Managing a social media channel is somewhat like creating a magazine or running your own TV network. Each channel, you can produce a series of unique content. You can syndicate your content to other channels (e.g. cross-posting from Snapchat to Instagram). You can have reruns of fan favorites to fill in for empty time-slots (#ThrowBackThursday), and commercial breaks to sell your products.
Defining your content mix
the recurring formats and post types you’ll rely on—makes it easier to think up and produce social content while adding a rhythm to your posting schedule to offer your audience both variety and consistency at the same time. Otherwise, you’ll wind up scrambling for something to publish every day.
Most social media accounts worth following make an implied promise to their audience that they consistently fulfill. For business owners, it often starts with a question:
Beyond your products, how can you consistently provide value to your target audience? It’s not only about what you post, but how you allocate your resources (time, money, creativity) to maintain your social media presence on a specific channel. Some ideas will warrant a greater investment because they help achieve a number of your goals at once.
But within your content mix, you want to also have ideas you can plan for in advance, reproduce, and schedule to go out on a regular basis. For example, you might feature a customer testimonial every Tuesday and share a quote graphic every Wednesday and Friday. These pieces that are relatively easy to turn around can keep your social media calendar full while you build out more elaborate assets, such as a promotional video or a blog post.
The content mix you develop can incorporate the following:
News: Information about what’s happening in your industry or posts that are based on what’s trending at the moment.
Inspiration: Motivation to use your products or pursue a certain lifestyle, such as quote graphics or photos from around the world.
Education: Share fun stats, tutorials, and facts or how-to posts from your blog or YouTube channel.
Product/promotional posts: High-quality product shots of your products being used, demo videos, testimonials, or feature explanations can help you achieve your ultimate goal of getting sales. You can often run these as ads after you create them.
Contests and giveaways: A contest or free download in exchange for an email is a great way to promote something of value to both you and your audience other than your products.
Customer/influencer features: Shots or videos featuring your customers or the people they follow.
Community events: Share meetups, fundraisers, or learning opportunities, especially if you’re a local business.
Q&A: Ask your audience a question or make a request to elicit responses, such as ‘Tag a friend who’s always late”, or answer a common question that you get from customers.
Behind-the-scenes: Share how your product is made or what you’re doing to grow your business to offer some transparency that your audience can relate to. Giving your audience a look into the humans behind your business can go a long a way to create trust or build your personal brand as a founder.
And more: Get creative and try to come up with a content mix that differentiates you from your competitors.
Aim for about 5-7 content archetypes to start off with, balancing your content mix with post formats that you can quickly create with a couple that might take some time to produce, like a product demonstration video, as well as posts that aim for sales and posts that just seek to delight and grows your audience.
Based on my example of selling LED shoes to an audience of dancers and music festival goers, I might start with the following content archetypes, tying each one to different goals until I have a healthy mix:
Promote a post to a popular product in my store. (Sales)
A relatable meme about EDM culture. (Awareness and engagement)
Share a roundup blog post of top 10 music festivals/songs/etc. this summer and ask for audience opinions. (Engagement and creating demand)
Share a cool dance video from YouTube. (Audience building and engagement).
Share a popular song from Spotify. (Engagement)
Highlight a specific product feature (Sales)
Share a dance video or picture submitted by a customer and tag them (Engagement, sales, create demand).
Some of these ideas might be flops. Some might be hits. The point is to come up with goal-oriented concepts to test out.
Vary your programming so it doesn’t lean too heavily on sales posts. When new followers land on your account, their perception of your brand will likely be your last 3-6 posts (depending on the platform). If they’re all explicitly selling your products or services, it will turn them off.
Note: Keep in mind that anything you create can potentially be promoted again and again to your audience over time, or on other channels. Don’t shy away from eventual “re-runs”, especially if a certain post has proven to give your traffic, engagement, or sales a bump.
To get you inspired to come up with your own content mix, here are some ideas that you can borrow from brands that are doing well on social media.
Get customers to contribute content
Luxy Hair relies on style education via their blog and YouTube channel to market their hair extensions, which no doubt takes time to produce.
