Social media marketing requires both strategy and creativity.
While it may seem overwhelming, its importance cannot be overstated. It’s so important that 97% of marketers are using social media and 78% of salespeople outsell their peers by using social media for their business.
Plus, its benefits extend far beyond increasing sales
However, not all businesses are aware of the benefits of social media marketing. In fact, 50% of small businesses aren’t using social media to promote their business. That’s an alarming number. Even more concerning is that an additional 25% don’t plan to use social media in the future either.
Clearly, there is a disconnect between those who are seeing the benefits of social media and those struggling to get started.
If the latter sounds like you, keep reading. You’re about to learn how social media marketing can help build your business. Some of the benefits you’ll learn about include:
Growing your brand awareness: Social media marketing will make it easy to spread the word about your products and mission.
Increasing your traffic: Using social media and linking it to your website will increase your traffic tremendously.
Promoting your products and services: This is ultimately why you invest in marketing, right?
Managing Your Social Media On One Marketing Management Platform
When your brand is ready to get started with social media, manage everything on one marketing management platform with CoSchedule. It empowers teams to:
Schedule and automate single posts and complete cross-channel campaigns on every network.
Manage social media workflows and team communication.
Measure performance with robust social analytics.
Plus, you can manage all your other marketing projects and campaigns on the same platform, too.
Using Social Media To Grow Your Brand Awareness
1. Create Brand Recognition
Gaining brand recognition is one of any business’ most important marketing goals. That’s because consumers want to buy brands they recognize. Thankfully, social media allows for easy and effective brand building.
Social media has a benefit over traditional media because it can get your brand in front of people much more quickly and easily. Furthermore, it gets your audience looking at your brand even when they aren’t thinking about your brand or product.
Tip: Pay attention to your profile and cover photos. A great way to create brand recognition is to place your logo often yet strategically. You want to make sure that it’s not overwhelming or distracting.
Make sure the visual elements of your brand are well represented.
Take a look at Nike’s Twitter page. Nike keeps their Twitter profile neat and clean. They place their recognizable logo on both their profile image and cover photo without being overbearing.
The cover photo is especially effective because it connects the Nike logo to the idea of running.
2. Generate A Conversation Around Your Brand
A strong social media marketing strategy will generate conversation about your brand, products, and partners.
Take this example from PlayStation. A simple post saying congratulations to Naughty Dog (the company behind the new video game Uncharted 4) for its success generated feedback on the game.
Generate conversation: Social media facilitates genuine conversation about your brand.
In doing so, they received a great amount of feedback about their product. They also got people talking. Fans were having genuine conversations, all facilitated by social media.
Tip: Engage with your audience when they comment on your social media messages. Make sure they feel that there is a person behind the brand.Ensuring that they don’t feel like they’re talking to a robot will give them a better perception of your company and make them feel more like a valued customer.
Focus on sharing content that naturally creates conversation. Some of those ways are to:
Give shout-outs to other companies you network and work with.
Solicit feedback about your products.
Ask open ended questions, then let the audience reply to get them actively involved.
3. Learn How To Connect With Your Audience Through Social Listening
Social listening is the act of monitoring social conversations around certain topics. It helps you understand what’s important to your audience and identify trends your target audience is following.
You’ll learn about what they’re struggling with, which can help you create content addressing those pain points.
You can also identify the tone and language that your target audience uses.
Take a look at Burger King on Twitter. They use the same slang that the younger audience on Twitter uses to represent themselves in a comedic fashion. If you’re unsure how to match the tone and style of your audience, social listening can help.
Tip: Make it a part of your daily routine to do some social listening and see what people are saying in your industry. If you want to take your social listening to the next level, check out Mention (the same social listening tool used by the CoSchedule team).
4. Tell Your Brand’s Story
Using social media is a great way to share your brand’s mission and share stories. Effective stories can have a great impact on your brand’s image. They can be simple or extensive depending on what you think will be most effective.
Effective stories can have a great impact on your brand’s image.
Take this Starbucks post for example. It simply tells the story of someone getting a job at a hiring fair, and it effectively helped their public image. It has only one image, but the story is impactful and clear.
Tip: Share stories of people who use your product or service. If they give you great feedback, share it! It’ll spread the message that your product is effective enough for someone to give you positive feedback.
