By Mark Wright, Director of Climb Online and a former winner of The Apprentice
During the last decade, social media influencers have transformed the way consumers engage with businesses and brands online.
Now, the launch of a new product or service offering is often deemed to have more clout
when associated with a relevant industry influencer. While many business leaders are frustrated by this trend, others have maximised on the opportunities it offers, making influencer activity a fundamental part of their wider sales and marketing strategy.
What’s more interesting, though, is the fact that influential social media activity provides a greater opportunity for business leaders beyond the realms of endorsement for their product or service. When executed correctly, it can transform business leaders into key people of influence, representative of their brand and industry as a whole.
So how can business leaders become influential via social media? And how does this become an integral part of a sales and marketing strategy? Let’s explore.
If you use social media to tell your followers where you are going, what you are doing and how amazing your business is, they will quickly disengage with your content – and may even unfollow your accounts.
To establish yourself as an authority within your industry, you need to pick two or three core topics to talk about and stick to them.
For example, as Managing Director of digital marketing agency Climb Online, I use my social media to talk about how businesses can generate new leads through effective digital marketing activity, while also touching on entrepreneurship.
These are not only topics that I am incredibly passionate and knowledgeable about, but also onesI feel will connect with a relevant target audience, driving interest and engagement. You need to create consistent and valuable content that attracts stakeholders and keeps them engaged.
The growth in social media has transformed the way stakeholders engage with businesses and brands online, provoking more interest in the real people behind a product or service. This has paved the way for business leaders and entrepreneurs to become more influential within their industries, enabling representatives of even the biggest brands to directly connect with their stakeholders online.
By publishing consistent and authentic content on your personal social media profiles, you can play a direct role in increasing stakeholder engagement and driving resulting
People buy from those they like and trust. This concept has never changed but, thanks to the significant growth in technology, the medium that drives it has.
Business leaders should perceive social media as an opportunity to not only establish themselves as authorities within their industry, but also grow a carefully curated community of readily engaged followers who share your vision for your business, your brand and industry sector.
Remember: when building your profile, it isn’t the number of followers that counts, but rather whether they are likely to turn into customers, in both the short and the long term.