When it comes to your social media activities, you have so many different options on how to manage it. On one extreme, you can hire an agency to do it all for you. On the other, you can muddle through it yourself. Of course, which option you choose depends on your budget, and for most startups, your budget is zero to almost zero.
San Francisco-based Wildfire totally gets it. The company started out working with small businesses and has grown into a social marketing suite that brings together all the elements you need – promotions, page manager, messenger, and analytics – to help you grow, engage, and monetize your audience.
What makes Wildfire different from other social marketing companies is the fact that it is technology company first and foremost – and it was not started as a standalone company. Victoria Ransom and Alain Chuard (a former pro-snowboarder) co-founded the global travel experience company, Access Trips, and, as Emily Eberhard, Wildfire’s Director of Communications, explained,
“When Facebook landing pages were announced, Victoria and Alain saw a big opportunity to promote their business. Looking around the market, there wasn’t a good solution available, so they built their own sweepstakes app. People started asking for it, so what turned out as a one-off solution turned into a company. Like any good startup founders, they listened to the market and pivoted.”
Because, as Eberhard put it, “Social is about a steady drumbeat of engagement,” she and Wildfire’s community manager Maya Grinberg offered some great tips on effectively using social media marketing when you are super crunched on time:
- You need to answer the comments people leave, because people are expecting a two way conversation.
- When you advertise on Facebook, send people to an appropriate landing page within your Facebook page rather than driving them to your website.
- Give people visuals to look at and connect with.
- Post at least 3x per week, during weekdays. Post about your business: a link about your industry, breaking news happening in your industry, helpful tip or advice, or, even better, ask questions to engage your audience in a two-way dialogue.
- Try to humanize your brand every once in a while; show them what you are doing. Post a picture of your people, show something on your desk (i.e. the first dollar bill that your business ever made etc). Post photos when you can.
- Create a simple promotion and run it in conjunction with Facebook ads. Drive ads to those campaigns.