Global, Advice
25 September 2013

Social Media Marketing for Startups

Eric Fulwiler of Mullen, is tweeting, facebooking and on the "Internets" every day seeking the best social media strategies for clients like Acura. He helps clients decide what they should be doing on social media and advises each #MCFinalist to find a strategy best for their company. Its common to be on Facebook and Twitter because, Facebook in particular, is usually a first mover in technology.
 
People have an expectation that you are on these platforms. However, it takes asking before you can tap into the full potential of these social networks. Ask yourself, where is your target market? How are they using social media? On what platform does your target spend most of their time?
 
When thinking about social media keep the entrepreneurial spirit and think like a challenger! Fulwiler has advice for the startup community to keep in mind when developing a social media strategy:
 
The biggest threat to brands and business isnt rejection, its indifference.
Make sure you give an opinion. As an industry leader you will want to engage in meaningful conversations that reflect upon your industry.
 
Keep a belief that people will care.
Make sure that you have this mentality in order to effectively inject energy into your social media strategy. This will carry out through your business lifecycle.
 
Social is a behavior, not a medium.
Keep in mind you are the brand. When using social media make sure to think through the brand lens..
 
Small wins and big ideas need to work together.
Think of this as drum beats and guitar solos; drum beats are constant and guitar solos have a short run, but they need to work together to make a solid composition.
 
Crazy ideas can be good ideas that get exposure.
Make sure your ideas are sticky.
 
Add value to take value.
You will gain value through engagement and creativity through your social media messaging. In return you will gain value through your audience.
 
Be relevant.
It is important to speak about current topics while using social media. This is especially true when engaging with a particular follower. Make sure you respond to people in a tone that delivers the right message.
 
Be human 
Speak through a brand or human voice. This means you want to appear relatable to your audience. People look for commonality in lifestyle and opinion when choosing a brand or influencer.
 
There are a lot of places to hang out on social media.
Find the best places to spend your companys time that will help make the biggest impact.
 
Prioritize visual content.
Most content should be visual in order to help tell your brand story.
 
Understand the value of a like.
This can be interpreted through calculating the ROI of Facebook or Twitter likes. There is a helpful article from Dan Zarella, Social Media Scientist at Hubspot, on how to do this. Follow this link to calculate your likes through a special  formula: http://bit.ly/13fgGmM, or use Zarellas handy Hubspot calculator tool! http://valueofalike.com/
 
You want people to know you for the value you drive with your content; not 
to the frequency of it.
It is not beneficial to just post for the sake of posting. Make sure your content is meaningful. Ask yourself, is it helpful, entertaining, or informative?
 
If anything remember that it is important to be relevant, helpful, and/or entertaining. People are social through communication. Fulwiler says, its about building relationships, and relationships take time.
 
There are tools out there to help you optimize your social media effectiveness. Fulwiler suggests using Followerwonk: http://bit.ly/HP3sDN 
 
Thank you Eric Fulwiler (@EFulwiler) for a great session on social media for startups! Keep being social! #MCEngage13

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MassChallenge strengthens the global innovation ecosystem by accelerating high-potential startups across all industries, from anywhere in the world.