5. Gather Data From Audience Research To Improve
Audience research is similar to social listening. It searches the keywords your audience will be using, but it’s more focused on your specific product. You can use social media to gather this information.
Tip: Both Facebook and Twitter allow you to view the reach and the insights of all your posts.
To view the insights on your Facebook page, simply go to the page that you are the admin of and they will be next to your cover photo. Twitter will have an option to view the insights of every tweet you post at the bottom of each tweet.
6. Provide Exceptional Customer Service That Keeps Your Followers Happy
Customers now expect companies to handle their requests through social media.
A strong investment in customer service can build meaningful relationships between your company and your customers. And with social media, the challenge of customer service remains as demanding as it had before.
Social media allows for immediate interaction and customer feedback. Businesses can also respond to their customers right away. With nearly half of U.S. customers using social media to ask questions about products or services, having a social media customer service strategy is extremely important.
Take this example with HuHot, a popular Mongolian grill chain restaurant in the Upper Midwest (where CoSchedule’s offices are located). A customer inquired about a time-sensitive situation, and the company answered her question within hours:
Tip: Assuming that you have separate teams for social media and customer service, it’s important to maintain a strong line of communication between the two. That way, your teams don’t get tangled up when providing customer service through social media.
7. Build Customer Loyalty
What could possibly be better than building brand loyalty for free?
Customers follow and interact with the brands they enjoy. But what’s interesting is that 53% of customers who follow your business are likely to be loyal to your business specifically.
It’s an obvious direct correlation: If customers follow you, they are more likely to choose you versus your competition. Furthermore, if they’re loyal customers, they’ll increase your traffic.
Tip: Be sure to keep your loyal audience engaged and happy. Here are a few ideas:
Offer promo codes for discounts through social media to your followers (while remaining mindful of Facebook’s promotional content guidelines).
Ask open-ended questions that allow your audience to reply.
Give away inexpensive things such as stickers, patches, shirts, sunglasses, lanyards, hats, and Koozies that will make a long-lasting impression.
Use Social Media To Increase Your Traffic
8. Direct Referral Traffic To Your Site Or Blog
Social media marketing can assist in sending customers directly to your site.
It’s unlikely that all of your traffic will come through search engines. Social media channels allow for more diverse inbound traffic streams.
Social Networks Are Great For Getting Traffic to Your Site
Though social networks are great for getting traffic to your site, you need to consider not only what to post but how often to post. You don’t want to become that overbearing marketer, or you’ll turn off your customers.
It’s good to follow a set schedule for posting your content (link to one of our blog posts). This will help you ensure that your content is not only posted at a time that is most effective, it will also give you time to edit your content to help you with your SEO.
Tip: Use bit.ly to shorten your links and place them within your posts and profiles. The shortened links will save space and not look overbearing to the audience. (You can do this with the bit.ly integration in your CoSchedule social media calendar.)
9. Social Media Can Assist With Link Building
Social media can have an indirect impact on SEO.
For example, let’s say that you get 1,000 shares on a blog post because it contains strong content. Some of your followers who see your post may write similar content and link back to your original post as a source. Search engines will then pick up on the fact that your content has linked back to a good amount and (hopefully) rank your post higher than your competition.
Google and Bing also display tweets in search results. This feature is more relevant for trending topics.
Tip: Using a social media scheduling tool like CoSchedule can help you plan your social media posts so your content can be found and be linked to.
10. It’s (Mostly) FREE
Thats right, (mostly) free.
It’s free to create social media profiles and post organic content. For some, that may be enough, and the quality of the content may promote the content on its own. However, if you’d like to go the extra mile and promote it further, paying for promotion will help increase exposure.
You can promote your business on Facebook for any budget. Facebook also automatically directs your ad toward users that are interested in what you’re advertising. Twitter works the same way.
You have to set up a campaign, and they’ll work with your budget. That means you’ll have a huge ROI and you’ll use your marketing budget in an effective way.
How customers get from social media ad to purchase.
Tip: Don’t write organic content that sounds like an ad. It’ll make your posts look like spam. If it sounds like an ad or includes a transactional call to action (ex: Buy Now, 30% Off, Use This Coupon Code), you should pay for it.Many marketers look at social media as a way to blast free advertising, and social media platforms have caught on to that idea and are restricting the reach for unpaid-for ads. By all means, if you want to advertise on social media, you should. But make sure you pay for it so that it looks professional and you get a good reach.