But on their website and in their marketing communication, they encourage their customers to share before and after pictures on Instagram using a branded hashtag. These photos are then shared on Luxy’s own Instagram account or store using one of the available Shoppable Instagram apps.
If your products beg to be shared on social media, you can harness that to source social content that you can use for your own social media posts, tagging your customers to give them the spotlight.
Shots of your product being used
While it’s great to have several content formats to add variety to your social media marketing mix, even one proven content archetype can do wonders for growing your audience if published consistently.
Letterfolk’s Instagram is a great example of how developing a theme through what you post can make social media publishing less work in the long-run without sacrificing engagement. Nearly all of their posts feature the same premise: an interior shot of their flagship letter boards sporting a relatable quote.
They can succeed with this strategy because each post helps them achieve several of their goals at once, namely:
Create high-level engagement with relatable quotes.
Grow a following through an account with a clear and consistent premise.
Drive sales by showing off the product in action.
Think about how you can develop your own content formats to chase several of your goals with a single post.
Humor that relates to your target audience
Being funny can go long way in getting your audience to engage with what you post. If humor lends itself well to your brand, then by all means make room in your social media marketing for content that elicits a laugh.
Squatty Potty is a great example of this. Their flagship product (a toilet stool that optimizes your posture in the bathroom) would be hard to sell seriously. So they don’t.
Instead they rely on viral content formats, such as memes and funny videos, to get engagement on Facebook and other channels.
If a joke is a hit, then you can consider paying to promote it to reach a larger audience (few things spread better on the internet than laughter).
When you’re starting out, you might not have the time or money to produce high-quality content that’s customized for each social channel. Start small with a few ideas to experiment with. As long as you maintain a regular schedule and keep an eye on how your posts are performing, you can adapt your content mix over time.
Additional tips and resources
Be visual: Even if you’re not a designer or video editor, you can use free tools like Canva (social graphics), Adobe Spark or Lumen5 (videos), Meme Generator and more to produce shareable content.
Always aim: Tie each post in your content mix back to your target audience and one or more of the goals you established. Knowing what to measure will help you evaluate the success of a particular idea and inform your strategy over time.
Curate and create: To avoid becoming overwhelmed creating original content, try to curate and remix content as well. Be sure to tag and credit your original sources and ask for permission if you’re unsure.
Facebook has changed, now is the time to see if your strategy is really bringing in the results you want. A few years back, building a community of loyal Facebook followers was a relatively simple: launch a page, regularly post compelling content, answer questions, respond to comments and watch your fan count rise. Since then Facebook has become an increasingly competitive space for brands, especially as personal content from friends takes precedent over promotional content from businesses. This might be great for you as a Facebook user but it can be challenging as a business. The good news? Start optimizing your Facebook page to increase revenue and drive customers to your business.
Facebook Changes and Why It Matters
Recently, Facebook announced that they would start serving users content they are most likely to “engage” with. Essentially, content that is getting people talking is most likely to show up first in a user’s News Feed. That means the “special” or personal announcement posts that always collect comments from friends and family will appear first (think statuses such as “we’re having a baby!”. What it means for businesses is that these personal announcements will be prioritized over a “blowout sale tomorrow” post.
Reasons to Use Facebook and How to Optimize
Facebook is a great platform for a reason, it has over 1 billion active users and many of them spend an entire hour on the site every single day, Facebook remains a key site for any business to reach their existing and prospective customers. Also, 30% of users report liking, commenting or sharing Facebook ads that pop up on their desktop or mobile site. The key is to create conversation-sparking content that people crave, and Facebook is looking for.
Keep in mind that authenticity is key: tell your business’ story in an honest way that shows how unique you are – and why you play an important part in your local community. For example, say you’re a local barber: instead of posting a status about back to school haircuts, you could post videos of weekly style tips from one of your most outgoing employees. Post a Facebook Live video of a local celebrity — say, a radio host – getting a trim. When you start to think outside the box of your current Facebook strategy – you’ll realize that the opportunities are endless. It’s all about finding those shareable moments and building content around that.
