There is little debate about the power of inbound social media marketing. Major brands are benefitting from massive online audiences that not only find them on their own, but are attentive in listening to the brand’s messaging. What’s more, much like ambassadors, many of these “audience” members often share brand messages with their own networks – spreading these messages even further, while adding a little third-party credibility, too.
I think we can all agree, online marketing programs can, and often do, deliver massive results that generate leads and result in business.
A common misconception, however, is that these programs must reach large numbers of people to be considered successful. Ford Motor Company has been very successful in its online initiatives, and indeed has some impressive numbers to back that statement up. Social media site Mashable did a small case study on one of Ford’s most recent campaigns which was aimed at raising awareness and buzz around the 2012 Focus – check out the case study; the numbers speak for themselves.
Does this tell us then that businesses need to attract millions of viewers to their YouTube channel, or thousands of visitors daily to their blog to be successful? In my opinion, the answer is no.
Organizations that deal in things with less mass appeal than things like cars, or technology, for example, are seeing huge increases in business leads, with a fraction of the online audience that big brands like Ford have. The key for them isn’t the size of their audience, but rather who is actively watching/reading/listening. Niche market businesses can, in fact, see great success through inbound marketing, if done right. Good content and an SEO strategy are the main ingredients, but that’s another topic entirely.
If I asked you if a small fencing company in the town of Littleton, MA would benefit from a blog would you answer yes?
Louis E. Page is a small, family owned and operated fencing company that has had a great deal of success through its blog – experiencing an increase in sales leads of 850 percent since its launch. Yes, 850 percent! This example is a bit old now (from 2009), but it’s still a great example of how a niche market, small business can benefit from an online marketing strategy, without attracting hundreds of thousands of readers to its blog and viewers to its videos. If anything, this is even truer now in 2011 as more people get online and turn to blogs, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and the likes for information.
Do you know of a niche-market business that has benefitted from an online marketing strategy? If so, please share in the comments!