Social media has evolved from simply being platforms on which people connect with friends, to a marketing and advertising powerhouses. According to DataRePortal, over half of the world’s population is using social media. If your business has not started harnessing the power of social media marketing, it is missing out a lot.
People are building businesses and personal brands directly on social media platforms. Platforms such as Facebook and YouTube have ad programs through which businesses can market their products and brands.
How can you use social media to market your business? Read along and learn the importance of social media marketing.
What is Social Media Marketing?
Social Media Marketing (SMM) is a type of digital marketing that involves sharing content on social media platforms. SMM can be paid or free depending on which platform you are using and the approach you take.
One of the most important aspects of social media marketing is content creation. Social media content can be in the form of text, images, audios, or videos. The quality of your social media content impacts the success of your marketing campaigns.
Social media marketing costs are minimal, especially if you are not going for paid advertising. It can help reduce your marketing expenditure.
The sections below highlight some of the social media marketing concepts. The guide will help you get started if you are contemplating promoting your business on social media.
Aligning your SMM Efforts with Your Marketing Goals
Every marketing campaign has to start with clearly defined goals and objectives. From your marketing goals and objectives, you formulate a strategy that will help you get to them. If you go at it blindly, you’ll most likely waste your time and resources.
Your social media marketing strategy should be informed by the kind of business you engage in. Ask yourself the following questions in order to fully define your goals and objectives.
- Who is your target audience?
- What are you hoping to get out of your social media marketing efforts?
- Where on social media are you likely to find your target audience?
- What message do you want to pass to your audience?
- What would you want your target audience to do after receiving your message?
For instance, if you have a modelling business you should look for a social media platform that is more visual than textual. It would be smart to choose Instagram over Twitter or LinkedIn for such a business.
On the other hand, if you are promoting your digital marketing agency, LinkedIn and Twitter are better options than Instagram.
You have to fully understand how various social media platforms work to ensure you choose the right platform for your business.
What kind of marketing goals can social media marketing help you achieve?
Social media can help you achieve the following business goals;
- Boost traffic to your website
- Boost conversion rates
- Create brand awareness, identity, and loyalty
- Improve customer service
- Enhance communication and engagement
The first step towards getting these impressive benefits is creating a strong social media presence.
Creating a Strong Social Media Presence
Regardless of which social media platform you choose, you have to first create a strong presence on the platform. You can go the paid advertising route if you need immediate results. That being said, it is always better to focus on building an audience of loyal followers.
Here are some tips you could use to create a strong social media presence.
1. Create Valuable Social Content
You’ve probably heard the phrase “Content is King”. Content is the engine that drives all engagements on digital platforms. If you want to get some visibility and following on social media, you have to create content that people will love.
Keep in mind that you are not any other social media user. You are trying to build or promote business on the platform. First, you need to plan for your content.
Planning for content might involve keyword research, competitive research, and trends research. You need to find out what kind of content will attract the attention of your target audience. Competitive research will show you what kind of content other businesses in your industry are creating.
The goal is to create content that will attract an audience and drive engagements. Your presence on social media starts growing when people start engaging with you and your content.
After you’ve identified the kind of content you want to create, you have to be consistent in uploading content. Your content has to offer valuable information and also be exciting. High-value entertainment content works perfectly for platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.
2. Maintain Consistent Brand Image
You start building a brand image for your business from the time you post your first piece of content. You need to remain consistent throughout the different platforms you might be using. Each platform is different, but your business’s identity, tone, and style of engagement should remain consistent.
Try to remain consistent with your message and branding as well. While just getting started it will be difficult to get traction if your message and branding keeps changing. People will start recognizing and associating with your business and brand when they come across it enough times on social media.
3. Audience Engagement
You should never be too big to engage directly with your audience, especially if you are just getting started. Those first few followers are the ones who are going to inspire others to follow your business on social media.
Engage with them on a personal level and establish a connection with them. Even when you’ve grown big, try to engage your followers as much as possible. You might not be able to respond to every comment if you are receiving thousands of them. However, responding to a couple of them assures your followers that you are interested in their thoughts and views.
So, which social media platform should you go for once you are ready to start creating amazing content?
As mentioned above, your choice of social media platform should be informed by the kind of business you are doing.