Targeting (And Investing) With a Real Purpose
It’s easy to get overwhelmed with organic results and opting to invest in your content to “boost” it, in hopes of getting more results. But if you’re not spending your marketing dollars in a more strategic way, you’re most likely missing the mark. Root your Facebook strategy in a solution that’s “smart” — in other words, that learns what your audience loves over time and invests your Facebook budget in the places that drive you the most leads.
Engage With All Your Leads
Ever log into your Facebook account and realize you have four or five direct messages asking about your service? Better yet, do you remember responding to them and realizing it was “too little, too late?” Immediacy is everything when it comes to managing your leads – and this remains true in the world of Facebook. Our smart technology has taken this into account and will send leads directly to your smartphone or email – depending on your preference. From there, you can route your leads to the person best suited to respond. This is a huge time saver and will win you major brownie points from your existing and prospective clients looking to get more information.
Partner With a Professional
Given the reach of Facebook, the power of the platform as a revenue-driving source can’t be argued. But trying to manage it on your own can be tough, especially if you don’t have a dedicated marketing resource on your team. It might be a tall order to make Facebook really work as a lead-driver but with the right solutions and a few key moves – the social site could be a core part of your marketing success! it’s all about teamwork – and partnering up with a team of experts positioned to help you win is a no-brainer.
Instagram has recently released new features that can be used to promote and enhance your business online. In June of 2018, it was reported that Instagram had over 1 billion monthly active Instagram users, and almost 25 million business profiles on Instagram. The number of active advertisers on Instagram is 2 million. With these kinds of numbers, it’s clear that using Instagram is a powerful platform to promote your local business.
Recently, Instagram introduced a raft of new features which can help you to promote your business. New features include Instagram Stories, Instagram Live, IGTV, and Instagram Shopping. This article goes over a few ways to help you promote and boost your local business.
Although this feature has been around for a while, it’s still worth mentioning. The Instagram Stories feature allows you to share time-limited images and videos with your followers with stickers and text overlaid. Local businesses can leverage this Instagram feature to promote their business in a creative way that highlights personality in a way other formats struggle to. After all, as of June 2018, more than 400 million daily active Instagram users using Instagram Stories.
28 minutes is the average time that Instagram users spend on Instagram Stories. With the introduction of this new feature, Instagram opened up new opportunities for businesses. But how can a local business use Instagram Stories effectively? You can use Instagram Stories to create buzz around your newly developed product or service just before the launch. This kind of a teaser will surely catch the attention of your loyal followers, and they will start spreading the word for you.
You can also use Instagram Stories to demonstrate your products, showcasing how they work under different circumstances. Short, yet helpful guides on how to use your product will help you promote it more effectively.
Instagram Live allows businesses to broadcast video in real time. Instagram Live offers a huge opportunity for local businesses to boost their engagement and win the trust of their followers and customers. A couple of innovative ways you can use Instagram Live are to showcase how your services or products work and showcase live tutorials. Instagram Live videos can be up to one hour long, which means you can make engaging and lengthy videos to talk about your services and products. You can also host an interview or an interactive Q&A session with a live audience. Why not take questions from a live audience and answer them? It will increase the engagement rate! When you’re organizing a live Q&A session, make sure you inform your followers in advance that it’s coming up so that they can get their questions ready.
Once you are live on Instagram, ask your audience to send their questions via the comment section present at the bottom of the mobile screen. This will make your Live session much more interactive and engaging. Your followers can also react to your Live videos by clicking on ‘like’ or ‘love’.
IGTV (Instagram TV)
Instagram launched IGTV, which is a long-form video that can last anywhere between 15 seconds to 60 minutes. Bear in mind that only verified accounts can make videos up to 60 minutes long. For unverified Instagram accounts, the maximum video length is 10 minutes. You can use IGTV from within the main Instagram app or download the standalone app for free. The app is available for both iOS and Android.
You can leverage IGTV to share some funny and engaging behind-the-scenes videos from an event, or you can simply give a tour of your workplace and introduce your hard-working team to your followers.
Because verified accounts can record videos up to 60 minutes, you could also share a pre-recorded webinar or product demonstration with your followers. Or you could use the feature to record an event you’re holding or attending. You can also leverage this feature to create and share your brand’s story to build a connection with your followers and promote your business.
