The influence of social media platforms over the last decade has been monumental. Social media of some form is something that the average person interacts with on a daily basis. People spend a significant amount of their free time engaging with other people and brands on today’s most popular social media platforms. So, what does this mean for businesses and how should this play into their marketing strategy?
Some sort of social media presence is expected for today’s businesses. It allows you to market your products or services, engage with your target audiences and expand your brand's reach. Just like with everything we do there are right and wrong ways to go about things. Today we are going to talk about a few social media do’s and don’ts that you should keep in mind as you are formulating your marketing strategy:
Inactivity is the Kiss of Death
Go you! You set up a couple business profiles on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. You even uploaded your logo and filled in a few business details to let people know where to find you. That’s great, but is just the beginning. If you don’t set a plan in place to stay active with your new content posting and to engage with the people that engage with your business people will start to doubt your business and question if it is even open. Being non-responsive will annoy and alienate people from your brand. How can they trust the product or service they can expect from your company if that is the impression they are getting? Do you even care? It is a feat just to get people to find out about your brand. Don’t turn people away to your competition by not taking your social media seriously. With social media, and most things, the more you are willing to put into it the more you are going to get back from it.
We have learned from our experience that social media freaks people out. They don’t know how to create graphics like they want to put out there. They are not sure that the copy they would generate would resonate with their target audience. They are generally uncertain about what to do. If you feel like this, this is where an experience professional can come in. We meet with clients to get a flavor for their brand and it’s vibe and create monthly marketing schedules that ensure consistent, on-brand content is going out and also perform the regular engagement on our customers behalf (when requested).
Don’t Get Carried Away
It is better to be active on a few platforms than to try to do too much. There are certain platforms that lend themselves better to certain types of businesses. Your buyer personas may use certain social media networks more often than others. There are always platforms that are more popular at certain times than others. Think about this and choose wisely before throwing up business profiles on too many social platforms.
Most of our clients are on Facebook and Instagram. They also usually have a presence on LinkedIn. For certain industries, there are more industry specific platforms that make sense. If you are a fashion brand you might think about connecting with your audience on a site like SSense (formerly Polyvore). Sell some sort of cooking, craft or travel related product or service? Pinterest might be a good way to engage with your target consumer if this is the case. Houzz is a great platform for those in a remodeling or repair-based field.
Not sure what platforms make sense for your audience? We can help.
Stay True to Your Brand
Not to beat a dead horse, but consistent, on-brand, relevant content is key. This still remains true for your social media postings. People are not likely to purchase from you or reach out to learn more after the first interaction they have with your brand. Keeping consistent with the look, tone and messaging of your content will start to build familiarity with your brand and brand image. With repeat and consistent exposure, you build brand recognition and better your chances of them recognizing that content is related to you at a quick glance.
When you have taken the time, or invested the money to develop a brand identity for your website, print materials, packaging, etc., don’t drop the ball when it comes to carrying out that same look and feel on your social media platforms.
Do Your Diligence
Doing your diligence as it relates to social media is multi-faceted. As mentioned previously, it is important to consider what platforms make most sense for your industry and target audience. Doing your diligence can also extend further into looking into your competition. What are they doing well and not so well? What about your favorite brands? Even if they are not related to your product or service you can probably learn something from the type and frequency of their content or the community engagement they are fostering. What other social media brands are your customers engaging with? Is there something you can learn from what they are doing that peaked your customer’s interest?
It is also important to learn best-practices for each platform you are going to choose to have a presence on. Each social media platform has it’s differences, best practices and expected means of engagement. Not operating within those guidelines in not doing you any favors and risks alienating your audience. There also might be time and money you are leaving on the table. If you don’t take the time to research relevant and effective hashtags, for example, you are limiting your potential reach.
We know! There is a lot to execute and think about when starting, running and growing a business. Don’t want to think about social media? Trust a team of experts to cultivate a social media strategy that represents your brand and engages with your audience. Let’s connect!