The 4 stages of social media marketing


“If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll probably end up somewhere else,” said Laurence Peter, the educator and creator of the Peter Principle.
Laurence’s wisdom applies to companies that start down the road with social media,
To know where you’re going, ask these business questions.

  • What are the desired results?
  • Who do you want to attract?
  • How are they going to find you?
  • What are the measurements that matter?

With the answers in hand, start the 4 stages of social media marketing.

  • CRAWL: Look around and listen because people like to do business with people they know. Social media give them the opportunity. But, if they’re interested, they will get to know you on their terms. Probably, the first place they will go to is your website. Make sure it is a desirable place to visit and it has an analytic tool like Google Analytics, the GPS of a website. Help make it easy to find using keywords that describe their unmet need. Optimize those keywords in the url titles of pages and with headers for the subject lines on every page. Equip the home page with ways for them to stay in touch like email subscription, eBooks or offers. Begin to build a database. Make sure the action you want them to take is clear and establish the measurements, the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) that matter most. This is going to be the actionable scorecard to keep the business strategy on track.
  • WALK: Connect and activate because, for every business, there is a wide disparity between best and worst customers. Define who to attract. Identity where they are on social networks and the communities and groups to join and participate. If you create a blog, and you should for all its value in content, keywords, SEO and 1-to-1 relationships, develop a blogger relationships effort. Start to connect and listen to where your are creating engagement and follow it. Increase what’s working and pull back on what’s not.
  • RUN: Engage and involve because social media and customer service are the same business. Determine the time required to put against social media each week because you are not in the social media business anymore, you’re in the customer service business.  Start to curate your content because you’re also in the content marketing business.  It’s a top priority to keep content interesting and to think about how many ways it can be re-purposed to feed your content marketing program with elements video, emails, newsletters and webinars.
  • THRIVE: Fans helps you do the lifting because your community is your best resource for innovation and ideas. Social media starts to pay dividends when your community turns to you to teach something new and they want to do the same for you. Does it happen? Don’t take my word for it. Here are 166 Case Studies that Prove Social Media Marketing ROI. Among them are companies like Fiskars, Harley Davidson, IBM and Starbucks who used their communities for research and new product ideas. It produced extraordinary results.

Do these 4 stages help you see how social media can help your business? Does it help to break it down?
Attend a FREE webinar, Secrets of Social Media ROI Revealed by 166 Case Studies, on 10/16 at 11 am EST; brought to you by Biznology and here’s where you register.


    1. Rob Petersen

      Hi Dave and Sarah,
      Thanks for featuring this. Glad it was helpful.

  1. Nicole - Bespoke Words

    Simple and to the point – and in a language that small business operators can understand and relate to. Great post, thank you.

    1. Rob Petersen

      Thank you Nicole. Appreciate your comment. Rob

    1. Rob Petersen

      Thanks for the pingback. I appreciate it. Rob

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