Your Social Media Game Plan
Social media is no longer a choice but a necessity, as over 70% of businesses are on social media. It is now a question of how to best use utilize the platforms available—or even just where to start.
If you've never used social media, we recommend you start on Facebook. You don't have to take over the world, but you want to be where everyone already is. Up to 69% of US adults use the platform, of which 74% of those visit Facebook at minimum once per day.
Not only are there more people on Facebook, but the metrics available offer a plethora of data to help small business gain big insights. The other thing we love about Facebook is the ability to run some super-targeted ads.
If you're looking for a successful social strategy, we recommend you start with Facebook. Once you've mastered it, go ahead and look for other platforms that make the most sense for your audience.
Make your Strategy Comprehensive
The majority of business owners think of social media as an easy tool that provides them with a way to advertise at no cost; by using this logic, you won't get far. While organic social media is unpaid, it shouldn't be the only part of a successful marketing strategy.
Attention should be focused on both because each serves a purpose. Organic social media is best for communicating with existing customers and establishing your brand's online presence. Conversely, paid social media efforts are best for reaching a new audience and for promoting specific offers/products. The combination of the two will solidify your presence and lead your strategy too much greater success.
Keep the Conversation Moving
Your audience expects a quick reply. If they ask a question or leave a comment on social media, show them that your business cares by attending to their needs right away, or someone else will.
The stakes are high when it comes to prompt responses. A study conducted by Sprout Social revealed that the top three brand actions that encourage a consumer to make a purchase are: being responsive (48%), offering promotions (46%) and providing educational content (42%).
Keep Your Audience Engaged
In that same study by Sprout Social, sharing compelling visuals came in fourth when discussing the likelihood of a purchase. Regardless of which social platform you are using, people love images and infographics, not to mention videos! A compelling visual will not only create more engagement from your audience, but it is much more likely to increase your reach.
Don't Bore Your Audience.
Now that you've worked hard to build your audience, you don't want them to turn off notifications from you. There are plenty of ways for those who follow your page to ignore you, so don't give them a reason to block you or hide you. Make sure that your notifications stand out from the crowd, and that they are of interest to your market base.
One of the reasons consumers will unfollow a page is because of too many promotional messages. We've seen this time and time again, yet companies continue to do it. Your audience has limited time, and if you don't have something of value to offer, they will go elsewhere.
Keep in mind that as the tools expand to offer even more benefits to business owners, they tend to get more complex. Expect to spend some quality time on your social media also before you see any benefits. Don't give up.
Despite the length of time it may take to manage your social media successfully, it will be worth it. Much like a gym membership, merely having one won't make a difference; you have to use it often and correctly.
We aren't going to sugarcoat it. Having the right social media presence is going to take time, and it is going to require a strategy. Posting off-the-cuff isn't a long-term strategy, and it could end up hurting your brand more than helping it.
Not sure you are ready to handle social media? We are here to help. Let us help you increase sales through a customized social media strategy.