Have you ever told someone that you run a business? What is the most likely question following this conversation, Are you on social media? And, the moment you answer YES, there’s another billion dollar question rolling your way, How do you manage your business?
Fortunately (or unfortunately), social media marketing isn’t the same for all businesses. There’s planning, experimentation and a lot of strategy that goes into building a strategy that achieves your marketing goals.
Let us take a quick tour to see how you can leverage your social media audience to build your business and brand.
1. Choose your Social Platforms Wisely
With social audiences being dictated by a multitude of avenues, it is impossible to stay connected with all users, at all times, across all networks around the clock. Remedy? Be selective. Study your business requirements and audience type to target audience through right avenues.
[Tweet “To succeed on social media, you have to be selective with who you follow and engage with”]
Example, a fashion designer can grow rapidly on Instagram or Pinterest than on Twitter. Similarly, a local business can gather more audience through Facebook than through Snapchat.
Take away: Do not thin your presence over all social networks, stay focusedon?3-4 social networks instead of scattering over many. Build an authentic profile with all relevant details and references. And, keep your profile updated around the clock.
2. Grow a Valuable Audience
After setting up your profile on the social network(s) of choice, the next step is to build a valuable audience that can generate leads and revenue. Don’t get rat trapped into the bait of numbers. Of course, numbers are impressive, but at the end it is about meaningful audience- one that will be interested in buying your product. In fact, 67% of Twitter users are more likely to buy brands that they “follow” ?, as quoted by Hubspot. You can make use of third-party applications to connect with right audience through effective search, streamlined resources.
Take away: If you have serious business plans, random follow/unfollow is waste of a time. Target your to-be customers using right growth tools at hand, and at same time keep monitoring it effectively.
3. Engage?them with Good Content
The way you create content can either strengthen or weaken your business. With the flood of information floating across different channels, it is pretty easy to get drowned in noise. Therefore, write about unique ideas that sell. Bring across genuine thoughts, growth techniques and solutions on your?service platter. Educate, entertain and be informative – that is the mantra to keep you going. And, a touch of humornever hurts.
[Tweet “Social Media Tip: Engage your audience with content that educates and entertains”]
Take away: Content is your virtual identity on social media. Bring variation to what you post. Make use of infographics to generate interest. Also, don’t copy-paste similar content across different channels. Edit and alter it as per channel requirement. Research shows, words like Retweet, RT (on Twitter) can boost audience engagement by 23%.
4. Do not Sell
Shocked? Because as a business owner, you were always told to sell. Not any more. Try tweet a Sale Board? or post a Buy-Me? image on Instagram. You are bound to be unfollowed, or blocked right away. The reality of social media is that nobody wants to buy a product. Nobody is interested in promoting your business. As an audience, people seek life changers.
Therefore, don’t tell them what your product deals with, tell them how it can transform their life experience.
Take away: In-your-face advertisement is offensive. Therefore trade ideas, share experiences, narrate stories that encircle your business/brand. At the same time, be genuine and subtle. Larger than life promises are a big disappointment. Check out how Nike sells ideas much before they sell shoes.
5. Warm up your Conversation
Social media has revolutionized networking and communication, but at the same time it has lost real connections. The world of business on social front seems mechanized. Therefore, humanize your business to connect with your customers. Build rapport with your audience audience. Keep them in loop about your progress, your work status, off the schedule fun through social media. Be real. Your audience will chose the brand that is more humanizing and vocal about their business.
[Tweet “Don’t be afraid to be yourself — it’s what your customers want from your brand”]
Take away: Be interactive as well as receptive, like a next-to-door buddy for them. Make them believe in the quality of your service. You are after all working for improving their life, isn’t it? Also, never ignore an email or a message. Avoid automated replies, unless you have a robot working at your support desk.
6. Spread across your Social Schedule
You might have heard this in high school- Time is Money. Right? Overlay this quote with the mind boggling pace of social media and it becomes even more important. Spending time across social media is a great idea- you should definitely do that. But how much time should you spend, is the next question. Don’t let the whirl of social media spin you around. Prioritize and manage your time, or you?will become a victim to social noise.
Take away: Set a specific time for posting, reviewing content and communicating across with your audience such that it does not overshadow your routine tasks. Discover your ?sweet-spot? across different channels by experimenting with different post timings. You can also queue or auto-schedule your posts using various scheduling apps in order to save time and hassles of posting at odd hours.
7. Use Data Insights
Profile- Check, Content- check, Post- check, Audience- Check, Growth-?
If that is the case, stop right away. Because, working directionless is as good as not working at all. Every business, no matter to what scale it spans, must have an analytical report to back upon. Efforts should always be measurable. And, make sure you are not measuring it in the beam balance of likes, favorites or retweets.
Take away: Record your growth pattern. Test out different schedules, measure audience behavior. Use Google Analytics for studying traffic through sources and conversion rate. Also, anticipate your growth through the market of content.
[Tweet “Good social media strategy requires focus, patience and authenticity”]
Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor can social value be created for businesses and entrepreneurs. It requires not only a well planned out strategy, but also a consistent effort on effective implementation, and above all patience. Now, whether the plan is to amplify your brand’s outreach or generate revenue leads, the key is to have an effective strategy followed by a powerful execution.
So, go ahead and start building a healthy and proactive audience, such that they mature as your happy customers tomorrow.