It goes without saying that social media plays an important role in the marketing efforts of many businesses today.
In fact, this has almost become a starting point from where most businesses look for potential customers.
Having an effective social media strategy can prove to be the difference between the success and failure of any business.
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Doing Social Media Strategy the Right Way
Of course, all this is easier said than done. However, there are simple and effective ways that can help you devise a social media marketing plan that will be perfect for you.
While preparing a social media strategy plan, the important thing to keep in mind is that it is not all about racking up millions of likes and followers.
In the same way, do not think that all you have to do is run a few paid campaigns and your profile or page will be flooded with users.
This is especially important to understand for small business owners.
However, there is also no doubt that social media is the best way to find qualified leads and potential customers for what you are offering.You just have to present your brand in the most effective way possible.
At the end of the day, it is all about getting your social media strategy definition right, one that works well for you and your business.
Using the social media strategy marketing approach for your small business is challenging but you do not need to be daunted or overwhelmed by it.
There is a convenient, effective, and inexpensive way of doing social media marketing that will bring maximum results for your small business.
In this piece, we will discuss some useful tips that you can adopt to grow your business with the power of social media. So, let’s get into it.
1. First Things First, Start with a Clear Plan for Social Media Strategy
During Planning, you have to define your Social Media Goals :
Raise Awareness of Your Brand ? Measuring Loyalty ?.
In general, there are seven social media goals you can have ( may more depends on your objectives):
Each of your goals should be (Aka S.M.A.R.T. goal framework )
Being a business owner, you must know that every effective business strategy starts with a comprehensive plan.
This rule applies to social media marketing for small businesses as well. As it is easy and completely free to post on social media sites, you can probably start doing so straightaway.
However, if these actions are not backed by a proper plan, then there is no point of posting stuff.
This is because you won’t have any way of knowing what you are actually trying to achieve with all these efforts.
Also, you won’t be able to tell if you have achieved your desired goals or not.
Therefore, it is important to have a detailed plan and social media strategy template in place that will outline what you are trying to achieve with your efforts online.
2. Know Your Competitors
Competitors play an important role in any business strategy and social media marketing is no different.
Of course, you are not going to copy or emulate what your competitors are doing but understanding how effectively (or ineffectively) they are making use of social media is important.
This will help you figure out what you need to do in order to be successful. So, carry out a detailed analysis of your competitors’ social media activities so that you know what you need to improve upon.
3. Create a Detailed Social Media Calendar
This is more of a roadmap that will show you what to post, where to post, and at what time.
In this way, you will be able to deliver your message in the right way and at the right time.
Furthermore, this calendar should also include plans for the content mix that you intend to put in front of your customers.
As a social media strategy example, you should ideally use about 80% of the content to inform the audience about your product or service.
The other 20% should be used for the purpose of brand promotion and audience engagement.
4. Choosing the Right Platform for your Social Media Strategy
Using your instincts to decide what platform is mostly used by your target audience is not a good idea.
For example, your instincts (based on the things you have casually observed around you) might tell you that you should focus on Instagram or Snapchat while keeping Facebook on the down low.
This will be a terrible mistake on your part because research suggests otherwise. Even with the ever-growing popularity of social media platforms other than Facebook..
Zuckerberg’s creation remains the undisputed leader in the world of social media.
No matter which generation of people you are talking about, the majority of them still use Facebook the most.
Of course, you will have to make use of a combination of platforms that will give you the best chance of reaching your audience.
You just have to do proper research into it and not rely on gut feelings or instincts.
Infographic - Which Social Media Platforms Are Best Suited for Your Business?
5. Knowing Your Audience
Do you really have the right idea about who is your potential customer? What is their age limit, interest, preferences, or expectations? Or are you just going by instinct again?
Knowing the right answers to the above questions is very important. Social media can help your small business target the right audience at the most basic level.
To know exactly who your audiences are, you need to compile the data of your existing customer base and dig deeper with the help of social media analytics. You can use tools like this socialbakers.
This exercise will help you have a better picture of who is buying what from you and who is interested or reacting to what products or service.
After that, you can revisit your designed social media plan and make changes into it accordingly. It will help you fully focus on the clients who are really interested in your products/services.
6. Building Relationships
Social media brings a unique benefit as compared to other marketing patterns. It allows you to communicate with your customers directly.
This means that you have a wonderful opportunity to find out exactly what your customers are looking for.
This is one of the reasons why more than 93% of the people who follow small and medium-sized businesses online actually prefer to buy directly from the brand that they are interacting with.
The role of the intermediary is often eliminated as a result of this.
I use MobileMonkey to build a close relationships with my audience. A great tool generate leads through Messenger.
When people come across your unique content, you are in a position to jump in and communicate with them regarding your offerings.
You can better reply to their queries and also find out which parts of that particular piece of content were well liked and which were not.
Such open-ended communication helps businesses in building greater trust with their customers. Keep in mind that effective customer relationship management always brings great rewards.
It also helps business owners in making connections with other entrepreneurs and influencers in the field.
7. Expanding Your Audience
Once you have reached a specific position in your target market, you can use different social media tools to reach out to a new market group.
Using targeted options like Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram can help you reach out to new potential customers who might be interested in what you are offering.
8. Visualization is Important
Visual presentation of information is always going to have more impact compared to other types.
Research from Twitter indicates that people are thrice as likely to engage with tweets that come with visual presentations such as info graphics, videos, photos, or even GIFs.
Studies show that people only remember 10% of what they hear once 72 hours have passed. But, if you pair material with a relevant image , humans can remember up to 65% of the info after 3 days.
Social media also has a strong influence on real-world actions of many users.
This is especially true of millennials who are much more likely to do something after seeing it on any social media site.
This might include visiting a particular restaurant after seeing its review on their Facebook or Instagram feed.
In the same way, they might travel to a specific place on the recommendation of some popular social media influencer.
Snapchat, Pinterest, and Instagram are visual networks in particular. If you are able to generate good content on these platforms, then you can hold any user’s attention.
Even if you are not offering a beautiful product or the most attractive service, it is important to have compelling content that will enhance customer engagement with your brand.
9. Quality Over Quantity
“Excellence comes when we balance quality with quantity.”
This is the secret to success for pretty much any business anywhere in the world. There are plenty of social media marketing options for small businesses but it is not necessary to use them all.
Make sure you are using the right platform that will help you get your message across in the right way.
The most important thing is to create high quality content.
It is better to have high quality content published on a few platforms than to have list upon list of online places that publish substandard content from your side.
The latter will bring no good for your business and all your efforts will probably have been in vain.
It is also important to make sure that all your social media posts are bringing some value to your business.
Keep In Mind That Social Media Is All About Building A Strong Relationship With Your Customer Rather Than Taking Shots In The Dark.
10. Using the Right Tools
This is very important if you are going to use social media in the right manner. Quite often, it is not about how many social media channels you are using.
It is about the value being created by the few under your use.
Like the importance of quality over quantity was discussed previously, making use of the Right Tools is also vital.
Whether Facebook or Instagram (or any other) will be a better platform for a particular marketing activity is something that you need to be very good at identifying. Carry out proper research before making such decisions.
You may like also My Resources Page.
Social media has become a vital avenue for the marketing of small and medium-sized businesses.
The reduction in cost and value enhancement that results from the application of an effective social media strategy can make all the difference.
Further Readings :