Home – New Forums Marketing mastery How Valuable is a Follower?

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  • #993472
    Stuart B
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    Hey guys, many SMB’s I deal with are obsessed with gaining more and more followers on social media.

    [ATTACH=full]1014[/ATTACH]

    The reason generally stems from a fundamental lack of understanding about why SM works for business. They make the mistake of thinking that having more followers will somehow magically translate into more customers but that’s not really how it works.

    Facebook is the most common example where you see a FB page with 100,000 people following, presumably as a result of an aggressive competition or advertising budget, but then when they post something they get 1 or 2 likes. It’s sad, it looks like a ghost town.

    The problems with always chasing followers (especially on FB) is that at some point you’ll feel the need to pay to boost posts to reach all of them and this is a problem if you don’t plan on that budget. So in many cases you’re actually better off to have a small group of followers which you can reach easily, or if you do want to push an important post into their feed it only costs you a minimal amount of money.

    So why do people get obsessed with follower counts? Well generally it’s a d*ck measuring thing. They see their competition with 5,000 followers and think “my business looks small compared to theirs” so they feel the need to catchup. Not realising that their 5,000 followers probably delivers almost no value to their business.

    What’s the solution?
    The first step I recommend (for facebook) is to actually hide your follower count. There’s a button where those tabs can be rearranged so it doesn’t show up. That way you won’t obsess over it, and your customers won’t see it either unless they go searching (which they probably won’t).

    The next step is to remember that you’re trying to engage with your followers over time. This is a nurturing marketing strategy where you provide GENUINE social interaction and create relationships and then the sales come after that.

    The value of a follower?
    The first step is to figure out the value of a customer for the lifetime of your customer relationship.

    Then you can start to figure out the kind of conversion rate you have from SM follower, to paying customer. Once you have some kind of a baseline performance level, you can start to trying to optimise your activity to improve it over time.

    #1191809
    Gizmo
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    Thanks for sharing.
    Interesting stuff.

    I’m learning lots in this area right now by just getting in and doing it.
    No hard facts I can share right now as I’m a noob in this domain.

    #1191810
    Stuart B
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    Good for you mate. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t hit the spot first time around. Many people fail the first time and then spend the rest of their days declaring “social media is a waste of time”.

    #1191811
    Johny
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    Stuart, I am at the very early stages of understanding social media and the dunce cap is on when discussing such issues. But I also realise I need to take a more active interest in it.

    To be honest, I am still at the stage where I don’t really understand the significance of social media. By that I mean, two things:-

    1. For all the talk of facebook, twitter, etc. I still don’t understand how we are better off because of them. I know we are told we are, but I don’t know why we are. Seems to me we are more inundated with rubbish than anything else. Having said that, I have gotten quite a benefit in using LinkedIn, so I can see my comments as being somewhat contradictory. Maybe the difference is that I see LI as a specific business related networking tool (not a sales medium), and look at the others in a different way.

    2. Social media has created a whole industry of people dedicated to finding ways of making money from offering related services. Not sure that is necessarily a good thing in lots of cases and buying followers would be a case in point.

    That being said, I relate a lot of what happens in social media to how it happens in the non digital world. So for example, business is still about developing relationships and building trust. One thing now though is that people don’t really have the patience to build that relationship, and my view is that business suffers as a result.

    As far as a REAL follower goes, I don’t necessarily see them as a future customer (although they could be), but more of an advocate for you. If they have generally followed you, there must be a reason they did. And that for me is the strength of a follower. Then it becomes a matter of how to keep them interested.

    But certainly I’d rather have a few good followers than many who provide no real benefit.

    #1191812
    Gizmo
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    [USER=34822]@Johny[/USER] well written and I think I am finding the same so far.

    I’m also amazed at how much time it takes.

    My reccomendation to anyone solo’er looking to do this, pick one Social Media channel and do it well. Doing several is a time consuming processing even with tools that post the same information everywhere. So I’m guessing my solo’ers don’t have the time to dedicate to many channels.

    Lucky for me I have a team now so I can focus on this area.

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