Marketing is all about getting your message to your target audience effectively. That said, the growing popularity of social media has made it one of the perfect places for marketing and advertising.
Today, more and more people are hanging out on various social media channels. This massive pool of audience can be a low-hanging fruit for businesses, therefore you need to concentrate your efforts on increasing engagement with these potential customers on social media. According to a study, 30% of millennials said they engage with a brand on social media at least once a month, which means your strategy must go beyond just about existence.
If you want to reach out your prospects and engage them successfully, it’s high time to fully leverage social media in your marketing plans. Currently, popular platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and Pinterest can provide you with a powerful platform to promote your business through various exciting approaches. For that, you have to devise strategies that not only captivate your prospects but keep you ahead in the competition as well.
Here are some extremely robust social media marketing strategies for your business:
1. Define your audience
Identifying and defining your target audience is the very first step towards setting your business off on the right path as far as social media is concerned. In simple terms, your audience is the group of people who will either use your product/service or recommend them to their acquaintances. Understanding your audience is very important to get insights like who buys your products, what age group is the most appropriate, and what income level makes up most of your returning customers?
If your business is witnessing low engagement on your social profiles, it’s mostly because you don’t have an accurate audience profile. One of the biggest mistakes of branding on social media is trying to appeal to everyone. Thus the right approach is to start researching your prospects’ online behaviour and what makes them tick. Gain crucial information on how and where your target audience is spending most of their time. And most importantly, how they are socializing and engaging on various social networks.
With the help of “buyer personas”, you can effectively target right customers, in the right places, at the right occasions with the right messages. But before that, you need to take a look at the demographics of the most valuable social channels. According to the recent Pew Research Centre survey, YouTube and Facebook dominate the social media landscape with 73% and 68% of American users respectively. These are followed by Instagram (35%), Pinterest (29%), Snapchat (27%), LinkedIn (25%), and Twitter (24%). However, Instagram and Snapchat are more popular among those ages 18 to 24.
2. Work on your marketing metrics and establish goals
As we mentioned, if channelized effectively, social media is an extraordinarily powerful marketing medium, but it can also prove a time sink if you focus on wrong priorities. Thus, it is pertinent to evaluate the social metrics associated with your overall goals. Social media metrics are basically data and statistics that give you insights into your social media marketing performance.
The following are the most important metrics that can help you rev up your social media marketing strategy:
As a matter of fact, the primary goal of your social media campaign is to boost customer engagement and brand awareness. As Forrester puts it, “engagement is the level of involvement, interaction, intimacy, and influence an individual has with a brand over time.” So with the help of engagement metric, you can easily measure the number of Likes, Shares, and Comments that your social updates receive. A good degree of engagement shows early signs of growth and progress of your brand building efforts.
Reach signifies the number of unique users who viewed or read your post. It tells you to what extent your content is spreading on the social media. Reach is also a measure of your potential audience size as well as the range of your conversions.
One of the biggest challenges for social media marketing is to identify how your content is generating sales. No matter how many likes and shares your posts are getting, it’s sales that matter at the end of the day. For that, it is important to track how many leads you are getting. You have to measure how many social interactions, web page visits or email opens it takes before one of your prospects becomes a customer.
Customer conversions are the basis for the success of marketers, and no strategy is complete without measuring customer acquisition. Your goal is to make your customers take action on account of the content you’ve created. Thus, organize and see which of your social posts result in the best lead conversion rates. Once your audience is engaged with your brand, you’ll find out who is most interested and ready to purchase your product or service.
3. An effective content marketing strategy can be a game changer
One particular thing that engages your audience the most is high-quality content. Content marketing has been a prominent form of marketing for a while and it will continue to do so. The fact is social media and content complement each other: without quality content, social media is ineffective and without social media, no one will get to know about your content. Thus, good content is always the backbone of a solid social media marketing strategy.
But which type of content should you be using on social media? You can’t just post any content as it could prove counterproductive. As per the need of your target audience, the content should be highly relevant, informative and should go with your business goals and brand identity. In doing so, it is also important to share the content in the right manner. That is, you cannot just bombard your followers with promotional messages. The strategy should be to bring a balance between the valuable content and the one that is meant to highlight the importance of your product or service.
A good way to do this is using certain tools that can help you create and promote customer-specific content. For example, Bannersnack helps you design beautiful Facebook graphics and stunning social media visuals using images, texts, cliparts, stock photos, infographics, and web fonts. Another powerful content marketing tool that you can use is BuzzSumo that analyses what works best for your niche and helps in finding key influencers to promote your content. Furthermore, how you should post your content on social network depends on form and context. The content should fit your business’s voice and platform trends. That is, the content can be funny, serious, highly detailed, or educational according to the network.
4. Customer experience is the key
Social media is increasingly becoming a channel of choice for consumers looking to engage with brands and address their issues, so you have to ensure it is integral to the customer experience. This is the age of engagement and your customer service teams should listen and respond to your customers in order to prevent problems and dispense better customer service.
If a visitor comments on your Facebook or Instagram page and doesn’t get a response from your end, the trust takes a huge hit. If you don’t communicate with your prospects, they will highly likely turn to your competitors to seek solutions to their queries. On the other hand, a prompt response from your side will build a trust and relationship with your potential customers.
Focus on indulging your audience, ask them for their opinions, comments, and ideas on how you could make things better for them. Listening to your customers can go a long way to improve the customer experience. For that, create a feedback loop and map out the most appropriate departments for handling different customer issues. Make sure who in customer care will resolve customer service issues; who on the content team will handle content issues; who will handle product-related issues, etc.
5. Leverage influencers for powerful brand advocacy
Nurturing and working with influencers can be a boon for your business in ways you can’t even imagine. Not only just big, recognized brands, but also startups are understanding the value of influencers to draw in more customers. According to a Tomoson report, not only is influencer marketing the fastest growing customer acquisition channel, it’s also the most cost-effective. As many as 51% of marketers accept that they acquire better customers using influencer marketing.
Social media influencers are people who have established authority and popularity on certain social media platform(s) and have a huge audience because of the content they publish. The followers of these influencers trust them immensely and pay heed on their recommendations. Therefore, collaborating with these influencers is a powerful way of building your brand on social media.
Having said that, it is extremely important to find the right influencers to work with. This where a large number of marketers struggle with. As per a study conducted by Econsultancy, identifying the right influencers is the biggest influencer marketing challenge. You have to look into some important aspects before choosing the most appropriate influencer for your brand. For example, the audience factor that tells how much followers are committed to their influencers; the ROI factor that provides you information on reach, impressions, engagement, and the type of content; the respect factor that tells how quickly their followers become your customers.
No doubt, social media has generated a huge enthusiasm among people at large. They are using it for all practical purposes – from educating themselves to having fun doing online shopping. This vast customer base also provides a great opportunity for businesses to build their brand and convert more and more prospects. The above strategy will certainly give you an added advantage, but you should also try to adapt quickly and introduce new changes to your overall strategy.