So, you’ve just launched your new website. As an up and coming business, it’s important to understand how online marketing can help you build your business – namely social media marketing. These days, it’s simply not enough to have a website; you don’t just flip the switch, sit back and wait for customers to find you. In order to reach potential consumers, you have to invest some time in exploring a wide variety of online marketing options.
One option is social media marketing. Many businesses prefer social media marketing to other marketing channels. It’s cost effective, highly interactive, and extremely popular. However, many business owners are still skeptical of using social media. Those who don’t understand the benefits, can’t see how it fits into their marketing plan, or just barley dip their toe in the social media waters, might not fully understand the many benefits social media has to offer. Here are a few ways social media can contribute to the success of your business and help convince even the biggest skeptic (YOU) that it’s time to cannon ball!
Are you a social media skeptic?
Think about what social media marketing can do for you:
Attract New Customers
As with any business, driving traffic to your website should be your first and foremost objective. After all, how will consumers buy your products if they don’t even visit your website? Go over your blog’s traffic stats and you will see that social media will be among the top three sources. In fact, for new bloggers and business owners, social media is more important than direct and search engine traffic. Social networking websites top the list of site referrals, not to mention the time on site is likely higher than any other referral source.
Learn More About Your Audience
For any business that wants to make waves in the marketplace, the key to success is knowing your audience. What they like, what they want, and what features they would prefer, are all important information for marketing and customer satisfaction. Social media makes it possible for you to know the inside scoop and gain those types of insights instantly.
Tools such as Facebook Insights and Hootsuite help you learn the dominant languages spoken by your audience. It also provides you other relevant information, like age and gender. This insight helps businesses cater campaigns and product offerings to attract target audiences, resulting in a higher return on investment.
Interact Directly with Your Audience
Social media websites provide businesses instant access to positive or negative feedback, which plays an important role in helping businesses gain valuable insight into the customer’s perspective. For example, if you are about to launch a new product, but want to learn about what customers would think about it, share a picture of it on Facebook or throw in a few hints here and there describing the product and you will instantly gain an insight about your customers (or potential clients) think.
Get Instant Feedback
To boost sales, base your new products on the ideas and feedback from your customers. Use social media marketing to your advantage and boost sales. Communication is important for any business. Positive engagement can help improve your brand’s reputation. Social media marketing provides consumers the opportunity to interact freely and quickly.
Respond To Problems Immediately
Accidents happen and that’s perfectly fine as long as you treat your customers well. If your business dispatches the wrong product or sends out something that is not up to the standard, you want to know it happened. Social media marketing makes it possible for consumers to highlight their problems and reach out to you directly. Not only does will this provide you future guidelines on how to improve your services but will also give you the opportunity to build your brand’s reputation positively by responding to complaints and queries in a positive manner.
Expand Your Reach
Social media marketing makes it possible for companies to increase their reach through targeted ads and sponsored messaging. Think big and use social media marketing to reach customers from all around the world, as opposed to using conventional means of advertisements, such as billboards and posters, which you can only use locally.
Nurture Stronger Client Relationships
The key to increasing customer loyalty and gaining trust is giving your consumers online access to information about your company. Ignoring the importance of a meaningful social media presence is one way of losing the opportunity to gain new prospective customers or nurture better relationships with existing consumers. Increase customer loyalty and gain the trust of your prospective and current customers by creating accounts on various social media profiles, such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Boost Your Brand
Social media marketing allows businesses to build a unique brand identity. Social media profiles give brands a personality on social networks. The overall look and feel of your profile depicts your brand’s personality. After all, it is important you stand out as the new brand on the block. Do not be afraid of being witty or humorous, as customers love businesses that give out positive vibes. Use social media marketing to woo in your consumers.
Deliver Content Consistently
To increase your following online and increase engagement on social media, post unique and interesting content consistently. Plan content and create content categories to keep track of the specific types of posts you are uploading. You may use previous blog posts and articles but schedule them accordingly. Build your content library and then update your schedule with the respective category.
Share In Seconds
In the past, it was not possible for marketers to reach out to a wide target audience in a matter of seconds but with the help of social media marketing, everything is possible. You can share content much easier and faster. Share blog posts, content, pictures and announcements on your brand’s social network accounts. Ensure that the content you share interests your audience for maximum exposure and ‘likes’. However, make sure you develop unique content.
Try not to curate too much of your social media content your target audience might have seen before. Always share unique, informative and useful content on your brand’s social media website. You want your company to stand out on social media as an innovator, not a copycat.
