Benefits of being social
According to Hubspot, by 2023, the number of social network users in the U.S. is expected to reach 257.4 million.
It is more important than ever for businesses to have a website and a social media presence.
Content is king when it comes to being found on Google. Adding social media to your business creates more content to feed the Google bot.
Social media campaigns help you connect to your potential clients in ways that traditional marketing campaigns may miss.
Step 1: Determine Your Market
Remember in our content strategy tips that the first step in a good content strategy is to identify your audience. This is a critical first step toward building a relevant social media outreach campaign.
HubSpot offers a breakdown of which demographic tends to use which social network:
- Teenagers (13-19) gravitate towards Snapchat, TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram.
- Soon-to-be-wives, soon-to-be-moms, and Baby Boomers (50-65) are all about Pinterest.
- Anyone under 35 can be found on Instagram.
- Young parents and grandparents alike can be found on Facebook.
- Business types and leaders rule LinkedIn.
Step 2: Establish Your Goals
When drafting your social media plan, be sure you know your goals are. Here are a few questions or ideas that you’ll want to consider when creating goals for your social media plan:
- Are you going to encourage clients to come directly to your site and buy a product?
- Are you looking to increase brand awareness so clients will be more likely to remember your business when they are shopping for products?
- Are you looking to add a more personable side to your business persona?
- Do you want to encourage conversations around topics related to your business?
Step 3: Commit to One or Two Social Networks
One of the best pieces of advice we give clients about social media marketing is, don't try to be everywhere. Mastering one or two social media platforms can be a real lifesaver. Each platform is different, and your content on each platform should be tailor-fitted to that platform.
For example, a blog post for LinkedIn will look very different from an Instagram or Facebook post.
Honing your skills for just a couple of platforms will also make you more likely to know exactly what your audience wants.
Precision is key here. Overextending can be time-consuming and detrimental. Think back to the Step 1 market you’re targeting. How might your business best serve your audience using a social network?
If you have access to beautiful product photography or a range of products geared toward visual shoppers, Instagram and Pinterest would be a great way to reach new clients. If your business produces a lot of content, such as in a blog or with regularly published articles, consider Facebook and Twitter.
Step 4: Strategize Your Sharing
There are many ways to “do” social media well, and also many ways to fail. Here are some tips to help you succeed:
- Keep it timely: When will your audience be most likely to see your posts? Aim to post then.
- Mix it up: Use the 80/20 rule: 80 percent content and 20 percent self-promotion. Posts should contain a good mix of self-promotion, client testimonials, randomness, and informational. Self-promotion includes news about your company and direct links to your website. Randomness creates a more personal feel and can include (appropriately) funny photos, quotes, or content shared from other resources. Randomness also adds a way for your target audience to engage with you.
- Consume social media: This means you’ll want to set aside 10-15 minutes to browse the Internet for things that are relevant to your business and industry. Share those posts and engage on those posts as well.
- Don’t treat it as your personal social network: Nothing will turn off a potential client quite like irrelevant posts and unprofessional behavior.
- Try to repurpose content you already have: If you have been following our other tips for content marketing, you will have plenty of content to repurpose. Trim these large pieces down to bite-size content. Share that with clients to build your business brand.
- Get visual: You know what they say “A picture is worth a 1000 words” Marketing firm MDG Advertising discovered that content paired with an image attracted 94% more views on average than content without visuals.
- Make it special: Share something on social networks that won’t be available elsewhere, such as a special promotion or giveaway.
- Keep it professional: Yes, humor and randomness have their place in social media, but be sure to always handle your haters (aka trolls and baiters) professionally. Having a plan in place ahead of time will help you navigate when something like this happens. Feeding trolls only attracts more!
Step 5: Measure and Calibrate
All business-related social networks offer analytics. This allows you to see how your posts are seen, clicked, and shared with others. Use this as valuable feedback to help you adjust how you approach audiences. You may find your target audience and followers are not as active at the time you thought. Using these metrics will help you figure out what is working, not working, and how to fix it.
It is OK to start small. With consistency and good content, you’ll build a social network that will drive clients to your business. Remember, social media is a marathon, not a race. Need more or want to leave it to the experts? Contact us to learn about how Cube Creative Design can help you meet your social networking needs.