IGTV is still a new feature, and as they’re testing the waters a little, advertising isn’t yet available, but it has a lot of potential for advertising and marketing, so it’s very possible that one-day businesses will be able to increase their reach and traffic through this channel. Similarly to YouTube, IGTV videos actually have their own URLs, which is a first for Instagram. This means that sharing and promoting videos after the broadcast is much easier and more effective.
This new Instagram feature is a real game-changer for local businesses, as it allows businesses to tag products in their standard Instagram posts. Once prospects click on the tagged item, they are then directed to the product detail page, which can provide more information about the product and push prospects to make a purchase. You can use this feature to promote and sell more of your services and products.
Here are some simple ways you can use this new Instagram feature to promote your business and increase your sales.
Make your content/product easy to discover for your followers. After all, you can’t increase your sales if no-one knows your product exists! To improve your presence on Instagram and make your products discoverable, use as many relevant hashtags as possible. Using the right hashtag can boost your engagement rate and increase your product visibility. So invest time in researching the best and most relevant trending hashtags to use for your products.
Make sure to provide a seamless shopping and browsing experience to your prospects after they’ve clicked through to your website. Ideally, you want your potential customers to leave the app to complete the purchase (but there’s also no problem if they browse your site within the Instagram browser, as a sale is a sale). A clever way of making the transition from Instagram post to website seamless is to create a similar look for your Instagram account and your website’s landing page. If your landing page is very different, then there are high chances that your prospects will leave your website assuming that they have visited the wrong website.
If you are considering Instagram or adding Social Media to your marketing mix contact us for a Free Consultation.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is always evolving. Businesses are always looking for new ways to rank organically on the top of search engines. It has gone from abstract experimental concepts to a near concrete science. There were rules and the desired keyword density that would trigger an optimal search result. The problem is the contradictory goals of industry leading search engines and advertisers. Search engines filter out obvious ads in order to get corporations to pay to push revenue-producing content to the top.
This is Google’s profit model and, safe to say, it’s extremely effective. Smaller groups of entrepreneurs and marketers looked for ways to skirt Google’s pay for play system. That’s where traditional SEO was born, from a desire to push product positive or ad-revenue producing content to the top of the list, without paying Google’s premiums. As SEO writers adapted so did search filters ability to pick up subtly sponsored articles and blog posts. Today, SEO is a huge consideration when producing promo materials. However, the parameters have shifted from focusing on the search itself to learning more about the searchers.
Traditional SEO Verse the New
With traditional SEO focused more on fooling the search engine, new SEO is a realization of how people use the internet. This was the equivalent of fishing for a click. Once that goal was achieved, there was no regard for user experience or end result. At completion, the clicker often felt tricked. The content of the query was nothing more than the result of a carefully considered math equation. As Google and other engines got wise, spammy contrived SEO results would consistently drop concordantly with average user page time.
The change to a more refined SEO is all about the content of the link. SEO now focuses on the searcher and their experience with the content. By focusing on providing value for the searcher, instead of simply extracting a click, it ensures that future like-minded individuals will also enjoy this content. What arises is a focus on high-quality, informative content that people will like and share. The new desired action is by providing value to the consumer. Furthermore, by targeting a certain user of a search engine, instead of simply a few keywords, it broadens opportunities for a wide variety of results.
With traditional SEO, the goal was to find the perfect balance that exacts the keyword to attract a click. However, with new SEO, the idea is to not only provide an entertaining article on the subject but also tailor the writing towards the audience most likely to be searching for a continental result. Within this audience, there are a variety of desirable niches (think luxury, budget, young, old) to infiltrate. New SEO thinks about the audience first, and it ensures a myriad of search terms lead the right person, to the right place. After all, that was the original intent of the search engines.
Time to Start Thinking Social
New SEO has a renewed grasp for its audience and new sense of purpose, but where does social media come in? It seems that if content once again rules the space, it should speak for itself. Why do firms focused on churning out viable, reliable, and actionable articles care about Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram? The answer is complicated but the studies are decisive. A strong social media presence is essential to moving up the all-important results ladder.
