The way things look now, you wouldn’t think that social media started as merely a way to socialize online.
Today, social media is one of the most potent business tools available, which isn’t surprising. After all, more than three billion people are on social media, and it would be foolhardy for businesses big and small not to use that level of reach to achieve their goals.
Whether you’re running a big company or a small local shop, establishing a social media presence has become a must in a world where practically everyone has access to social media.
Transforming social media into a powerful tool for your business, however, is not as simple as creating an account.
If you’re going to market your business on social media, you have to have a strategy in place. Your social media strategy will serve as your guide as you advance your business goals on the platforms of your choice.
Here are tips that will help you come up with a social media marketing strategy that will allow you to use social media as a powerful business tool effectively.
Figure Out Why You’re Going On Social Media In The First Place
In all likelihood, your reasons for getting into the social media marketing arena may include the following:
- Connect with customers
- Boost brand awareness
- Drive traffic to their website
- Generate leads
- Increase sales
If you count all of the above as the primary reasons you’re going on social media, well and good. With an entire social media marketing team behind you, reaching all the goals listed above is realistic.
However, if you’re a one-person team doing social media marketing for your business, you might want to hold your horses. Social media is a lot of work, and working on achieving all of your goals at the same could end up burning you out, with little to show for it.
If you’re a one-person social media marketing team, focusing your initial efforts on engaging with your customers and increasing your brand awareness would make a lot more sense. The other goals can come later.
Identify And Know Your Customers
At a certain point, you will have to post and share content to get your social media activity off the ground. The question is, do you even have any idea what type of content to offer your audience?
To know what type of content to provide your audience, you have to identify your audience first. This is where creating an audience or buyer personas comes in.
Audience or buyer personas are generalized, detailed, and semi-fictional descriptions of people you consider your ideal customers. To create them, you have to come up with a questionnaire for actual people to answer as you conduct your research.
When interviewing actual customers as part of your effort to create buyer personas, have them answer questions that cover plenty of ground, including:
- Career path
- Life goals
- Hobbies and interests
- The company where they work
- The industry where their company belongs
- Their source of information
- Criteria for selecting a vendor
- What their typical day looks like
You can come up with as many questions as you see fit. Once all answers are in, you can then use the data to craft audience personas, which will give you a general idea about who your customers are and what they want. Only then can you come up with ideas on the type of content to provide them.
Choose A Social Media Platform
When choosing a social media platform, you will need to take into account your business goals, ideal customer, and your style. That’s because some social media platforms are more suited to your business than others, and you need to make sure you pick the right one.
Are you trying to build a community? Check out Facebook, which has more than two billion monthly active users.
Instagram, on the other hand, maybe more up your alley if your business offers products and services for women aged 18-29, who comprise 68% of its demographic.
LinkedIn, meanwhile, is great if B2B consumers are your target demographic.
Post High-Quality Content
Once you have settled on a social media platform, you can start posting content that you know your audience will find relevant, useful, and engaging. Some of the content you can post are:
- High-quality images
- Industry news
- Relevant interviews of people in your industry
You can put up original content, or you can share content curated from other sources.
Track And Measure Results
One of the most wonderful things about social media marketing is that all results are trackable and measurable. By keeping an eye on social media metrics such as engagement, shares, reach, volume, and time spent on the website, you should be able to see whether your efforts are working or not.
Of course, social media analytics tools make tracking and measuring results easier. Whether you go for paid or free ones is entirely up to you.
Adjust Your Strategy Accordingly
Ideally, we all would want our approach to social media marketing to go perfectly the first time around. Good if they do, and it’s alright if the results you measured say they didn’t.
Always let the social media results on hand shed light on which tactics to continue, which ones to give an extra chance to, and which ones to shelve completely.
For all its widespreadness and dominance, social media marketing is still a young field. As the years go by, it will evolve some more. Make sure you stay updated on all future developments.
About the Author
Gabby Klesser is the Outreach Manager for LA Web Design, a digital marketing agency that has assembled a team of expert web designers and digital marketing strategists. She often writes on topics such as social media, technology, marketing, and starting a nonprofit.