For a successful marketing strategy, you need to be able to engage with your customer base. One of the most immediate ways to have a multi-directional conversation (business to customer, customer to customer, customer to prospect, prospect to business) is through social media. However, while creating an account and posting regularly might seem straightforward, there are many different components of social media that you have to get right to actually engage a conversation rather than just tweeting into the void.
Core Components of a Successful Social Media Strategy
Let’s take a look at some of the elements that you should include in your social media marketing campaign.
Listen to What’s Said on Social
As a business, you have to be in charge of starting conversations with your audience. However, if you really want to be effective, you need to learn how to listen as well. Social listening is a vital responsibility because it enables you to see and hear how others are talking about your brand, as well as to pay attention to industry trends and interactions between your competitors and fans.
Here are some tips on how to incorporate social listening into your marketing.
● Search for Your Company Name within social media platforms – in many cases, users won’t tag you in posts. This means you have to be more proactive about finding places where your brand is mentioned. Also, search for things like a company slogan or nickname that people might use.
● Follow Industry Profiles – you need to stay on top of trends and adapt to them in real-time. Be sure to follow accounts that are related to your industry and join in on the conversations they have.
● Respond as Necessary – not every mention of your brand requires recognition, but you should be actively engaged with those who talk about your business. Overall, keep in mind that you want to avoid hijacking a conversation or forcing your way in. Let your comments be related and organic.
● Have an industrious coder or programmer organize feeds to collect content in real time with keywords and hashtags that matter to your brand, or if you don’t have someone adept at this, select a social listening service that can help you rank your brand’s perception in the social sphere.
Create Quality Content
As you should know by now, most social platforms don’t sort by the newest content anymore. Sites like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter all use algorithms to determine what users see in their feed. While you can boost your posts with paid advertising, you also want to use these algorithms to your advantage. One surefire way to get noticed is by posting really, truly, valuable and compelling content in which your audience is interested. Go beyond reviews and hype videos with insights in to the “why” in your category. Why do people do this thing you’re involved in? How does it enhance or empower their experience?
Content should be varied – a mix of video, images, and text. You can also link to landing pages or your company blog. As long as you’re consistent and your material is engaging, you can expand your influence and grow a following organically.
Really Engage Your Audience
Engaging with your audience is initially responding to comments and direct messages, but you can go much further if your brand participates in pages, groups and even old-school forums to give insight. Whenever you are engaging in conversation you are increasing the presence of your brand both in the platform’s algorithm, and also in the experience of the other participants. Engagement is crucial for your brand because it illustrates that you’re paying attention. If you never respond to any messages, users will stop leaving them.
Overall, social media should be treated as yet another form of communication and dialogue. Users should be able to contact your business through these platforms, rather than having to communicate through more traditional channels. Even if your response is a link to a live chat page, that’s better than ignoring your audience altogether.
Ask for Reviews
These days, reviews are becoming increasingly necessary. Because users have instant access to reviews about businesses, they are wary of trusting a brand that doesn’t have any. Even worse, if your reviews are mostly negative, that will cause customers to flee immediately. Especially, as in the section above points out, if you aren’t engaging in a conversation. Get a negative review? Leave a constructive comment and connect with the customer to resolve their concern.
While you can’t solicit positive reviews (i.e., give us five stars and get a discount), you can encourage your customers to share their thoughts. You should take a multi-pronged approach as well. In addition to soliciting them on social platforms, be sure to talk to customers after purchases and in-store (if applicable). The more you remind users to review your business, the more of them you’ll receive.
Everyone likes a good deal, and social media is the perfect place to showcase your next offer. Whether it’s a discount, a contest, or something else that encourages engagement, you can build an audience faster with the right offer.
When creating and presenting these offers, it helps to know your platforms. For example, Facebook, or LinkedIn if your audience is there, are perfect for a video clip explaining your, while Instagram, rooted in photography, is better for a picture or infographic, though with IGTV and stories, video is becoming more significant in the Instagram space.
Although it would be awesome if you could build a massive audience organically, many brands need to utilize paid advertising to grow their following. However, there are some incredible benefits to using these tools, including:
● Targeted Demographics – focus your attention on the customers that will be most motivated to buy your product or service.
● Flexible Budgeting – you will be able to see placement and click rates so you don’t have to waste money on ads that don’t generate meaningful engagement or activity.
● Better ROI – again, the PPC model ensures that you get motivated customers. If they click on your ad, chances are that they’re interested in your business.
Calls to Action
Finally, you need to spur your following to do something on social media. It’s not enough for them to like, comment, and share your posts. While these metrics can seem appealing, they often result in awareness or brand recall, but don’t translate into real-world sales.
So, you should incorporate calls-to-action whenever possible. Lead your social followers to targeted landing pages for various purposes. Subscribing to your mailing list, buying a particular product – CTAs are a powerful tool, so use them wisely.
Let Green Vine Marketing Help You Get Social
If you want to get the most out of your social media marketing campaign, let Green Vine Marketing help. We know what it takes to build an audience and turn followers into customers. Best of all, you can get all of these benefits while letting us do the heavy lifting. Contact us to find out more.