Reason for Social Media with the New SEO
Raise Your Profile
Social media profiles are often one of the most returned results in any search. If you Google your own name, chances are the first result will be some sort of social media profile. That’s because these sites are linked to other reputable sites and thus, they attain both criteria Google checks when creating a results page. Google’s algorithms look for “relevance and authority” which means, the ideal result is both close to the queried term and also linked, in both directions, to other respected sites.
Essentially, social media profiles contain a lot of the information search engines try to independently verify. Furthermore, as your reach grows and other sites with heavy authority link to your social profiles, they will continue to climb the search rankings. A profile link in a reputable magazine, newspaper, blog, or other social profile can greatly increase overall exposure. Also, these profiles contain a myriad of information about you and your business, which means they will feature in an incredible amount of search terms. There’s no excuse for not having a dedicated approach to social media profiles, as they check the most important boxes in most search programs. These profiles should be carefully curated and expertly maintained using new SEO techniques to maintain a positive image, and provide value to the consumer.
Internal Social Search Engines
An overlooked fact of most social media platforms is their internal search engines. If you’re looking to get into contact with an old friend, the first place you should search is Facebook’s dedicated engine. If you’re already on Instagram and looking for new clothes or ideas for your next vacation, you will use the integrated search bar. Each platform has dedicated features that make it unique. Mastering each medium is paramount to search success. Neglecting these smaller, but important search engines is a big mistake. People on these platforms are likely to share, like, and repost content that reaches them. If you’ve embraced new SEO principles, using social media search engines can be a very effective way to distribute your content. Most important is providing value to the consumer. If they see that value, they will show their friends, and that’s how exponential growth begins. Focusing on social media search engines provides growth opportunities whereas, the giants are much harder to crack.
The Power of Influence
Social media is home to some of the most influential celebrities and websites on the planet. As we know search engines like Google take authority into account, that means if something from your social media is posted on a powerful site or blog, it will draw more attention from the engines. While the number of likes and shares don’t currently affect Google rankings, who likes and shares certainly do matter. By getting the attention of influential people and brand, you increase the chances that your social media content will move into more traditional sites. This will see both your authority and relevance skyrocket. In the 21st century, “going viral” is essentially a phenomenon when a social media post leaps off the platform, reaching a much wider audience. Use social media as a springboard and soon you may see yourself on television, gigantic media websites, and even on browser home screens. These are not freak occurrences. “Going viral” requires a dedication to your desired audience and true understanding of new SEO. It’s all about finding the right content and getting the right push. This usually comes from a social media “influencer.” Partnering with an influencer, or someone, with a huge social media following, can get your product into the public consciousness, where hopefully its merits will carry the momentum. Right now social media is a low overhead option to attract attention and eventually drive business.
Bias of the Status Quo
Google does not currently take the volume of likes and shares into account when amassing search results. For example, a Facebook post with 70 likes and one with 50, with identical wording, should be equal in search results. There is some debate as to whether this is true, but what remains is a focus on content and authority. Better content = more likes, shares, and outgoing links. This increases your chances of being featured on a massive website and attracting the associating attention. While Google has explicitly denied any tangible effect of high numbers of “social signals”, other search engines like Bing, Yahoo, and MSN have not. That means a more popular post may increase visibility on these platforms. Also, Google’s stance is temporary. Their algorithms and results are always changing with the whims of the consumer. Just as new SEO focuses on the intended target, Google must adapt to what’s popular with their customers. For now, they exclude in-platform popularity from consideration when generating search results. As the people of the internet become increasingly obsessed with likes, retweets, and shares, it’s reasonable to assume Google will too. However, one undeniable factor is getting your post on multiple profiles will increase your authority by triggering multiple returns across many reputable sites. With new SEO likes may not matter right now mathematically but they increase your visibility and perhaps, long-term viability.
