As part of our Marketing in May webinar series, the Marketing department here at CompanyCam is contributing some fresh material to help guide you in your marketing efforts!
Okay, real talk. To develop a social media strategy, you need to first understand how important social media is. Why invest time, money, and energy into something you don’t see the value in, right?
According to the Marketing Insider Group, “your business needs a social media presence.” And we agree. No matter the size of your business, social media is critical when it comes to engaging customers and any future clients. Social media creates the opportunity for your company and its established brand personality to take the stage. It’s the platform to which your business can truly communicate, entertain, and support your customers.
Not to mention, there are more than three billion people using social media monthly… Hopefully that’s enough to convince you — social media is really important. Now let’s think through some strategies.
As mentioned above, social media provides a chance for businesses to be authentic and real with customers. Because of that, your social media strategy and content should be incredibly unique to your business and your business only. A local floral shop’s Instagram strategy should be starkly different from a national roofing company’s Facebook strategy. However, that isn’t to say there aren’t some non-negotiable elements when producing an effective plan… because there are!
Think through these ideas:
Firstly, like most things in life, having a goal in mind sets you up for greater success. This is no different! Have objectives for all your content. Are you attempting to increase following? Communicate something to your audience? Entertain customers? Are you looking for sales or leads? Gene Marks, writer for Washington Post & The New York Times, recommends knowing “exactly what you are trying to accomplish.” Be specific, be measurable, and be realistic. Buffer says there are nine potential social media goals — to name a few: drive traffic to your website, increase mentions in the press, grow revenue, or provide social customer service. Pick one and allow it to guide your content.
Secondly, understand social media algorithms. “The key thing with Facebook is to remember that the algorithm they use rewards posts that have interaction,” says Adam McCloskey, Associate Director of Florida SBDC at UWF, “if a business posts something but no one responds, then Facebook won’t show it to anyone.” Makes sense, right? The more interactions your post has, the more people will see it. So, as you sketch out your social media strategy, analyze your audience. What do your customers like? Where do they get their online content? Beyond your company, what other businesses are they associating with? Tailor announcements, sales, culture pieces to this information. The aim is to gain greater interaction.
Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Reddit, Pinterest! It is easy to get muddled up in all the options. That’s why it is encouraged to focus on one platform at a time. Each outlet has its own formatting, preferences, and features to learn — your company needs to perfect one. Generally speaking, target audiences spend most of their time on one platform. Figure out which platform that is and master it.
According to Oberlo, more than 70% of marketers found social media marketing to be “somewhat effective” to “very effective” for their business (Buffer, 2019). Social media marketing has the potential to break down barriers between brands and consumers; companies and customers. Posting regularly generates consistent and organic conversations with your followers. With social media you can gauge customers’ interests by utilizing the platform’s features, such as Instagram story polls or Facebook’s live stream. The time of day and day of the week you send out content will also vary between audiences and platforms. People are probably grabbing mochas on Mondays, but driving to Vegas for the weekend. Naturally, a travel agency should post around holidays and weekends, whereas a local coffee shop would benefit on workdays. If you work for a roofing company, be more active after a hail storm. Or during the extreme hot & cold seasons, if your company is in the HVAC industry.
Don’t miss out on the opportunities social media marketing provides. Establish a thorough and effective social media strategy by knowing where you are going. Bring humor, tonality, and flavor into your posts. Be enthusiastic about your brand personality; be genuine & be consistent. From the time of day you post, to the hashtags you use — keep your target audience in mind. After all, social media is the place for communication and support. Nobody likes one-sided conversations.
Useful Articles for More Information
Social Media Marketing Strategy, by Buffer.
3 Social Media Strategies For Small Businesses in 2019, by Business 2 Community.
Why Social Media is Important For Business Marketing, by Marketing Insider Group.