Social’s buzz has been a bit dampened in recent months as the honeymoon with Facebook and Linkedin starts to cool down for investors. However, the relevance of the channels cannot be too significantly understated as we move into social’s next phase, especially when it comes to the social media impact on business planning. And while social can be an excellent form of extremely targeted advertising, it can also prove entirely irrelevant even for some of today’s highest aspiring digital-driven enterprises. Treading carefully when thinking of the who, what, when, where, why and how for executing an effective social marketing strategy with your business plan is of utmost importance.
How to Drive Investors Nuts (or how to not get funded)
When it comes to writing a business plan, there are some big faux pas that one should avoid at all costs:
- Don’t make assumptions unless you can back them up. You’ll get called on it and if you’re prepared to get called on it, chances are, it will implode.
- Measure everything. Don’t just assume that a social campaign works unless you’ve tested it. Each industry segment is different. Your segment may be difficult to reach online in general, let alone through social channels.
- Assume everyone knows. In some cases, your investors may not be privy to information on marketing in the realms of social media, like Facebook and Linkedin. Some education in your elevator pitch, presentation and pitchbook may be required. If you know the audience knows, don’t dumb it down too much either, that could come back to bite you in the butt. It’s ultimately a fine line depending on your audience.
- Never assume a lion’s share chunk or solo social campaign. No company would ever put all their eggs into the social basket, let alone a single social player. Your social marketing portion should be just that: a “portion” of your overall campaign.
How you approach writing the social portion of your business plan marketing campaign is extremely dependent on your strategy, your customers and your corporate goals. Blanket statements almost never work, but failing to test new ideas is at the heart of failure.
Nailing Your ROI
Don’t talk social unless you can CONFIDENTLY gauge revenue gained from doing social campaigns. You can’t confidently gauge the campaigns’ effectiveness without testing. Testing requires some money. If you can’t show initial tests for effectiveness, then don’t plan on talking in-depth about the usage of social campaigns in your business plan’s marketing strategy.
Much like measuring any click-based ad campaigns, upping the social ROI requires a bit of finesse, creativity and know-how on exploiting the system in favor of yourself vis-a-vis the competition. If you can effectively understand the ROI of your social campaigns before you even get to the point of writing a plan to woo investors, then you’ll be better prepared to answer the tough questions and put some logic to the assumption you make on your company’s supposed growth. In short, you must nail the ROI on your plan, then nail the plan.
Maximizing the probability your company will be funded is best accomplished by walking the fine line of boldness, creativity and analytics, especially in today’s technology-centric world. Getting it right on paper may not reflect reality, but it should look “good enough” to get money bags investors to write the checksAuthor's Google+