Shop Lebanon, a local digital marketing agency, held a seminar Monday night for small business owners to familiarize them with social media.
Greg Sargent, owner and digital marketing consultant for Shop Lebanon, said the objective for the company was to help small local businesses connect with local shoppers.
The goal of the seminar was to familiarize people with the benefits of using social media outlets, such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram and Vine.
Sargent said in traditional marketing the brand broadcasts its message out to the consumer. However, digital marketing is seen as a two-way conversation where the brand broadcasts its message and the consumer then has something to say or think about it and shares their feelings with their friends and connections.
Sargent also said traditional and digital marketing differed in the way they sent out their messages.
“In traditional marketing you try to get the masses and blast your message and the goal is to hit as many people possible and hope that it sticks, but usually you get a low number of engagement,” Sargent said. “In digital marketing you target your audience and the result is that you engage a very high percent of your audience.”
Sargent said there are many tips business owners should ignore when using social media to market their brand, like to avoid posting content everyday.
“People look for quality content online, not quantity, so over-posting content could turn people off,” Sargent said.
Sargent also said there are several important things to remember when using social media.
“Don’t blow up your consumers' news feeds with constant posts because you will get unfollowed,” Sargent said. “Also, don’t spill the beans all at once because you want to keep your followers engaged throughout the day.”
Taking a hiatus from social media is also something that could turn consumers away from your business, according to Sargent.
Sargent’s “Social Media Strategy 101” begins with publishing content, listening for feedback and engaging with consumers, then adjusting the message.
Ultimately, Sargent said the key to social media is listening and interacting with consumers.
“It’s all about building a relationship by creating easy to consume pieces of content,” he said.