The Right Strategies for Social Media Success
Over the past few years, businesses have been investing greater time, money and resources for better online marketing outcomes. It is expected that in 2019, social media spend alone will cross $30 Bn in the USA, with more than 90% of the companies using it for marketing purposes.
If you are in this tussle of optimizing your online ROI, you need to formulate the right strategy for a bigger share of the customer engagement pie. Online and specifically, social media marketing has become unpredictable and dynamic, ever upgrading into something better. The strategy that worked for you last quarter is most probably obsolete, thus, we urge you to ask these three core questions which will always help extract the most out of your social media efforts.
Are you on the right Social Media platform?
There are a number of reasons why budget allocation to different social media platforms can be tricky. First, these platforms have their crests and troughs, e.g. MySpace which was once very popular quickly got replaced by the likes of Facebook and Twitter. And these platforms are slowly being overtaken by the likes of Instagram. So ensure that you invest in a platform that is likely to sustain its popularity.
Second, these platforms often cater to different demographics. Ensure that the one you choose to invest in most aligns with your target segment and marketing goals. For example,
- A fashion brand operates via its aesthetic appeal among the youth and should prefer Instagram over Facebook. In this scenario, the brand can leverage Instagram’s focus on photographs for high user engagement. Similarly, a travel and hospitality brand should also definitely invest to evoke consumer interest through Instagram
- A restaurant business that primarily aims to increase footfalls through coupons and offers could use Facebook which provides a solid platform for this purpose.
- Twitter has become the most favorite platform for the media & news industry. We also regularly see updates from eCommerce companies and online service providers which sometimes turns into an interesting banter and this keeps users highly involved
- LinkedIn, the networking platform is most suitable if you are into B2B or education industry
Third, each of these platforms provides different levels of flexibility to their users. For example, there is no selective showcase of content on Instagram. If a user is interested in your content, they can follow your business or stumble on it through hashtags. This is unlike Facebook, which requires you to provide demographic details for targeting
Do you have a team of collaborators?
Platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Reddit have their own algorithms to determine your post’s traction. They use this data to assess how much visibility to offer to your post. Thus, having a team of collaborators for social media marketing of your product or service is imperative for its success.
As a business, you can leverage your internal and external contacts to build this team. Your employees can act as evangelists for your product or service by engaging on the post as soon as it is up. Keeping your employees updated with this information becomes very easy with collaboration tools like Facebook Workplace or Slack. These apps are very intuitive and easy to navigate and come with loads of other features that you can utilize to keep the employee group or channel active.
You may also share your latest campaigns with external contacts through a mailing list. It is likely that your external group is bigger than your internal group. Moreover, this group is expected to be unbiased in their engagement with your posts, which makes them more desirable. However, this approach has a couple of caveats that you should consider –
- Be ready to engage with your mailing list before expecting them to engage with your post – this is important as the mail open rates are often low and your mail’s subject line is the decision lever.
- Subject lines have a big impact on open rates (and subsequently engagement as well). Pick a subject line that delivers maximum ROI.
- It is important to comply with the platform’s terms of usage while collaborating for your post’s engagement. For instance, Reddit has strong rules on brigading and vote manipulation. As per the terms, you may encourage visiting the post, but you should not incentivize upvotes on your submission.
Do you engage promptly?
So far we have established the need to choose the right social media platform and collaborating effectively. The third important investment after money and resource is the time you devote to your post.
Engage promptly with users on posts and respond to relevant topics of discussions. This way, a relationship can be built with your audience. Your post should also have a Call To Action that would allow users to sign up for your mailing list or sales funnel.
Several platforms facilitate this level of involvement, for example, Reddit users subscribe to ‘subreddits’ that interest them. With a premium Reddit account, you can ‘gild’ users who make valuable inputs about your brand. It will encourage more users to discuss your brand, thus, improving the visibility of your post.
You may want to revisit your current strategy once you figure out the answer to these questions for your business. But, if you are already doing everything on the list, you are definitely at the top of the pyramid.