Ten Powerful Rules Behind Social Media Marketing You Should Know
The power of social media marketing cannot be understated, with anyone now being able to turn their name into a household brand by expanding their audience across millions of streams and devices. So how can you tap into this exciting new medium? There are many ways to use social media, and many platforms to choose from, but there are a few simple rules and tools to remember along the way.
What Is Social Media Marketing?
The use of online social media platforms, such as Facebook or Twitter, as brand leverage with consumers, by either encouraging brand engagement and awareness, or actively promoting a product or service.
1) Develop a social media strategy with scheduled updates and posts.
Gather any information you have about your audience- from location, to demographic- and use this to create a clear plan about your brand voice, the message you’re sharing, how consistent your activity will be, and the type of content. This will be important in laying the framework of your strategy, so make sure you align all the factors together- from content, to metrics, to your goals. Work backwards and reverse engineer your content plan, by identifying your goals, then selecting your measurable metrics, and finally developing the content strategy. To find your most relevant metric, decide if your aim is to:
Look for volume and type of commentary (Facebook comments, Instagram likes/comments, Twitter re-tweets, etc)
-create a following
Measure your subscribers, and followers on your social platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.).
Quantify the precise dollar value of every lead from a social media interaction.
Measure the individual visitors from social websites where you’ve run your campaigns.
2) Develop quality, interesting content, that your audience will want to engage with and share.
Social media is where your consumers go to learn more about their favourite people or brands, and express their personality. Learn what is interesting or important to your audience to create effective buyer personas, and tailor the content to meet these needs. If you can offer meaningful, relevant, useful content, your audience are likely to share it with their network, which expands your range of influence and is hugely beneficial for your brand. This makes it extremely important to include an easy social sharing capability, such as a clear button, commonly at the top of the page or directly beneath the content.
3) Adjust your strategies towards different platforms
The reason that the various social mediums are able to co-exist, is that they all inhabit rather different networks, and appeal more to differing people. From interactive communication, to photo-sharing, to quick updates, and so much more, each platform gives you chance to refine your message to fit that shape. For example, a post on Facebook might bring big results, but if it’s over a certain character limit then it can’t fit on some platforms such as Twitter, and it can’t take centre stage on Instagram without a bold, unique image.
4) Use any insights of your audience towards market research
When you’re implementing your strategies, take note of any responses or feedback from your audience. This is invaluable to your campaign, and will be able to provide you with more information for you to use when you’re creating your next wave of content
5) Maintain a clear message and delivery
Find your brand’s voice, and stick to it throughout all your mediums. Don’t try to be cool and hip on one platform, as well as intellectual and stuffy on another- you’ll just confuse your audience and look false. It’s far better to find a personable, relatable voice, and use it to deliver messages which are relevant to your audience
6) Select from the many social media management tools, and take some of the stress off
Managing a successful social media campaign can be difficult, but thankfully there are programs and software available which can assist. From content curation to strategy management, there are a huge range of tools, including a few we’ve listed below.
HootSuite - A single management platform to manage your social media channels, including delegating tasks among internal users (a great platform to use in a team)
Buffer - A content publishing platform, to schedule and complete social network content
Leadfeeder - Powered by Google Analytics, it helps B2B companies track web traffic which might otherwise come and go without a trace, and convert them into leads.
Yotpo - By offering coupons or rewards, Yotpo incentivises reviews from your customers, then collects them in a database for you to access, allowing you to instantly include these on your website and social streams
Crate - Working in conjunction with Buffer, Crate is a content curation tool which gives you greater control over the automated tweets and content suggestions. You can refine and amend your categories of content type, then drop them into Buffer.
7) Observe your competitors activity, and note any effective strategies
If you can keenly monitor your competitor’s metrics as thoroughly as you’re monitoring your own, you may be able to spot a few key discrepancies which relate to some differences in your social media- and this type of information can work wonders on your campaign. Without directly copying content, this is also a good way to gather inspiration for your upcoming content posts, as your market insights and audiences may be largely similar.
8) Social media is not a sales desk
Social media is where you can convince your audience why to engage with your brand, not your competitors, and to keep them updated, so don’t try to push sales onto your social media following unless you want to lose them. There are Facebook and Instagram advertising options available, and can be hugely effective when you correctly set your targets, but the general platform is for one of interaction and sharing.
9) Prepare for the not-so-nice
As recently reported on eMarketer, only 45% of marketers currently have an effective strategy to deal with negative social media posts; 23% don’t have any kind of plan; 25% are working on getting a plan; and 8% have a plan that doesn’t work. Social media is a two-way street, and if you have an unhappy customer, he might not think twice about leaving disgruntled feedback and messages on your public platform. Implement a plan that will aid your resolution, from efficient response times to appropriate dialogue.
10) Timing is everything
Depending on your industry, your medium, your audience, and a whole lot of other factors, timing can play a pivotal role in the success of your strategy. If you post online while your audience sleeps, you’ll risk your post being lost in the sea of updates which will come after. Pay attention to your audience, and the most successful times that your posts occur, and integrate this information into your social media strategy plan for optimal results.
While social media can seem daunting, the most powerful aspects aren’t based in the technology, but in the understanding of human psychology. Getting to know your viewers and what makes them tick is what will help you to find the correct method to engage with them, but it requires a hefty amount of ongoing research, so ensure that your team is committed to the strategy. This might mean you want to find a specialised online marketing agency to help. Dilate Digital is a Perth based digital marketing agency, with services from SEO consulting, Adwords, and videography, to graphic design and digital content. Call us today 1300 345 283 to find out how we can help you.
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