Social media sites are a natural warehouse of content. Once posted it is readily available to the public in perpetuity. The internet has a short attention span, but a very long memory. A once popular post can become viral again, even years later, with one repost. These posts have a life of their own and that constant stream of links and backlinks doesn’t go away. That means once your profile, post, or article has gone viral it’s reach spreads roots to authority building sites that aren’t easily erased. That means every time a relevant search is queried, your profile will remain at or near the top. Building a following and going viral are difficult, but they have lasting SEO implications. Consider a piece of excellent content on a social media website like a classic old sitcom. You’ve seen it 100 times, but every time, you still laugh. You can always discuss iconic scenes with your friends. Thusly, a transcendent social media post works and continues to work for you or your client. This never truly stops as diverse groups “discover” or rediscover the post themselves. There is no expiration date for amazingly directed content. It’s just a matter of getting it on the right channel, so it can entertain forever, perhaps with a small nudge here and there.
Does this really work?
Fans of old-school SEO may be skeptical of including a dedicated social media focus in their plan. Any successful SEO program is about building links. In a traditional scheme, your link is promoted by either paying a search engine to promote your content, heavily gaming the relevance portion of the algorithm, or paying outside sites to link to your content. That, however, will not build quality links to sites with the authority the Google’s algorithm constantly craves. By taking a new SEO approach you are not paying for a temporary trick that will be erased by the next software update. Google wants to provide their customers value. The value, in this case, is high-quality content, supported by sites with large followings, and reaching out to all sorts of people. This type of lasting impression called “content marketing”, ensures your desired result gets to the top and stays there. By investing in quality content the difference to giant search engines is evident.
Social media gives you an opportunity to compete. With social media profiles, you have an easily linkable, highly exposed, personal website that is already recognized by Google as a site of authority. By producing high-quality, authoritative, audience-centric content you are allowing consumers to organically discover material they already like. While social media impressions don’t currently increase Google visibility, they increase the volume of people talking about your product. This allows you to build a system of links and hopefully, reach an influencer. This link network lasts forever. As your linked roots grow, the authority will slowly transfer to the domain of your social media profiles. These will be the first results when people search in your specific niche. Moving forward, you now have a dedicated platform for posting new content in the future, creating a domino effect of influence. Social media is still the Wild West of marketing. The platforms themselves are still struggling to find their footing in this volatile marketplace. Embracing new SEO, a link building philosophy, and making the most of social media can take your reach to new heights.
The days of keyword stuffing SEO are drawing to a close. The industry has moved from the certainty of mathematical precision to the vagaries of content marketing. The most essential part is no longer generating empty, trick-based clicks, but creating lasting, useful content. Consumers will feel more enlightened and less used, and thusly be more willing to share helpful information with friends. Therein lies the beauty of using social media to build a link network. The network is, somewhat ironically already built for you. Everyone has their circle of friends and family. Unlike, traditional SEO, where the goal is to reach everyone searching for a certain term, content centered social media-based marketing, means you only have to reach one person. If someone likes, shares, or reposts your content there is a chance that like-minded others will do the same. The difficult part is building this following and keeping them active. However, a short-term media push will create an everlasting reputation and link network that will never stop paying dividends.
In essence, social media is the new king of marketing. Whether or not huge firms will admit it is a different story. In terms of moving up search results, being featured in widely seen blogs/sites, and inexpensively receiving TV airtime, nothing can compete with social media. It has become the great equalizer as consumers continue to look for personally targeted content and almost eerily specific messages. Reaching possible customers starts with hitting them where they live, and that, nowadays, is social media. The goal is simple. By harnessing the power of social media, reaching and distributing your message is easier, cheaper and more efficient than ever. Simply find your audience, and watch them do the work for you.
Social media is an essential part of your overall online branding and marketing as it is a popular media to syndicate your message. Your message has the potential to be seen by many users if properly developed. Facebook alone has over one billion users and should always be considered when marketing your brand. Social media optimization can also create more traffic movement to your website and increase your organic rankings on search engines. With the right strategies, social media is an important factor to your overall marketing strategy. Listed below are key strategies and best practices to use.
Social Media Monitoring
In order to understand the needs of social media users and respond to them accordingly, it is advisable to monitor social media pages. You should find out what people are talking about, what they are interested in and what social media users do not like in order to tweak the content on your posts for better feedback. There are various monitoring tools available online that you can use to listen to social media. Listening is the key to learning and once you learn, it becomes extremely easy to action this knowledge to promote your brand.
