Today social media marketing has become a force to be reckoned with and a rewarding way for businesses of all shapes sizes to reach potential customers and clients. Businesses today recognise the value in interacting with their social media profiles, well known platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn are powerful tools to businesses and aren’t to be overlooked. Marketing correctly through social media can bring tremendous rewards to your business no matter what the size or industry. Opportunities to reach out, engage and strengthen your brand awareness can all be achieved with a sustainable marketing strategy that will bring in new leads and sales to your business.

Social media marketing in a nutshell is a kind of marketing that entails creating and sharing your content through social media in an attempt to reach your business/ marketing goals. Social media marketing involves sharing content creation, posting text and image updates, multimedia videos, amongst other tools that drive audience interaction.

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Social Media and Marketing: Your Action Plan

Without a goal it is impossible to create a plan, therefore when conducting out a marketing pan it is important to initiate a strategy that encompasses your businesses goals and beliefs. Failing to draw up a plan will ultimately leave you feeling lost and frustrated without any real direction to head towards.

We encourage you to start with some questions that will highlight a goal to move towards.

  • What do you want to achieve with social media marketing?
  • What’s your target audience?
  • What is your target audience’s behaviour like online? This would indicate online groups that retain common interests amongst its users.
  • What’s your message to users actively engaged with social media?

Dependant on the industry your business is in will indicate preferences to which social media avenues to take. For example, shopping sites (e-commerce sites) will benefit from the wide range of imagery and multimedia options that comes with Instagram and Facebook as a favourable route to uptake. Here LinkedIn would serve more as the information about the business, as opposed to an avenue to recruit new custom.

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Meet Your Marketing Goals with Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing can help your business in numerous of ways:

  • Increase website traffic
  • Creating a brand identity
  • Building rapport/engaging with customers
  • Raise your brand awareness

To achieve these goals, it is important to develop a strategy that is relatively easy to implement with your existing business. In order to do so it is paramount that certain measures are taken in order to stand the highest chance of succeeding online.

Social Media Content Planning — Building this plan is a key component to your marketing success. Key areas to focus on here are brainstorming keywords in your industry in order to develop some content ideas that will be of interest to your target audience. Having a look at your competition is also a learning curve that you will want to take notes from. You will be able to identify areas that you can incorporate as well as highlight certain areas that you believe are weak within the competition that you will be able to exploit and develop a possible niche in your industry.

Creating Consistent and Sustainable Social Content — Social media marketing works best when you are able to firstly draw up a plan that is manageable and sustainable. It is common for businesses to set a high standard for frequent posts, only to find this unmanageable to sustain and there for dropping off without any real consistency. Ensuring regularly posts and offering valuable information to your customers that they are likely to find helpful and interesting is the way to go. The content marketing that’s available on social media is vast and varied including, images, videos, infographics, guides and more.

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Sharing, is Caring

  • A Consistent Brand Image — Using social media helps drive your brand image and deliver the message your trying to convey. Due to the variety of social media platforms available, the style of each platform is somewhat varied and has different audiences. Consistency here is important, as your brand image will need to be portrayed over several social media sites that all cater slightly differently from one another.
  • Social Media Content Promotion — Social media marketing is the ideal way for sharing your best work, website or blog content with users. After acquiring a loyal following through social media, you’ll find engaging with your audience much easier as sharing your new product, content or website will be at the click of a button, allowing your customers access to find out more.
  • Sharing Curated Links — Not just a place to share your own content, products or services, social media should be looked at as the ideal platform to link externally too. If you find other sources providing valuable information you think your target audience will enjoy, feel free to link this to your own page so that they can enjoy this too. Linking this way to outside sources improves trust and reliability, not to mention the links you may receive in return.
  • Tracking Competitors — Monitoring your competition is nothing new, and by keeping an eye on their activities can provide valuable data for keyword research and other possible avenues you may wish to explore. Should they be developing an idea that you hadn’t thought of doesn’t mean no one else can do the same. There is no harm in putting your twist on things and implementing your own version.