How Do You Choose the Best Social Media Network for Marketing?
Below are brief overviews of some of the most popular social media networks. These overviews should help you understand how you should approach marketing and advertising on the different platforms. Each platform is unique and requires a unique strategy.
Facebook is the most popular social media network in the world. As of January 2021, Facebook had 2.8 billion active users from all around the world. If you are hoping to attract a massive audience for your business, Facebook is where you should get started.
Creating a presence on Facebook starts with launching a Facebook Business Fan Page. The Facebook business fan page is designed to cater to the needs of a business. Facebook users can gather important information about your business with a quick glance at the page. Make sure you fill in all the important information about your business on the page.
Facebook works perfectly for both visual and textual content. Facebook posts can be up to 63, 206 characters. You can post a whole article on Facebook.
The visual component is a crucial aspect of user experience on Facebook. You should try to make your business page and posts as visually appealing as possible.
Facebook is a platform where people go to connect with friends, read funny posts, and watch entertaining videos. You’ll connect with your target audience a lot better if you keep your tone light, friendly, and laid-back. Find a way to create infotainment content to make sure you can pass your business message but still remain fun.
Organic growth on Facebook is pretty slow, especially if your posts cannot have an entertainment aspect. As such, you should consider Facebook’s advertising program if you want to generate business leads and sales from the platform.
If your business involves the production of video content, YouTube is the best social media network for you. It is the number one platform for creating and sharing video content.
YouTube is a diverse platform and it caters for all kinds of audiences. People go to YouTube to find entertainment, news, or knowledge. YouTube also allows you to target a specific audience. Organic growth is also possible on YouTube.
To get started on YouTube, you need to first create a YouTube channel for your business. You should then consistently upload content and you’ll start to organically attract a following. If you need to reach a bigger audience immediately you can add your videos to YouTube’s paid advertising program.
Infotainment videos work great on YouTube, especially if you are hoping to get a lot of views. However, if you are focused on a specific audience, you should focus on creating content that would be valuable to them.
Twitter is a great platform for your business to connect and engage with an audience. It is an impressive social media marketing tool if you manage to attract a following. Twitter posts revolve around dialogue and communication. You can still post some audio-visual content, but it doesn’t work well as textual content.
Twitter is a perfect platform for you to post small snippets of information or adverts for your audience. Twitter allows you to post threads as well. You can still post a substantial post on it.
Twitter is also not so much entertainment-centered as compared to the other social media platforms. Therefore, you can get a little bit more direct with your business messages and use business language. You still need to find a way to make your tweets and engagements on Twitter fun. You are likely to attract more followers if your existing followers are having fun with your content and sharing it.
Make sure you are following other tweeters within your industry and engage with tweets that are related to your business. You’ll start to steadily gain followers. It takes a while to build an audience on Twitter though.
If you want your tweets to get more reach, you can sponsor them through Twitter’s paid advertising program. The program is ideal for direct advertising tweets.
LinkedIn is a very unique platform. Most of the conversions going on there revolve around business and careers. The tone of Linkedin posts and conversations is usually formal and professional. If you are thinking of connecting with professionals, thought-leaders, and other influential business people, LinkedIn is the perfect platform.
You do not have to post entertaining or fun content to get some traction on LinkedIn. You still need to ensure your content is valuable and can attract attention. The most important thing on LinkedIn is to connect with like-minded individuals and businesses you could work with.
Look for trending topics within LinkedIn and create content along those lines. It will help you attract an audience and drive engagement. You can browse the Question section and get ideas of what people are talking about.
Build Your Business Through Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing is powerful if well executed. You need to be careful because your engagements on social media can also backfire on your business. Be careful about the content you post and how you engage with your followers. Always explore how your audience is likely to react to a certain type of content before you post it.
Social media marketing is not just about posting content. If you go the paid advertising route, you must make sure you can track the progress and performance of your advertisements. You need to make sure your business is getting a return on investment (ROI). Also, growing an audience on social media is not as easy as it sounds.
If you want to build a social media presence you could use our social media marketing services. Digital Marksmen has a team of social media marketing consultants and experts who can help you build and grow a social media presence. The team will also help you use those platforms to market your business. We will also help you track the performance of your social media marketing campaigns.