Make Your Social Media Posts Stand Out
In order to get more attention from social media users, you need to make sure each of your posts is a hit. You can get more attention and exposure on your social media posts using images, videos, gifs, and hashtags. Make sure the posts are short and concise to make sure everybody reads your posts and gets the message. You have probably come across the “too long, didn’t read” meme doing rounds on social media showing that internet users really don’t have the attention span for very long posts.
Build A Proper Detailed Profile
Social media profiles are a crucial part of branding your company. Most social media encourage creating a bio, putting up a profile picture and a cover or background picture. Ensure that the pictures you use to create your profile are a true and interested representation of your brand. Make sure you use your logo, and in your bio, include contact information as well. Using the company logo creates a lasting impression on the mind of your potential customer. Some social media users may not navigate to your website therefore including contact information in your social media bio makes it easy for them to contact you through email or a phone call.
Build Your Social Media Networks
Do not wait for the people to come to you; you need to connect with as many people as possible on social media. It is also important to make a strong connection. Only a fraction of social media users meet your demographic characteristics and these are the individuals you need to connect with. You can use the hashtags on social media pages to find individuals with shared interests and connect with them. You can also include a call to action buttons in your social media pages encouraging people to like and share your posts or visit our website to learn more.
Connect With Social Media Users
Building a network is one thing while connecting with users is another. People value brands that give their customers attention and value customer input. Therefore, you should not simply share posts on social media and wait for the traffic to start rolling in. You should respond to comments and feedback in the social media posts. Feel free to share positive feedback that you receive because testimonials from satisfied customers do have an impact in increasing the popularity of your brand. You should also thank individual customers who comment or give criticism through social media pages.
Choose The Right Social Network For Your Brand Image
Social networks have different characteristics, some are more business oriented (LinkedIn), some encourage craft (Pinterest, Instagram), some generate discussions (Twitter), while some are all about building a social life and social networks (Facebook). Therefore, your approach towards these different social networks should be customized. Make sure you choose the social network that best supports your brand image and use it accordingly. Facebook has a heterogeneous base and that is why it is considered the best social network for promoting any brand.
Create Valuable and Share-Worthy Content
You can only strengthen your brand reputation when you create quality useful content that your social media networks will be willing to share. You need to be sure of how your audience will respond to the content, and this takes us back to the first point of social media monitoring. You can use interesting content such as memes, tutorial videos, instructional pictures and short stories or descriptions to share more about your brand.
Use Existing Influences
If you are introducing a new brand into the market, it becomes extremely difficult to be noticed, as you would like, even when you have killer social media marketing strategies. It may take the input of influencers to get people talking about your product. You can contact social media influencers for reviews and mentions in order to get the attention you need. Choose niche specific influencers to ensure that your brand is being voiced to the right people.
You can also use social campaigns to promote your brand. Use valuable incentives that will encourage social media users to participate in the campaigns. You can create contests for the most number of likes, shares or the best picture showing the customer using your brand. The rewarded customers will automatically be converted into social media brand ambassadors for your products and services.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization makes up brand promotion across different platforms on the internet and not just social media. Search engines today incorporate social media signals into ranking websites in search results. Search engines will use Facebook likes and retweets to rank pages on internet searches. Social media profiles are also ranked among search results and your social media profile may appear on the same page as your website in a Google search. Therefore, you should ensure your social media pages are always up to date with a lot of buzz around them.
Social media platforms are also search engines in a way. People will use the search boxes on social media pages to find information about specific keywords. Therefore, you should ensure that you optimize the content on your social media pages with high conversion keywords.
People looking for your companies information look at your website as well as your information on Facebook, Twitter, and other social sites. Your company and its brand image on social media is every bit as important as your business website and is essential to the success of your business. Make sure your business is taking advantage of social media and if you are looking for to optimize your social media or need someone to manage social media Digital Marketology is always here to help. You can visit all our social media services by clicking here.
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest and now Snapchat! Each month a new social media platform is born and the landscape changes yet again.
Most business owners see a benefit in having an active social media strategy. However, implementing that strategy is easier said than done. It takes time to learn the platforms (and keep up with the constant changes), and to manage a social networking site effectively should take a min of 30 mins a day (per site). So, if you are managing Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, then you are already spending 1.5hrs a day on social media, without even looking at other platforms, blogging and email marketing.
