Thursday, February 10, 2011

Social Media Secrets of a Fast-Growing Firm

First, Inc. lists the firm among its "Fastest Growing Companies."

Then Crain’s Chicago adds it to its "Fast 50" roster.

And social media marketing helped make it happen.


B-to-B marketer Drew Hawkins shares his secrets on Social Media Today.

Hawkins works for Hinda Incentives, which markets employee recognition and loyalty programs to businesses.

His secrets are pretty simple:

Devise a strategy. "Our social strategy boiled down to one goal: drive traffic to our Website—our largest source of lead generation.  Our theory was, if people liked what we had to say in our social outlets, they would be more likely to visit our Website."

Narrow your options. "We narrowed our 'voice options' down to a few select channels. Our emphasis went toward content development for our blog.  We generated traffic to our blog using Twitter and LinkedIn, and some relevant, B2B-friendly networks."

Build a community. "After building online relationships with a couple key influencers through blog commenting and Twitter conversations, we began to build our own community around the strategies of recognition and loyalty programs."

Hawkins' results are impressive:
  • Followers on Twitter and LinkedIn doubled in 6 months
  • Blog traffic grew to 1,000 visits a month in 12 months
  • Website traffic increased 15 percent in 12 months
  • Lead quality measurably improved in 12 months
And what's he learned along the way?

Be patient.  "We’ve been working for over a year and a half on our efforts and are just now reaping the benefits."

Focus on quality. "We’ve learned that there’s more to social media than just having a ton of followers.  It’s converting to meaningful relationships that counts."

Know your audience.  "Flying by the seat of your pants in social media isn’t strategy.  Before starting anything, you should research who you need to target, where they hang out on line and what they talk about."
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