With Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, and Twitter, social media’s power is real. Whether you own a massive corporation or are just starting a small business, social media is also the best way to connect with customers.
It can help you build your brand and grow your business exponentially.
But there’s a lot more to it than making a few posts and sending a few tweets. To use social media successfully, you need to start looking at it as a marketing tool.
Ready to get started? Here’s the entrepreneur’s guide to social media marketing.
What is Social Media Marketing?
So what exactly is social media marketing? It’s when a business uses social media platforms to promote their products and services. The goal is to increase brand awareness, and thereby, sales.
It can include:
- Posting images on Pinterest
- Having influencers on Instagram
- Running ads on Facebook
- Sharing articles on LinkedIn
- Making videos for YouTube
- Creating innovative promotions to hashtag on Twitter
There are seemingly endless ways to use social media as a marketing tool.
Social media marketing is becoming increasingly important. Why? It’s one of the fastest and most affordable ways to promote yourself.
Just by knowing a few tips and tricks, you can put social media to work for you in a meaningful, powerful way.
How Can Social Media Marketing Help Your Business?
There are a variety of ways in which social media can affect and improve your business.
For starters, it’s a great way to increase brand awareness. As long as you share reliable, relevant content, you can build up a following. From there, you turn those followers into customers.
Depending on which platforms you use, you can even sell your products. Shopping features on Facebook and Instagram let visitors buy directly from you.
You can also create a massive sales force by connecting with the right influencers and affiliates.
How to Develop a Social Media Marketing Strategy
If you want to be successful with social media marketing, the first thing you need to do is to develop a strategy.
That starts with knowing your audience. Who are you targeting? What are their interests? What kind of content resonates with them? Identify your audience’s age, gender, and geographic region. Then make sure all the content you create has your audience in mind.
The next step is to decide which platforms to use. Your audience will likely dictate this, as each platform has different types of users.
For example, only8% of people age 65 and up use Instagram, while 46% of that age group uses Facebook. 42% of women use Pinterest, but only 15% of men do. Do your research on which social media platforms cater to your particular audience.
You also must create fantastic content. From articles to reviews to photos to videos, having relevant content is critical.
The final step in our strategy is to create a calendar. Decide how often you want to post new content. Keep up with it. Be diligent in how and when you post. Original content is the only way to keep your visitors and customers coming back for more.
How to Implement a Social Media Strategy
Having a strategy and useful content isn’t enough. You’ll also need to use that strategy effectively. Here are a few clever ideas on how to do so.
Set a Clear Goal
Your goal may be to bring in X amount of dollars in new sales. Your goal may be to acquire X amount of new followers. Your goal may be to have your posts shared X amount of times. Whatever you want to get out of your campaign, define it.
Research the Competition
Before you create content, research your competition to see their advertising techniques. Knowing what the competition does is one of the best ways to stay on track and get new ideas for your content.
For example, maybe you own a roofing business. If all your local competitors are running a 25% off ad on Facebook, you may want to do the same.
Finding affiliates and influencers is another excellent way to promote your products.
Look for influencers who already have lots of followers. Try to forge relationships with them so that they’ll want to promote your products. Affiliates and influencers usually get a small percentage of the sales they generate. It benefits them to promote you as much as possible.
Update your Accounts
Before you start a new social media campaign, take the time to set up or update your own social accounts. Make sure your profile and contact information is up to date. Also, ensure that any images or current content are relevant to your target customer.
Having the wrong content or images that don’t resonate with your customer will only turn them away.
Analyse Your Results
Creating and implementing a social media marketing strategy isn’t enough. You’ll also want to spend time analysing your results.
This is important for several reasons:
- It’s a way to determine if your campaigns are actually working.
- It will let you know which channels and platforms are working. Are you getting the best results from influencers? Through content that you’ve posted on your own page? Through Facebook or Twitter ads?
- It gives you insight into where you’re getting traffic and where you’re not.
Let’s say you’re promoting two different services or products at the same time. Is one getting tons of traffic and the other getting very little? Analysing your results will provide you with all of this info and more.
Once you’ve done a thorough analysis, adjust your strategy based on those results.
Social media marketing can be tricky, especially if you’re new to it. Not up to the challenge of creating, implementing, and analysing a marketing campaign? You may consider hiring a social media marketing manager to handle it for you.
The right social media content, campaign, and strategy can turn even the smallest business into a huge success.
Dominique Daniels is the Business Manager at Broadstone River House. With over 5 years of property management experience, she begins and ends each day loving what she does. She finds joy in helping current and future residents and makes Broadstone River House a place everyone loves to call home.