If your business is not utilizing at least one social media platform for your marketing, you may have been hiding under a rock. Social media’s reach in the business world is vast and can be a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal. But how do you know if your strategy will get you the most bang for your buck?
Industry experts and bloggers vary on the top tips to make your marketing strategy successful, but some are mentioned across the various blogs. We will look at some of the more popular ways you can invest your time and energy when planning and implementing a social media strategy.
It’s about goals!
Zig Ziglar is credited with the statement “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time.” This is true about your marketing strategy.
Setting goals is a critical first step that will go a long way in providing the focus of your social media campaigns. As you begin to identify your goals, be sure they are:
- specific and measurable – goals that are too broad or vague are hard to reach and even harder to measure.
- relevant to your business – increasing sales in cars and trucks is great, but not for an IT company.
- appropriately rigorous, yet attainable – setting a goal that is too easily reached is a waste of resources and the gains for your business are probably not of great value. Setting the bar too high is equally problematic and can be frustrating and demoralizing for staff at all levels. However, setting a goal that is rigorous yet attainable is in the sweet spot that will help build your brand and your business.
- manageable – three to five solid goals are a good starting point. Be careful not to set too many as that will dilute your efforts and you may not meet any of them as a result.
But your audience matters too!
Knowing your audience, inside and out, top to bottom is another crucial step in a successful marketing strategy. Some things to think about as you analyze your target audience include:
- core goals and values
- where are they getting their information
- what are the targeted demographics (gender, age, ethnicity, geographical location, education level, occupation, etc.)
- what are their challenges, pain points, purchase power
Ultimately, the content you put out, messaging, and products and services you are promoting must be tailored to the target audience or it will be lost in cyberworld and so will their business!
Don’t forget to choose your platforms with purpose.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in selecting social media platforms is diversifying your efforts too broadly. It’s the age-old notion of spreading yourself too thin, watering down your message, stretching your content writers too thin or off track, and your plan goes out the window.
Your goals and audience should enter the decisions about which social media platforms you will use. For example, Facebook is no doubt a mega-star in the social media world, as are Instagram and Snapchat. However, LinkedIn has a significant presence in the business arena. Some things to think about:
- Who would be in the market for your business’s products or services and where they are getting their information?
- Does the social media platform cater to my customer avatar’s demographics or is there one that does a better job reaching my target audience?
- Where are my competitors posting?
In the end, it is far better to focus your efforts on a few sites rather than trying to reach them all and missing the mark!
Engage your audience with solid content!
Once you have established your goals, identified the key target audience, and selected your social media platforms, you are ready to start delivering content in the form of advertisements, blogs, promotions, email campaigns, etc. So having content is crucial. The platforms you have selected as well as your customer avatar will also be factors in the way you share your content. You want to make sure the content is relevant to your audience and engages them through storytelling, images, videos, and high-quality graphic presentation formats. A varied approach is helpful and will improve outcomes and reach. The content should also make be thought-provoking for your clients and not overwhelm them with things that just don’t matter. It should be current and compelling, and it should make your customers want and need your products and services.
You should also devise a clear plan for sharing your content in a timely and frequent manner to keep your brand in front of your customers in a way that will keep them coming back for me. When possible, automating your content is also helpful, as is creating a bank that you can revisit, when appropriate to do so. It’s refreshing as a consumer to be reminded of something important over time, which can affirm a purchase or compel someone to go out and make one!
Use your data to drive decisions.
Last, but definitely not least, data is a cornerstone of all stages of your social media marketing strategy’s development and implementation. Data can be particularly useful in identifying the context and executing a needs assessment as you are starting with your social media marketing plan. It can be culled to narrow your targeted audience for your marketing campaigns. Once implemented, the analysis of key data points can help you identify the strengths and weaknesses in your effort and help you to evaluate and adjust where needed. It can also be a critical need in helping identify your budget and ensure that your staffing is adequate for the tasks or if you need outside social media management. Using data in a meaningful way and ongoing basis will go a long way in helping make key decisions about your social media efforts and the success of your strategy. Once you have the data to examine overall success, the cycle starts again, with the identification of new goals, evaluation of strategies to see what to keep doing and what to stop doing, and what to do instead.
Marketing with social media can be a cost-effective strategy that will increase your customer base, generate leads, and convert leads into purchases, especially when implemented intentionally and purposefully!
If you are interested in help with your social media marketing, reach out to us at Klik Digital!