Today’s marketers need to be active on social media channels to be relevant. Why? Because it’s where their audiences are spending an increasing amount time multitasking and making decisions.
Just absorb these current facts*:
Should your company have a social media presence across all channels? Not necessarily. While it’s true that Facebook is still the largest social media network, you need to find out where your audience is participating.
There is no magic one-size-fits-all approach. You shouldn’t feel you need to be everywhere, but you don’t want to limit your efforts to just one platform either. The key is having a firm grasp of your audience demographics and behavior to best allocate your resources.
Clients always ask us what type of content they should be posting. We like to first identify their goals, and then develop a social media content strategy that includes a variety of posts and paid ads when appropriate. Paid ads on social media are a cost-effective way for you to target specific audience demographics outside of your following.
Our content strategy phase includes research and writing, stock photo purchasing, and graphic design elements designed to work together to inform, excite and influence your audience. We generally recommend that clients follow a 70% / 20% / 10% posting rule as a guide. Let’s break this down:
This includes everything from relevant news, recent events, photos of your company in action, links to interesting articles or videos, contests, surveys, really anything that portrays your company in a good light. Be creative, watch what your competition is doing, and always keep it positive.
Sharing posts from reputable organizations can help improve your standing and create a consistent representation of your values. Promoting other business’s events, liking their pages, and tagging their posts can help you build meaningful partnerships.
These are any posts intended to sell or endorse your product or service. They can be very effective, but be careful not to turn your social media site into a constant sales pitch or you’ll quickly disengage your followers.
Social media marketing is a powerful tool, but to maximize its effectiveness it must be synchronized with all your other activities.
Before you commit to any social media marketing plan, make sure you have the right resources to drive your brand and spark meaningful conversations. This is a time-consuming process! Not only that, but new platforms, tools and channels surface constantly so be ready to keep up. If you are managing the process in-house, here are some helpful simple tips:
1. Set goals. Are you looking to drive traffic to your website? Increase engagement? Generate sales? Determine your benchmarks so
you can measure performance later.
2. Get organized. Identify your platforms, develop your content, create a calendar, and establish a budget.
3. Limit the number of owners. Doing so will help you communicate a consistent message, look, and voice.
4. Use scheduling tools. They’ll help you work efficiently in chunks to save time.
5. Be extremely detail-oriented. Train yourself to carefully read and re-read every post before publishing. The most innocent slip can cause a lot of agitation.
6. Avoid being reactive. Take a breath. Consider the consequences of what you are about to post. Don’t get caught up in the current battle of the day.
7. Understand how and when to use hashtags. Be specific (#ClevelandMarketingFirm instead of #MarketingFirm). Avoid using your brand name (#ColumbusMarketingAgency instead of #LinearCreative). Aim to have more content words than hashtags words.
8. Don’t be afraid to engage. You have a receptive audience that’s accustomed to responding in real time.
9. Get up to speed on analytics. By measuring your engagement, clicks, and conversions, you’ll know what’s working and what’s not.
10. Have fun! Social media can be challenging, but it’s a great way for you to put your communication skills into action.
*Source: Neilsen Social Media Report, January, 2017