2013: The Year Businesses Took Social Media Theory and Threw It in the Trash
Over the last decade (especially the last five years), social media marketing has been one long train of speculation and theory after another. I don’t say this to be negative in any way. It’s a natural byproduct of a new phase this world is going through. But phase one is over. We need to move on. Our conversation, if we really want to make progress, has to go from one of theory to a place of application and real results.
And when I speak of real results, I’m referring to experiences like that of Dominic, who sent me this e-mail just a few days ago:
Love your work Marcus. Keep it up…On page 210 of the book, and 3 months in to setting up with HubSpot Pro account. Inbound (marketing) is already making a massive difference to our traffic and conversions.
Set all the team blogging 3-4 posts per week and 5 ebooks now offered for free on the site.
Resulted so far in 8,000 new leads in the last 3 months and conversions up 20%
That, my friends, is what it’s all about. It’s also the type of story businesses need to hear. Without going into too much detail, Dominic has managed to create a culture of inbound marketing within his company. He is producing content of different types. And more than anything else, his business is attaining more customers. Exciting times indeed.
When it comes down to it, we need more stories like Dominic’s in this industry. We need more businesses that truly understand the principles of social media and content marketing and know how to implement strategies in ways that work. Granted, there will always be those that elect not to keep up with best practices and do what it takes to achieve success in the digital age. That’s fine, we’ll let them be.
But for the rest of the world, application needs to be the name of the game in 2013. And for those bloggers and thought leaders that write about this stuff day in and day out, it is my hope we’ll all work hard to shine a light this coming year on businesses that are actually achieving success in the digital realm, and the strategies they’re using to garner said success. At this point, we’re all obligated to show more.
When I look at the direction The Sales Lion is headed in 2013, I want this site to become known as one of the premier non-theory marketing sites on the web. This is exactly why I plan on highlighting clients and readers that are crushing it online with their business (be it big or small) and then showing exactly how they are getting results.
This, in my opinion, is what most business owners and marketers want to be reading about. They don’t want wild overviews. They don’t want theory. They simply want results.
On a side note, this is also why I’m excited about a brand new blogging conference being put on by Mack Collier in Los Angeles this coming year. The conference is called “Blog H.O.T”—which stands for “hands on training.”
A few months back when Mack approached me about speaking at this event, my initial reaction was not one of great enthusiasm, as I suspected it was going to be just like many of the blogging and social media conferences being put on all over the country these days—speakers speaking and audiences listening. (Not that this is necessarily bad, but at this point I feel we need more.)
But that’s when Mack told me something that truly piqued my interest. He said the conference was going to have two unique qualities:
1. It was going to be clearly focused on business and corporate blogging strategies. (In other words, it wasn’t going to try and be everything to every type of blogger—just businesses.)
2. It was going to be hands-on with heavy interaction.
A blogging conference full of businesses where the audience gets their hands dirty?
Yeah, I wanted in.
Now granted, time will tell if Mack’s conference is a great one, but I have a feeling he’s on to something, and shares my thoughts in that all need to step up our game in 2013.
So that’s my commitment to you, my readers. Sure, I’m going to have my normal mix of business, opinion, and personal development writings within the walls of this digital home.
But more than anything else, I want to give you, my readers, reality. I want you to hear about real business doing real marketing strategies that are getting real results. And if you’re not seeing just that, don’t hesitate to call me out on it.
As we look ahead to 2013, where do you see things going within the social media and content marketing realm? Do you believe as I do we’ll start seeing less talk of theory and more talk of application? When it comes to conferences, do you prefer the hands-on approach or would you rather keep things as they’ve mostly been up to this point? Finally, what would you like to see more of from The Sales Lion in 2013?