The rate at which businesses go up because of social media!! I possibly can’t imagine how other companies did it in the no-internet age. I’m trying to keep it as professional as possible but I just can’t help saying it must have been the ghetto back in the no-internet days. Our business oriented grandparents and great grandparents must have really been gangster to keep it going with no Instagram or Twitter to advertise their products from. Mad respect to them from some among us who would never handle half of what they did!
Fact; social media has come to stay. The sooner you realize that, the better. Actually scratch; that the sooner you realize how powerful a tool social media is in digital marketing, the better. Hal Stokes, founder and managing director of Happiour, put it best when he said “Social media is one area of business where you don’t need to outspend your competitors in order to beat them.” Accurate as heck because social media offers you the most cost-effective way to attain success in any business especially through maximization of conversion.
All you need to know is what to take advantage of and how so let yourself be guided.
As cliché as this sounds, it’s important because how will you know what you want to achieve, how far you’ve gone, what challenges you’ve faced and so on if you don’t sit down and decide what your goals are? Yes Sir/Madam I am speaking to you! Aside from engaging your community it’s also important to decide how you’re effectively going to do that. Now my advice is that you put on your big boy/big girl pants, set goals for a social media campaign and build a strategy that you believe will help you reach that goal.
Sabrina Medellin has a great suggestion when she states “…it’s important to take a step back and decide what the primary goal should be for your social media campaigns. It’s tempting to choose all four factors from the list below, but that’s a little ambitious. A safer approach is to pick one that specifically meets your business needs:
There are so many different kinds of people on this major network we call the internet. People from different generations and times all exist on the internet for different various reasons. As a person that intends to use social media marketing, it’s your role to know who to reach out to because communicating to the wrong people is not pleasant for both parties mostly because it’s time wasting for all involved and it doesn’t yield any desired results, especially for a business owner.
Identify your customers; know who they are, where you can find them and what their interests are. To make it easier for yourself, you can break down the data search by finding out their ages, occupations, genders, needs and interests plus education among other things. This makes communication with your target market much easier because you have a general idea of their identity and you’ll know how to communicate with each one.
Just a friendly reminder (perhaps a warning as well) that advertising using social media can and will get overwhelming at some point for anyone that indulges in it. An addendum to this though is that if you needed a sign to take the risk of social media marketing, this is it. This is the sign. Take the risk because for all you know it could change your life significantly for the better.
Now back to the point of choosing your social channels for effective social media marketing; know what social media platform is good for what. Sabrina Medellin put it right when she said “Keep in mind that each platform serves a different purpose and caters to a different audience.”
Don’t forget to also put into consideration your customers’ most popular media platforms so as to easily reach them. Very effective channels to start with are Facebook and Instagram; Facebook is recommended because it’s reputed to help small start-up and local businesses grow and do well whereas Instagram is a well-known visual social platform that has over 500 million users on a daily. Instagram also offers a wide array of options that are specifically for benefitting businesses. You’d be damned if you didn’t choose to take advantage of these.
Another good thing about social media is there are a number of platforms which you could choose from what works best for you; there’s Twitter that offers a business-to-business and business-to-consumer audience and don’t even dare forget LinkedIn which is literally the hub for professionals in any business imaginable.
There’s that saying that goes “A wise person learns from his mistakes, an even wiser person learns from the mistakes of others”; pardon me for not being accurate with the quote but it’s something along those lines. Be of the wiser and learn from your opponent’s mistake! Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of your contenders so that you know what to do and what not to do to achieve great results. Figure out what their go-to social campaigns are and how well they’ve done with them and how they engage their communities and make sure to emulate that if it’s high yielding.
This has four sub steps to follow:
Obviously all these have detail to them. Coming up with a plan requires you to make extensive research on your customers and competitors; identify what campaigns have captivated your customers. It also includes the basics of acknowledging the resources that you have and those you’ll need and definitely the overall budget.
Establishing one’s goals certainly needs one to set a target for an upcoming campaign; for example, one’s aim may be to increase sales, expand brand awareness and get more customers. Once you’ve defined your goals, know what to do to achieve them.
Promoting your campaign is where your expertise with social media is called for; posting on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and what not. Sometimes that won’t be enough to promote a campaign though. You may have to go the extra mile, for example, getting in touch with an influencer to promote a campaign for you can increase sales.
Lastly evaluating your success is where you see the good in setting goals at the very start because after the campaign, you can collect the previous data of the goals you set and calculate your performance against them. This, by far, makes it so much easier to know where you could’ve gone wrong, what you did well and what you should do for your next social media campaign.
I’ve said too much already so I’ll end with this: a word to a wise…
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