Thanks to Lorraine Ball at Roundpeg for turning me on to Jay Ehret’s blog, the Marketing Spot.

I wanted to talk about some of the concepts Jay uses pertaining to the marketing circle of life. I wanted to relate his four pillars to social media marketing for small business.

Jay has a post entitled The Marketing Circle of Life. In the post Jay talks about the “four primary spots of the marketing circle of life: Branding, Experience, Conversation, and Promotion.”

Copyright Jay Ehret

According to Jay the first step of any marketing plan should be the Branding of your company. You cannot focus on any type of promotion until you have established your brand.

Experience is related to how your customers feels through every touchpoint your customer offers. To quote Jay from his post, “You cannot give people something to talk about unless they first have something to talk about. “ Makes sense to me!

Conversation is what happens after the customer experience. What is the message your customer is spreading? You need to figure it out!

“You should be using your Promotion to attract, not seduce customers.” Promotion should be used to advertise the top three choices. AND THEN we come full circle.

This is a simple and amazing model from Jay to help small business owners understand their marketing plan. I know… I know… How does social media marketing fit into this marketing model? I decided to take Jay’s model and readjust it to show visually how social media supports this model.

The four social media marketing support structures for the circle of life are productive planning, design/content, community involvement, and investment.

Productive Planning

When you are adding social media into the mix of brand building you need to make sure you are planning, setting goals, and mapping out time management.

Planning is essential to building your brand online. Before and after you develop your brand identity you should be constantly revamping your brand strategy. Social Media should be a part of that brand strategy.


Design: You should try and use the same user name, a personal picture, data (both business and personal), and your logo/colors. Users should experience you (and your company) the same way over many different platforms.

Content: Content is key if you are wanting to enhance the user experience to your social media marketing. This is most important if a blog is a part of your SMM. Create meaningful content and add personality into what you write. Authentic communication is key when using social media. Keywords and linking are both extremely important.

Community Involvement

This is where the time management aspect comes into play. It is extremely important that you become involved in the social media communities. The same concept applies to offline social business networking. If you don’t show up all the time… People are going to forget you. Believe me, it is even faster on the web. Get involved. Add some comments. Join in the conversation. Start building some name recognition.

You will also learn some stuff along the way.


First off, investment is different than involvement. By becoming involved in a social media community your are enterting into a conversation with potential clients or referrals to the potentials. Investment means you are constantly reinventing how to keep readers to your blog, spicen up your profile pages, creating new meaning content, building your brand, and re-designing your blog. It should be a combination of the three previous steps.

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