Social media marketing is one of the most inexpensive yet effective ways of increasing brand awareness. The costs associated with traditional advertising methods are comparatively higher. With social media marketing, all you need is a community manager. A community manager boosts brand awareness and broadens your reach through social media. In addition, their responsibilities include fostering healthy relationships with online audiences in different regions.
Understand & Get Ahead Of Your Competitors
For any new business in the block, it is important you gain key information about your competitors to improve your market intelligence. This insight will prove highly favorable in helping you make strategic business decisions in the future. Creating search streams in Hootsuite to monitor mentions of your competitor’s name and product can do this. Now that all your social media accounts are ready, it is imperative you put it to good use. Here are some of the best social media marketing tips to promote your business while saving valuable time and resources.
Stream Your Content Live
Live streaming is a new trend that has taken social media marketing by a storm. Live streaming is definitely something you should try. Live streaming is a great way to show consumers the faces behind the brand, giving them the chance to get to know the brand better. It paves the way to customer loyalty and helps form new connections. Use live streaming to give consumers a behind the scenes sneak peek or a feel of the overall environment of your brand. A ‘brand face’ plays an imperative role in putting customers at ease.
Leverage Social Media Advertising
Apart from engaging with your consumers online and replying to customer feedback, use social media to advertise your products. Use paid social media channels through major social networking websites, especially Facebook and Twitter. Posting advertisements on social media is one of the most efficient ways of increasing brand awareness. It’s one of the major ways people find out about new services, new brands and new products. The reason for its huge impact is because a majority of adults and youngsters in the US are on social media.
Offer Specials and Promotions
People love discounts, sales, and promotions, basically anything that would help them save cash. Announce exclusive sales online to captivate the attention of a larger audience. The mere mention of a sale will cause people to go in to frenzy. In addition, offer special gifts, competitions and prizes to inspire the loyalty of your customers.
Use Hash Tags
To make your brand popular online, start using hash tags strategically. Use hash tags on various social media websites, such as Google+, Facebook and Twitter. Ensure that the hash tags are easy to spell and remember so consumers can familiarize with them. To check the impact of the hash tag, check for it on all channels to determine how effective it is. While, you can come up with brand hash tags that feature your company’s name, hash tags that merely describe your brand will also work well.
If you do not use quality and professional photos for your social media marketing campaign, you are making a huge mistake. A good picture speaks a thousand words; hence use imagery and videos to communicate with consumers visually. Consumers find images more attractive and are able to process them a lot quicker. Do not underestimate the power of vibrant picture that can instantly brighten up your brand’s Instagram account.
Use The Right Platform
Every social media platform serves a different purpose. While Pinterest is an excellent platform for arts and crafts businesses, it is not suitable for promoting home loans. Understanding this can make your marketing efforts go more smoothly. That said, you probably wouldn’t want to promote a law firm on Instagram or a kid’s bounce house birthday party business on LinkedIn. This gets back to understanding where your audience is.
Know When To Post
Research the best time to post images, messages, etc. SumAll.com is an online platform that has found the optimum times to post on various platforms. Experiment with different days and times, as well as different types of content. Learn from this variety and then schedule your posts when you know you will make a bigger splash.
Use Time Efficiently
Setting up a new business requires a lot of time and effort, as there are numerous tasks you need to get done, whether it’s sending emails or sitting though meetings. Even if you are immensely organized, you may still feel like there are simply not many hours left in the day. Social media may be one of those tasks you can delegate to a younger (and probably more hip) employee to help you keep up to speed with trends. Just be sure you don’t get too far out of the loop.
Find Inspiration For Your Blog Posts
Take inspiration from your most popular tweets or Facebook posts and develop them into blog posts. Another way to get new ideas is to read through comments posted by customers. These blog posts do not have to be long but can consist of only a few paragraphs. What matters here is quality, not quantity.
Build Trust With Your Customers
Understand that people do not want to connect with faceless corporation but many brands still do not understand this and continue to use conventional marketing strategies. Be honest with customers if you want to gain their trust and want them to respect and stay loyal to your company.
In our opinion, social media marketing is a must for businesses, but first you have to decide which platforms best suit your business, generate quality content, and strategically target your audience before you dive in. Not only does social media help you share information about your business, but now your customers, who are likely raving fans, can share your business across their network of friends.
This is the true power of social media. It’s a tool to monitor popular trends and find new ways to grow your business, as well as turn your customers into your online brand ambassadors! We can get you there; let’s talk about your social media marketing!