Meet SME Guerrilla Marketing Conference speaker: Heinrich Van den Worm

Marketing and social media pro on how SMEs can get their slice of the digital pie

With more South African going online, it’s clear that business owners looking to increase their customer base, need to follow them.

Research shows that internet users in the country are expected to increase to 27 million by 2019, from 15 million in 2014, this is according to the findings of the Cisco Visual Networking Index 2015 released earlier in the year. Internet protocol (IP) traffic has also been forecasted to grow six-fold, representing an annual growth rate of 44%.

Heinrich Van den Worm, head of social media and media strategist at Avatar Agency – a Johannesburg-based marketing agency – says he strongly believes that small businesses need to master social media and content marketing to get their slice of the digital pie.

“A social media strategy is word of mouth on steroids,” say Van den Worm, and the value business owners can derive from using social media depends on how they implement the strategy in their own business.

Van den Worm, who has been in the social media space for almost five years, is also one of the speakers at the SME South Africa Guerrilla Marketing Conference.

SME South Africa speaks him about how social media and content marketing can benefit SMEs and what attendees can expect from him at the Guerrilla Marketing Conference.


Benefits of social media and content marketing strategies for SMEs 

While the two strategies fulfil they same goal, they are not the same, says Van den Worm.

Content marketing is all about the how (blog posts, infographics, videos)  and social media is the where (the social media platforms used) – having a solid online strategy is about bringing the two to work together.

“Social media and content marketing actually overlaps each other and should work in synergy. You can’t really do the one without the other,” he says.

Proper use of social media together with a strong content marketing strategy can produce concrete results for SMEs and using the two strategies together will help close the audience gaps that a brand might have.

“With reach, frequency, and great creative, these two pillars will in turn help you to drive sales, awareness, or whatever your business’ objective is.”


Tips for crafting a killer strategy 

A website alone is no longer enough to attract a large number of online customers, he says to create an online strategy that will win over a high volume of customers, businesses need to always be relevant and current in their strategy.

Here are Van den Worm’s 7 tips for businesses to building winning online strategies.

1. Address the needs of the customer first, followed by the needs of their brand.

2. Align content development with metrics and goals for your business.

3. Humanise your brand and try to engage with your customers to create a real-time customer experience.

4. Take a mobile first approach. 

5. Use appropriate hashtags to segment content.

6. Use of as much video content as possible.

7. Keep in check posting frequency –  More on Twitter, less on Facebook

Catch Van den Worm at the SME South Africa Guerrilla Marketing Conference taking place at Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship on November 20. To be part of the free event click here

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