Over the years social media has become a force to be reckoned with, both for personal use and for brands. It has become a marketing tool and has given rise to the majestic social media influencer. There are brands that are thriving online and know exactly how to use it to their benefit, then there brands that (still) think that social media is a fad, while others are simply overwhelmed by all the different social media channels and how quickly they are advancing.
This blog post is for the latter two. If you’re still of the perception that social media is “just a phase” I have news for you. It’s not. We’re in the digital age and it’s time for you to get on board. As for those people who feel overwhelmed by all tech-speak, don’t worry you’re not alone and it certainly isn’t a lost cause. Here are five easy tips to get started with your social media marketing for your business or personal pages.
1. Understand Your Social Media Platforms.
A very important aspect of social media marketing is understanding each of the social media platforms and the purpose that each of them serves in the digital ecosystem. What works on Instagram or Facebook may not necessarily work on Twitter or Pinterest. It is important for brands to understand what it is that they’re trying to achieve through each platform and then creating a digital content strategy based on those key performance indicators.
Though the purpose and goals of each platform may change, it is still imperative that brands are present. Social media provides brands with easy access to their target audience. It also allows brands to stay in touch with the sentiment of the brand and the very real problems that their consumers face on a day-to-day basis. Which brings us tour next point.
2. Engage with Your Followers
Social media provides brands with an opportunity for brands to connect with their target audience. Here you can assess and analyse the real-life problems that consumers face. With the potential of providing a real, viable solution. Social media and the relevant social media tools also offer you the opportunity to assess the sentiment of your brand.
Use social media to ask questions, reply to comments and share information about your products or services. Are consumers happy with the product? Are there consumer needs that are not being met? And is there a business opportunity to grow the brand and expand the product offering? This is where you will find some of the answers to these pressing questions.
By engaging with your followers you’re building your social media presence and more importantly a relationship with your customers.
3. Make Use of Social Media Hashtags
Hashtags are an easy way to tap into relevant conversations online. Using the correct hashtag means that the social content you produce has a better chance of crossing the eye of your target audience. An important tip to remember is to check the common spelling of hashtags. It is also important to check out the content in the hashtag thread before using it.
The last thing you want, or need is for your brand to be associated with a hashtag that is off brand or does not provide any positive kickback for your brand.
You should also take the time to going out and finding users that are interested in hashtags representative of your business. View their profile, like or comment on some of their photos and follow them.
4. Leverage User Generated Content
Another great way to build your presence online is to repost and share other people’s content. For brands this is a great way to acknowledge customers, especially when they’re engaging with your products. Always remember to ask for permission and to give the person credit either in the post copy or as a tag.
Facebook and Twitter allow for easy sharing and retweeting of content. Instagram however, relies on third party apps since it does not have native abilities to share posts – except through Instagram Stories. And even then, with limitations.
5. Use Facebook and Instagram Stories
If you’re running a carefully curated Instagram timeline then Instagram Stories is the place where you should be posting your everyday content. Instagram received a lot of backlash when it first announced this feature – an almost complete rip-off of Snapchat. But over time, the “new” functionality has paid off and Instagram has exceeded in expanding its user base while Snapchat took a knock to its daily active users.
“Insta stories” can be used to share spontaneous moments and special behind the scenes glimpses into the day-to-day activities of your brand without interrupting your well curated feed. Though Facebook and Instagram stories offers you more freedom, it is important to:
- Keep your target audience in mind.
- Remain on brand and
- Be consistent in your messaging.
These are just five very simple tips to help you build your presence online using social media. Contact me to share your thoughts. Do you have any social media tips or tricks that you use? Let me know in the comments section below.