If you want to meet your social media goals and objectives, then you will need to employ someone who has a wealth of experience in the online marketing sphere. They will need to invest time each day into the learning process, not just the “doing”. Whether you are outsourcing your social media, or you have a dedicated member of the team, then please ensure that they are investing time in learning and discovering new things. For example, we produce a weekly email, along with an educational video every week to our staff with “what is new in social media”. It is amazing how much you will miss if you do not keep up with the latest developments in the industry.
A social media agency will have seen the demise of MySpace and the rise of Instagram. They would have enjoyed the reach of Facebook a few years ago and now they know how to manipulate the algorithm and how to create Facebook adverts to achieve excellent results. An agency will have proven strategies and procedures that work.
An experienced consultant will know how many posts to send at optimised times, the best practice for the different platforms, and the best places to find content. They also have the flexibility to change strategies and processes as and when needed. For example, we have been implementing a strategy for blogging and guest blogging for the last three years. However, with recent Google changes, we have now changed.
Outsourcing your social media means that the job gets done, no matter what! If your account manager is sick or on holiday, then the agency will brief an alternative account manager to look after your account. This process should be seamless and you will not even notice the difference. We all know that the key to success online comes down to consistency. There is nothing worse than looking at a blog on a website and the last post was in 2014, or the last tweet was a month ago. Employing an agency keeps the content flowing, and in turn, this increases your search results on Google.
How much would it cost a business owner to employ a marketing consultant nowadays? Perhaps someone who has a marketing or digital media degree and has a good level of knowledge? £25k – £30k per annum? There are, of course, lots of benefits to having the right person internally managing your online marketing. However, there are so many aspects to hiring the right person that getting it wrong is very risky business. How do you know that they will be good at managing a Social Media campaign?
In all honesty, if you have the capacity, and you can dedicate someone internally, then this will always be your most effective scenario (if you have the right person). But what sort of person are you looking for? [Julia, puts on her recruitment hat!].
Ideally, you want someone who can spell, has good grammar, and understands the different languages and functionality of the platforms (ie: do they know about retweets, hashtags etc) – you can test your potential new recruit with these social media skills tests here. This person needs to be commercially aware (do they know about your industry and the business?). It’s great to have a marketing graduate, for example, but I find it is much more effective to have someone who actually understands the lingo and terminology of the industry that they will be producing content for, rather than understanding how social media works (social media can be taught afterward. You need someone who is a good communicator internally as they need to be able to ask questions and find out what is happening in the business. Are they confident enough to take photos of visitors, grab a video of that new machine that was just installed, or get everyone to sing happy birthday to a team member, whilst taking a Twitter Vine. This person needs to be confident.
If you do decide to outsource social media management, not only are you guaranteed a professional who knows the ins and outs of the industry, but it also costs a lot less than a full-time salary. Additionally, this professional will be supported by a whole team, so for less money, you get much more. To find out our costs for social media management.
Alternatively, you may want to consider outsourcing your social media to an established agency (we know a good one!).
Creating content online for your social media, email marketing, or blogs needs to reflect your brand and your company voice. Please be aware that an internal content creator may have tendencies to speak in company jargon or industry lingo which may not be the best approach. When writing online, we strongly advise using customer-focused language.
Agencies often implement a sign-off system to avoid such errors whether they be grammatical errors or off-message posts that do more harm than good. In most cases, the client of the company has full control.
Should you outsource your social media or recruit internally?
There is no right or wrong answer for this. We have seen many companies flourish when they have an internal person working the accounts, and they excel when the CEO or Managing Director has time to put into their own social media channels. They key is to ensure that you have someone that is passionate about the industry, is good at research, and has the intuition to smell a story when one crops up.
If you do decide to outsource, please remember that it is a partnership. You will be working alongside the agency to ensure that you are on track with your goals and objectives for the business. It is certainly not a “set it and forget it” situation. If you have the mindset of “I don’t need to worry as the agency is looking after my social media” – then you are doomed from the outset.