Measuring performance through Google Analytics

Measuring Success with Analytics — Without tracking data you won’t be able to monitor the success of your campaigns. Google Analytics can be used as a great social media marketing tool that can help measure your most successful social media marketing techniques, as well as determine avenues which aren’t performing so well.

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Facebook for Social Media Marketing

Facebook, the whale of the social media platforms and continues to dominate to this day. An open space for users to actively engage with their friends, family and work colleagues. To achieve the best results here requires an active consistent marketing strategy that develops with your action plan. The place to start is to develop a fan page for your business that people will be able to read more about you, engage and share to their friends and family members. Your visual appearance here is paramount, and efforts to ensure your brand comes across well will determine how successful your brand does.

It is important to note that the very premise of Facebook was designed as a place for social interaction with friends and family, linking people from all over the world. Although its increasingly important for businesses to use Facebook for their business, we can’t overlook the fact that this is a place people go to relax and chat with friends, so the tone needs to remain light and friendly. There is also the option to use Facebook ad campaigns that comes with their own analytic reporting system and points people in the right direction to improve on their conversions in the long run. This maybe an area that needs to be looked into to develop your business online.

Twitter for Social Media Marketing

Twitter allows you to broadcast your news and updates across the web. By following tweeters in your industry allows you to acquire new contacts and information not to mention the likelihood of a fair few followers in return.

Twitter is ideal for promoting new products or services, highlighting special discounts and news with fun and brand enhancing tweets. Be sure to be active on this platform, as this stands the best way of engaging with your customers and building on that trust and loyalty. When your business has acquired a good and positive review be sure to retweet this and let all of your followers know.

LinkedIn for Social Media Marketing

LinkedIn is now well renowned as the professional social media marketing site. Groups created on LinkedIn is a great way to input information relating to your business with people in similar industries. LinkedIn has also become very popular for posting jobs and general employee recruiting.

Recommendations makes your business appear more credible and reliable for new customers, with LinkedIn your able to acquire accreditations for your skills and attributes that further displays the sense of professionalism that your company is looking for.

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Using YouTube for Social Media Marketing

YouTube remains the giant for creating and sharing video content, in recent years the site has also proved an incredibly powerful social media marketing tool. It is common today for businesses to try and encourage a worldwide hit, where your video will reach the millions and go viral, which would be the ideal for sharing your message and building brand awareness. However, this strategy is likely to fail, as millions of videos go active on YouTube every minute. Businesses who have managed their YouTube accounts successfully, are the ones who create helpful content to their target audience. With the aim built around information sharing, this “how to” approach will undoubtedly build your following and reputation online. Video content is also rated on Google search engines that will in turn help boost your websites results organically.

Using Reddit for Social Media Marketing

Reddit remains as an ideal place for sharing your content. Boasting a whopping 2 billion plus page views a month, Reddit has tremendous social media marketing potential, however, rules for success here are based on unique and interesting content. Posting sales content or marketing literature is sure to annoy Reddit’s users, your business may become victim to a tech-savvy community.

Should your content be the sort that the Reddit community would benefit from, you may reap the rewards and earn valuable traffic to your website.

Using social media in marketing correctly does a lot more than just improve site traffic. When conducting your marketing strategy online provides a valuable home for information understanding and learning from your target audiences.

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Paid Social Media Marketing

Paid social media marketing is a highly cost-effective way to expand your reach and build your brand image. When implemented correctly, your content, products, services and offers are visible to a massive audience at a very low cost. Most social media platforms offer targeting capabilities, which allows you to focus your budget on the type of people that are most likely to be interested in your business.

More Social Media Marketing Help

If you’re looking for help with your online marketing or require further information about implementing social media into your marketing strategy, we would love to hear from you. Our website has detailed information on the benefits of a successful marketing campaign followed by several “How to” guides that will help broaden your knowledge for your business marketing strategies.

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