An effective social media marketing campaign may be all that’s required to take your business to the next level. Social media marketing is a dynamic strategy that enhances branding, generates quality leads, and increases sales. It is a vital digital marketing tool that has gained even more relevance in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic
Unfortunately, some times, it can also be a waste of effort. The key to a successful social media marketing is to identify an effective strategy, put it to action, and then measure its success. With adequate planning and proper execution, your company could meet and even surpass the payoff you expect from investing in a social media strategy.
It is always wise to start any business operation with a solid plan. Social media marketing is no different. You could have the best marketing team in the world, but still, fail if you lack proper coordination and planning.
Without goals, it’s impossible to evaluate the performance of your social media marketing strategy. Clearly defined goals will not only push your plan forward. They will also function as definitive indicators to measure your progress.
Use the SMART goal setting strategy to define the foundation for your social media marketing effort.
Your goals should be specific. Targets such as “getting more business” are vague, and they won’t help your company determine effective measures for success. Your goals must accurately define what is expected. Here are some examples;
- Advertise a service or sell a product
- Generate traffic for your website
- Engage customers and clients
- Conduct an awareness campaign
Measurable. How will you evaluate your success? A quantifiable goal, for instance, could be to double the number of your current Facebook followers.
Attainable. You’ll want to verify that your target is achievable. i.e., Can you practically double the number of your followers?
Relevant. A relevant goal aligns closely with your business objectives. Does your target support your business’s vision, objectives or values?
Timely. Give your target a deadline. i.e. If you intend to double the number of followers you have on Facebook, you could set two months to achieve that goal.
Know your audience
Your messages won’t achieve the intended results unless they specifically appeal to your target audience. That considered, you must develop relevant buyer personas for your social media marketing campaign.
In case you didn’t know, a buyer persona is a research-driven profile that portrays a company’s target consumer. Buyer personas describe your ideal clients/customers; their interests, challenges, and decision making processes.
It is not unusual for a business to have several buyer personas. For instance, if the final user of your product needs authorization from his or her superiors before making a purchase, then each person involved in the decision-making process is a complete persona. They’ll have different expectations of your product, so you will need separate strategies to satisfy those expectations.
Buyer personas are sometimes called marketing or customer personas. The meaning remains the same regardless. Buyer personas will help you understand and connect with your customers so you’ll be more effective at finding and serving them.
There are three kinds of information that will help you identify your audience.
- Client reviews. Happy clients are an essential source of information for your buyer personas. Observe their demographics, industries, and goals to obtain a general picture of who you should target.
- Buyer pain points. What is your value proposition? What problems does your product or service solve? How will it make your customers’ and clients’ lives easier? You need to understand this to prove your product’s worth.
- Customer survey reports. Talk to the people at the front lines. These should be your sales representatives and customer service agents. What questions do customers ask most? This knowledge will help you create content that interests and engages your targets.
Choose the most appropriate social platforms
It’s often a mistake to try and develop a following on half a dozen or more social media platforms at one go. Your social media management team will be quickly overwhelmed, and as a result, the results will be far from satisfying.
You’ll do better by focusing on the social channels that are most popular with your audiences. Facebook is, by far, the largest social media platform. LinkedIn is also an excellent place for businesses to establish a presence. They may seem like the right place to start, but remember, it all depends on your target audience. If they’re mainly active on platforms like Instagram and snap chat, then it could be pointless to invest elsewhere.
Where are your competitors?
Identify the channels your competitors use most. Study their profiles and the people who follow them. You don’t have to mimic what they do, but seeing the channels where they are most popular will reveal the areas that need a more significant portion of your marketing resources. A successful social media strategy requires large amounts of time to succeed. It is, therefore, far better to pick a channel or two and invest a lot in them than it is to take on five or six channels at the same time.
Social media marketing requires consistency, so posting your content at irregular intervals will not get you good results. The need for consistency also applies to your brand’s tone and positioning.
You should always cater to your targeted customers (buyer personas) while you share content.
Curate content. You could post articles and industry information from other authors to fill your content calendar. Avoid anything that sounds too much like a sales pitch. It will scare your readers away.
Nearly half of all buyers consider influencer reviews when comparing products. That’s how vital an influencer’s recommendation is. People trust such individuals because they have established themselves as credible sources of accurate information.
You’ll want to compile a list of the individuals with expert knowledge about the service or product you sell. The ones who’ll have a large social media following are the influencers. By reaching out and establishing a relationship with these figures, you’ll reach more potential clients.
Expand your audience
The more people that view your content, the better your results. Your social media management team should work on growing your audience across all the social media platforms relevant to your product or service.
- Existing customers. Connect with satisfied customers on social media. Send them new content, product updates, and industry insights. If you do it well, your messages will convert them into repeat customers.
- Paid ads. Organic reach can be remarkably effective. However, companies are increasingly turning to paid advertising to grow their audiences. Ads will help you capture audiences you could never reach through organic methods.
Engage your audience.
For social media marketing to succeed, you must interact with your followers.
- Social media was never intended to be a one-way communication channel. Offer personal responses to new followers, answer queries, and like other posts.
- If there are other individuals you know would enjoy a particular piece of content, then tag them when you make posts about it. Doing so helps establish a unique personal relationship with your audience.
This post has covered the essential prerequisites for a successful social media strategy. By following the tips shared, you’ll improve the performance of your social marketing campaigns, and increase the profitability of your business. Social media marketing is a strategy that requires patience and diligence to succeed. That said, the rewards far outweigh the risk involved.