest in the equipment, fuel, seed, and labor required to plant the crops they’ll have nothing to harvest in the fall.
Visit farm country in planting season and see all the activity. Farmers are working from dawn to dusk and beyond.
The next step is making sure that the fields are fertilized and the weeds are kept out.
Farmers continue to nurture their crops until the harvest.
So how does farming relate to social media marketing?
First, you need to find the right audience. That is the good land. You must find people who need your product or service and who are interested in what you can do for them.
Once you think you have the right audience, you need to prepare the land. This means helping the audience members see the value in your products and services. Why should they spend money with you instead of someone else—or spend their money at all? After all, they have survived without you so far.
Many businesses expect people to buy from them without putting any effort into planting and nurturing the seeds. I’m going to give you nothing except a sales letter, or I’ll share one piece of content that tells a little about what I’m selling, then I expect you to buy from me. No time is allowed for the seed to grow, or it’s forced to grow too fast.
The challenge is that with the hype of many who use social media and others who promote social media, people get the idea that all you have to do is put any old ad in front of strangers and, voila, you’ll have customers beating your door down to buy from you.
That is the wrong approach. You need to nurture your new prospects (seeds) with good information. You can do this on the social media platform you’re using and, if possible, you can add e-mail to it as well.
As you strengthen this relationship with your customers, their trust in you grows, and you have the opportunity to offer them products and services for sale that they are more likely to buy.
The goal with every one of your early interactions is to give your new prospects value in excess of what they expect so that as you offer items for sale at higher and higher prices, they find exceptional value in what you’re selling and are willing to trust you with more and more of their money and, even more important, more of their attention.
This process takes time, but as you implement and fine tune it, the time required decreases.
What I’ve seen is that every month this system is implemented, the time from planting to harvest is shorter, and the yield from the harvest is greater.
If you want to find out more about what it takes to build this fertile audience, please schedule a meeting to talk to Brian by clicking here, or e-mail him at [email protected] to schedule a time to talk.
Go Social Experts offers services that help you learn how to do this. Then we will help you set up your system so all you have to do is repeat the process to continue growing your audience.
Have a great week!