Social Media: The Perfect Promotional Tool
Regardless of whether you’re an avid social media user, or completely new to the phenomenon (unlikely, I know), getting your theme seen can be a difficult thing. However, unlike many other products and services, you have a distinct advantage over many in that your product is inherently visual in nature. While this does have its drawbacks and dangers, the fact is that click-through rates on images are anything up to 100% more than text-based links.
The downside is that while you have this great advantage, so does everyone else in the WP theme world. Indeed, the places where you decide to promote your theme are likely to be places in which others are doing exactly the same, so how do you then increase interest, sales or buzz around your theme? Using social media can, if used correctly, really boost the number of people seeing and – if you present it in an appealing way –using your theme. It all starts with getting the right look though.
Showing Off Your Theme
There is a wealth of study that shows that the right image is key to promoting anything, whether it’s cars, hotels or WP themes. Of course, getting it right isn’t always an easy job. Showing off your theme in the best light demands an understanding of who it’s for. You already know who you designed it for, but extrapolating that out into what kind of images you use for your mock up and where you promote it can be difficult. It may sound obvious, but for themes designed for blogs, you may want to include blog-style imagery, such as party shots or sunsets using twitter, while an e-commerce theme is better suited to white-backed products, flashes and offer strips promoted on LinkedIn.
There’s an awkward problem inherent in promoting your WP theme in that while you want to show off the theme itself, you may wind up giving too much attention to the images used in the mock up. Wherever your theme allows, use text to highlight the features, and you can even create bespoke images that list your features and USPs within the images. As a general rule, try to avoid obvious stock photography, as this can give your theme a ‘stock’ look, which is unlikely to be what you want.
Going to the Top
One of the best ways to use social media to promote your WP theme is to go straight to the top of the pile and build conversation with the companies and businesses that are considered thought leaders. If you can build rapport with these people, you are far more likely to have them notice and share your theme. Use your company blog, for example, to create a top ten list of corporate WP themes and share it with the top people in the industry through Twitter. If it’s good enough, you’ll get a link back to your site with loads of engaged users hitting your website, and subsequently your theme.
Blogger outreach is one of the most effective ways to draw people to your site. If you can find blogging outreach possibilities through Twitter, forums or blogging analysis software, you can create a powerful presence in the world of social media. Remember, it’s in every webmaster’s interest to source valuable, exclusive content for their site, and if you can offer that, you will usually receive some kind of link from them, whether it’s in the article or as a bio at the end. Also remember, that pretty much every guest blog you write will wind up being promoted through social media, so you’ll also be getting your name around and making a reputation for yourself.
Which Social Media Platform Should I Use?
Remember that each social media outlet has its own strengths and weaknesses. Even the mighty Facebook, for example, has a pretty weak WP developer scene. Pinterest, on the other hand might seem like its relatively low numbers make for poor promotional potential, but it’s often a place for inspiration for a number of designers from all disciplines. Twitter, despite its focus on short text, has a powerful, incredibly engaged community that loves to share. Of all the potential outlets, I would say Twitter has to be the most suitable to use as a hub for your social media.
However, it’s not just about finding one social media outlet, and tweeting until your fingers bleed. Effective social media is about leveraging all the possible outlets, and gaining the best return on investment possible. This means, for example, pinning your theme on Pinterest, creating a YouTube tutorial, building a top ten tips for e-commerce themes post on your blog, tweeting and posting on Facebook about all of them, then conversing with your followers, asking for advice and gradually building more and more engagement. There are plenty of ways to build followers and subsequently promotion of your theme or themes, but planning exactly how you do it before you set out on the social media marketing route will make all the difference.
David Ingram is part of the Digital Marketing team at MySocialAgency, a leading Social Media Agency London. David is a regular blogger with a passion for technology, sport and travel.