Social media can be one of the best marketing tools available to your business. Not only does it give you a great ROI, but you also have a chance to turn fans into lifetime brand evangelists (especially if you become a master of engagement). However, as nearly every business under the sun is on social, it’s also not always the easiest to break into, which is why I’m giving you a few helpful tips on how to get started. Check them out below:
Assess Your Brand
One of the biggest first steps you should consider when looking to market on social media is how exactly your perception comes off on there, which is where your branding comes in. Your brand should stand for not only what you do, but what your company stands for. And while that might sound high-minded, people align themselves with brands they feel best represents them as individuals, which you’re going to need to capture before anyone starts gravitating towards your work.
The most significant point a lot of entrepreneurs miss with branding is how to be objective about what they’ve created. This aspect mainly deals with the balance between how a brand is part science as much as it is creative storytelling, breaking down the different design and ideological elements and putting them back together into a cohesive manner.
For example, according to Crowdspring, color increases brand recognition by 80 percent, which is why if I were to say something “Starbucks green” you’d not only know the exact color I’m talking about but what you think about them as a brand. Although this will take quite a significant amount of effort, it’s also something that could potentially be what separates you from the crowd, so work with a designer you trust on formulating something you’ll be proud to represent for years to come.
Know The Numbers
While most people would assume that whatever social media channels they use personally would most likely be the demographic, they need to serve, that’s not always the case. In fact, as noted by Hootsuite, there are approximately 3.2 billion people who use social media every day, which is a pretty staggering figure when you consider that’s practically half the world! And while it’s true that yes, if you capture even a fraction of that, your business could stand to grow significantly, that’s not without a calculated plan for targeting.
Targeting for social is essentially the process of looking at your demographics, as well as how you’re going to reach them. For some industries in the b2c realm, it’s much easier to see the direct line of advertising (for example, fashion or consumer products on Instagram), while b2b uses more of a blend of content marketing with their social efforts. Furthermore, don’t be afraid to diversify your audience a little bit in seeing who might be willing to gravitate towards a brand. The goal here is to find those that genuinely would feel a connection to your brand, highlighting the core elements we mentioned above.
Familiarize Yourself With The Tools
Once you’ve gotten a grasp on where to target, the next step is to learn the tools that will help you reach them. Granted, if you’ve used social media to any capacity, then you’re probably familiar with most of them, such as hashtags, promoted posts, or even location tagging. And while some of these might feel pretty intuitive, they’re also going to require quite a bit of consistency to hammer down right.
The basic structure where a lot of these different tools play their strengths is in their campaign structure. This is primarily how you’re using these to direct a certain call-to-action or focal point of conversation. After all, that’s why approximately 7 out of 10 hashtags are branded; the goal is to create a hashtag that becomes the focal point of conversation. While I’ll note that this doesn’t necessarily need to be trending or go viral, it does have to be a top people genuinely want to engage with, as engagement is the most significant win you could ask for.
Keep It Consistent
Finally, as anyone who’s a social wizard will tell you, keeping your efforts consistent will be one of the most important aspects of generating an audience. The world of social is competitive for any company, especially since approximately 86 percent of businesses are on some form of social, which is why continuously winning people over one day at a time is just a habit you’re going to have to get into. And if this sounds intimidating, the actual practice doesn’t have to be nearly as bad as you might imagine.
Starting out, it’d be wise to create a calendar of posts for your business, highlighting different content pieces and aspects you’re trying to cover. Furthermore, make it a consistent pace that you can keep up with to avoid burnout or spinning your wheels, which implementing a level of variation will also be advantageous as well. Because while it might feel uncomfortable at first, the more you get in the habit of this, the more likely you are to gain a community around your brand long-term.
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