September 14, 2021

How to Promote Your Business Online: A Marketer's Guide to Social Media

Got a new business or product you're launching? Here's our handy guide to effective social media marketing in a few easy steps.

The world of social media marketing today can seem pretty daunting - whether you're on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, the internet is inundated with companies and influencers promoting their products. So, where do you start? How do you make a wave? And what exactly is social media marketing, anyway?

Social media marketing is the process of promoting a product or service via the use of social media networks; you could secure sponsorship deals with social media influencers, for instance, or build up a network of loyal followers on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, etc., by providing a stream of engaging content.

The ability to successfully market via social media has become an increasingly lucrative skill, and the likelihood is, this will only become more valuable with time.

Whether you work for a startup, run a small business of your own, or you're just curious to learn how this modern-day marketing technique works, there are a few easy action-points you can start with for making a splash online.

In this article, we explore four of the best business books that highlight the power of the social network, and the best methods for advertising online in 2021.

Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook - Gary Vaynerchuk

On Uptime

Marketing has been fairly consistent for decades, but the landscape has changed vastly, with technological improvements affecting both marketing abilities and demand. With many struggling to find the top of their game, this book looks at how social media can play an important role in the delivery of a product.

quotation marks99% of people don’t market in the year we actually live in.

Wise words from Gary Vaynerchuk there. So, what key marketing methods can we try in 2021?

The key insight is the power of social media. If your business doesn't have a social media presence, it’s losing a part of its audience. In April 2014, 317 million people had 327 million phones. The statistics are mind boggling; the likes of Facebook, Instagram and TikTok see millions of visits every single day.

Just as the high street will have once been a bustling hive of activity, social media is the new, digital high street.

If you haven’t already, it’s time to digitise your billboards and pamphlets. 

Similarly, it’s important to keep up with the trends. Social media is a blanket term, and what will have been successful once on Instagram may be less successful today thanks to the rising popularity of TikTok. For example, fiction titles published several years ago have enjoyed a fresh wave of popularity - and even re-entered bestseller's list - thanks to being featured on popular new TikTok trend, BookTok.

Selecting the right platform is half the battle, but delivering audience-tailored content is crucial, and is our second insight from this book. The content needs to be relevant to the target audience, and it needs to be native to the platform. The same content copied from Twitter and pasted to Facebook will not be as effective as dedicated platform-specific variants.

Want more lessons from Gary Vaynerchuk? To whet your appetite, you can have a look at our Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook book summary on Uptime.

See You On The Internet - Avery Swartz

On Uptime

For those a little less in touch with social media, it can seem like an alien world or a foreign language. Fortunately, Avery Swartz’s goal is to break it down into simple steps.

quotation marksThere may be a giant voice in your head saying you can’t do this. But, like me, you can do this.

- Avery Swartz

Our first lesson is not to get sidetracked - or overwhelmed - by a plethora of metrics. We have all been the victim of vanity metrics before - how many likes we can get on a photo, for example. But not all the metrics you will see are important. Tie things back to your business goal and keep a clear head when it comes to analytics.

While many think that social media is the new website, this books finds that to be untrue, claiming that most scenarios will require a website.

Whether it’s a transactional site, or solely for information, it’s a good foundation for people’s journeys. Finally, don’t be put off by SEO (search engine optimization). It’s a daunting acronym that many shy away from, but the basics are easy, and you are likely to pick up the rest along the way. Take it one step at a time - basic SEO is better than no SEO.

To see if this book is one worth investing in, you can have a look at our See You On The Internet summary on Uptime.

Growth Hacker Marketing - Ryan Holiday

On Uptime

Ryan Holiday helped authors like Tucker Max, Robert Greene, and Tim Ferriss to make their books bestsellers, so it’s no wonder this book is such a popular marketing one.

Early marketing consisted of getting a product in front of as many eyeballs as possible. Today, marketing must be built into the product on an array of levels. Startups are notorious for rushing out a first generation product, gathering swathes of data, and improving the product time and time again. Surprisingly, this isn’t a bad thing: it’ll keep them coming back for more. You can do this by targeting a small group of early adopters. This exclusivity will build a brand in its own right.

Make your content shareable.

Finally, allow the customers to do the hard work for you and find a way for them to market the product on your behalf. Make it shareable, and make it shared. Offer incentives - a free month on a subscription or a free trial of a product for each referral. Reward and loyalty schemes ensure that customers don’t leave.

Interested in learning more? You can have a look at this book's key lessons in our Growth Hacker Marketing summary on Uptime.

Subscribed - Tien Tzuo

On Uptime

Building on the concept we touched upon above, Tzuo explores the positive impacts of a subscription-based model for businesses. 

quotation marksWhether it’s GE, Amazon, or Uber, they are all succeeding because they recognised that we now live in a digital world, and in this new world, customers are different.

- Tien Tzuo

Many learn about the industrial revolution in school. These days, it could be said that we're at the tail end of the technological revolution - but did you know that there is a business revolution happening right now, too? Over the last few years we've transitioned from a product-driven society to a service-driven one. In fact, Tien Tzuo swears by the subscription model, so much so that he claims that only the adopters of this will have the most successful businesses.

What is the subscription model?

Customers love the subscription model because it means there is no ownership, so no maintenance involved. Spotify, for example, gives access to millions of songs without the need to store thousands of CDs. 

Rather than finding a new gap in the market, try to convert your existing product or service using a subscriber base. Tzuo says this will likely be more effective because it gives the customer what they want.

Follow the PADRE method:
  1. Pipeline: Through the use of marketing, spread the news about your new plans and upcoming features.
  2. Acquire: Gather knowledge and information about what your customers want and how to streamline their experience.
  3. Deploy: Make the customer’s journey painless and quick.
  4. Run: People love reaction, so keeping a slick journey with tip-top customer service and communications is crucial
  5. Expand: While retaining your existing clients, seek to entice more.

Focus on your People, the Product, and Money, for all of this to work smoothly: Tien Tzuo remembers this with the handy acronym PPM.

If you'd like to explore these lessons in more detail, you can look at our Subscribed book summary over on Uptime.

We started this article getting to grips with social media, before exploring what it is that really makes a business pop: subscribers. If you want to learn more about this, or in fact any other topic, download Uptime and search through hundreds of our 5-minute book, course, and documentary Knowledge Hacks.

Follow us & share





Turn your downtime into Uptime

Want to use your time wisely? Learn faster, make quick and easy actions, and see the benefits in no time.