I can see you now, “Oh no... *Face Palm* ...Not another social media marketing nut.” But just hear me out. Social media marketing is still relevant for your business. Raking close to 3 billion active social media users, we can safely say that your target audience is on social media.
More consumers are using these networks to connect with and engage with their favorite brands, as well as to discover new ones. It is essential that you position your business for growth by leveraging social media channels to increase awareness, grow your number of followers and leads, communicate with customers, and to share value. Here is a chart from Smart Insights on the use of social network sites worldwide ranked by number of active users (in millions, as of January 2017.)
With that said, 2017 is the perfect time to amplify your social marketing strategy and progress towards your business goals. We’ve outlined 7 social marketing strategies and tips you can begin implementing into your marketing plan today to build a foundation for long-term growth.
#1 Live Stream Events and Q&A Sessions
Did you know that people spend 3 times longer watching live video versus ones that have been prerecorded (Source: Social Media Today)? Tools such as Facebook Live, Instagram Stories, and Periscope are generating massive engagement on social media. It’s one of the fastest ways to build your brand and authentically connect with audiences to foster relationships.
Use these apps to your advantage in your marketing. Host live Q&A sessions, take your followers behind-the-scenes and expand on a recent blog post using live-streaming video. Promote to your list and social media channels when you’re going live to increase viewership. Finally, always end with a call-to-action that leads followers to the next step (i.e. opting into your list, register for a webinar, etc.).
#2 Share Infographics
Infographics are liked and shared on social media 3 times more than any other type of content. Don’t believe us? We created one infographic, “7 Steps to Creating a Social Media Strategy for Your Business” and it has been shared hundreds of times this month alone. That is significantly more than any other blog we have published to date, so infographics are definitely worth the extra time and effort to get your followers engaged and help in expanding your reach online.
Sharing infographics on social media is perfect for offering value to your audience and showcasing your expertise. The good news is, they can also be repurposed into a separate blog post to enhance your content strategy. You’ll extend your reach by creating a new piece of content to promote.
But don’t go all crazy turning everything into an infographic. Infographics are ideal for long-form or data-rich content. Converting these types of content into an illustrative format makes it easy for your followers to digest. You can create your own using Infogr.am or hire a designer on Fiverr.
#3 Post Customer Testimonials
Another way to quickly build trust with your followers is through customer reviews. In fact, 88% of people trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations. Sharing the experiences customers have with your brand will show that what you’re doing works and prospects will be more likely to hop on board.
Here are a few ways to begin using more customer testimonials to your advantage:
- Send an email to new customers encouraging them to share a review on your social business page. Include the link to make it easy for them to post.
- Collect, organize and schedule user-generated content in your marketing. Visuals of customers using your brand or mentioning it via hashtags is killer content for your calendar.
- Tag customers in your content thanking them for their business.
#4 Give Value through Your Blog Content
At the heart of inbound marketing is the process of sharing content that educates, solves problems, and provides useful information that will add value to your followers. Your blog is the perfect tool for positioning your brand as an expert in your industry while sending traffic to posts. In fact, social media drives 31% of all referral traffic to websites (Source: Forbes).
However, simply posting your blog link doesn’t automatically generate traffic. You must make the social media post compelling and share content that resonates with your followers. Check out these tips when promoting your blog to augment your social media marketing:
- Add visuals that complement your post. Images significantly increase engagement on social.
- Include emotional-driven and descriptive words to make your post colorful.
- Only share content that your audience wants to see. Remember, your aim is to reach your buyer personas so post more of what they desire.
- Leverage tools such as CoSchedule’s Social Message Optimizer that help you write better social media content in promoting your blog posts.
- Use a social media management app like Buffer or Hootsuite to schedule your content in advance.
#5 Create Exclusive Groups
Social media groups are excellent platforms to building a community around your brand while bringing like-minded individuals together to connect. It’s also a good space for sharing your quality-rich content, offering special promotions, and keeping people aware of the new happenings in your business. Finally, you’ll boost brand loyalty as you give customers another outlet to communicate and engage with you.
Create groups for your fans and customers to interact and stay connected with your brand. Having one especially for your customers is a great incentive and benefit to doing business with you. Share the advantages and how your group is different than others. The key is to keep it interactive and live so members see the value of being involved.
#6 Use a Content Calendar
Maintaining a steady presence on your social media channels is vital to boosting brand awareness and visibility. The more active you are, the more likely you’ll breed engagement and increase your followers.
The best way is to leverage a content or editorial calendar. You’ll gain a holistic approach to your schedule, ensure that your content supports the interest of your target audience, and keep your pages active with fresh posts. Your calendar will also keep you organized and help you identify where there are gaps in your schedule that need to be filled. It is a better approach to making sure that your social strategy is effective.
#7 Interact with your followers – yes… you should actually respond to them!
The last strategy to implement in your marketing plan by the end of 2017 is being social and interactive with your followers. It’s not enough to simply post your content and hope for engagement. This may generate some responses initially, but will quickly dwindle if you fail to respond. Besides, it is social media; people want reciprocity. They enjoy seeing likes on their posts just as much as you do!
Commit to being more social on your networks with these easy tactics:
- Like, comment, and share your followers content.
- Reach out to customers through direct messages. Show appreciation for a recent order, ask for their opinion on a given subject or offer help on how you can assist with their goals.
- Respond to comments quickly.
- Mention followers in return for using your brand hashtag in a post.
These tidbits will go far in creating memorable experiences from your brand that makes you authentic and relatable.
Your social marketing strategy will play a huge role in your overall digital marketing strategy. Implementing these tips will yield amazing returns like increased awareness, more leads and followers, and trust gained from your audience.
Are you ready to amplify your social media marketing to get in front of your audience, generate leads and boost sales? Reach out to us here and let’s chat!