What Is Social Media Marketing? How Can It Benefit Your Business?
Is your business not doing as well as you’d hope, despite your online marketing efforts? Do you want to improve your brand awareness and/or online engagement? If your answer is yes, what you need is a social media marketing plan.
The coronavirus pushed more people into using the internet and social media more. It’s only natural that businesses start using social media marketing to keep up with clients. If you haven’t created a social media marketing plan for your business yet, now is the time to do it.
Below, we’ll explain the huge impact of social media marketing for businesses today. Keep reading to find out more about the influence of social media marketing. Below, we didn’t only include the why, but also how to create a social media marketing strategy.
What Is Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing is the presentation of a brand through social media platforms. These platforms can include social media like Facebook or community platforms like Reddit. The key asset of social media is that you tailor the content or ads you create to match your audience’s interests.
When you promote your brand on social media, you can take a range of actions, like:
- Posting text or images
- Asking questions or polls
- Creating video content
- Collaborating or hiring influencers
- Advertising on social media channels
- Uploading ephemeral content, and more
Today, social media platforms offer a variety of ways to engage with audiences. For example, Facebook and YouTube are the two most popular social media platforms in the US. Uploading video content is the most effective way to engage audiences on them.
On Instagram, you upload images or photos. On Twitter, you can post updates or short text posts. The bottom line is that each channel presents unique ways to boost engagement and interaction with audiences.
How Does Social Media Marketing Work
Social media marketing uses the influence and power that the channels already have to reach audiences. When you market on social media, you’re going to the hubs where your audiences often go. It’s like marketing in the main square rather than going door-to-door.
The core of social media marketing is to engage and interact with your audiences. Many brands use social media as space where they can build communities. This creates a win-win situation for you and your target audiences. On social media, you can post updates, promotions, and more. Your audiences can get wind of them as soon as you do. Your clients can give queries via social media and get instantaneous answers.
Another big advantage of social media marketing is that you don’t only get high brand exposure, but also a big ROI. Social media marketing can also drive huge amounts of traffic to your website. Because social media boosts brand awareness, your sales or conversions also increase.
Most Important Social Media Platforms
- Users: During the second quarter of 2021, Facebook reported almost 1.9 billion daily active users (DAU). Overall, daily active users accounted for 66 percent of monthly active users.
- Industry impact: B2C
- Biggest Attractions: mobile integration and mobile messaging capabilities.
- Uses: In the last reported quarter, the number of global monetizable daily active users (mDAU) on Twitter amounted to 206 million users.
- Industry impact: B2C
- Best for: User-generated content; advertising
- Users: LinkedIn now has almost 740 million members. It has over 55 million registered companies.
- Industry Impact: B2B
- Biggest Attractions: 44% of LinkedIn users take home more than $75,000 per year; 50% of college graduates in the US are LinkedIn users (Pew Research Center 2018 Social Media Use study)
- Users: YouTube has more than 2 billion logged-in monthly users. It is lower than Facebook, but what makes it different is the fact that you can watch YouTube videos without creating an account.
- Industry impact: B2C
- Biggest Attractions: Brand promotion; entertainment, and how-to videos
- Users: As of the second quarter of 2021, photo and video sharing app Snapchat had 293 million daily active users worldwide
- Industry impact: B2C
- Biggest Attractions: Promotional activities related to products for teenagers and the younger generation
- Users: As of the second quarter of 2021, Pinterest had 454 million monthly active users worldwide.
- Industry impact: B2C
- Biggest attraction: Visual advertising; motivation, high user engagement metrics
How To Market On Social Media
You can divide the steps of social media marketing into four general ones. The steps are planning, engaging, checking analytics, and advertising.
As always, the first big step is research and planning. Discover which social media platform your audiences prefer to hang out on. Find out how your competitors are doing their social media campaigns. Keep your ears and eyes open to the latest trends on social media sites and platforms.
After you collect your research, do a social media audit. Where are your social media efforts taking you? Is your current social media marketing strategy working for you if you have one already? How can you improve it?
If you don’t have a social media strategy yet, make one. Create your accounts on a variety of social media platforms. Again, refer to your audience persona and where they like to be present.
After you set up your accounts, you can post unique and engaging content. This is possible through a variety of strategies. You can make infographics, post a blog, or film videos. We’ll expand more about the different content types later on.
Don’t stop at posting and watching how people react to your content. You also want to listen and interact with them. Remember, every social media marketing strategy must focus on engagement.
While you’re putting out content and engaging on social media, you need to how people receive it. Checking your analytics is how you measure the success rate of your campaigns. To do this, you use analytics tools, like Google Analytics, ShortStack, and BuzzSumo.
Social media analytics tools and programs won’t take up many resources on your computer. However, if you’re working with a laptop, the analytics tools and content work may be too much for it. Find the best laptops to handle your social media marketing projects on lenovo
Once you have enough funds, consider advertising on social media. It will widen your reach and help more people find your brand. Plus, social media ad campaigns can let you create target audiences.
Finding The Right Content To Engage Your Audiences With
The content you put out on your social media will also depend on your goals. Do you want to educate your audiences about a product or service? Do you want your audiences to spread the word about your brand? Do you want them to visit your website and drive traffic to it?
It helps to know the right mix of content that will engage your audience. Finding the right one will help guide you in the decision-making about the content you post. A good rule of thumb is to make 80% of your posts informative and educational while 20% will promote the brand.
You can also create a new content mix, so you can meet all your goals. For example, you might want 50% of content to drive traffic to your website. Meanwhile, 30% will come from curated sources and 20% is about your company culture.
Top Strategies For Social Media Marketing
Not sure how to tackle social media marketing? We’ve got you covered. Below are some strategies to consider for your social media marketing plan.
Focus on Personalization To Improve Customer Experience
People will give you more attention or feel better about your service if you customize their experience. It’s also more engaging and more likely to build customer loyalty. Plus, you can increase the shareability of your posts on social media.
To do this, hit your audiences with retargeting ads. If you sell products, take a page from Coca-Cola’s #ShareACoke campaign. You can also create an interesting personality quiz like “What kind of spirit animal are you?”
Create A Community For Your Audience
You can make many social media accounts for your brand on different channels. However, this doesn’t mean that a community will rise from your followers. You have to work at creating a community first.
Remember that social media is about being social. Most of the time, it’s you who has to start a conversation for your audiences to engage with later. Ask questions, gather opinions, share newsworthy data, and like/share their posts.
Get Influencers Or Micro-Influencers To Help You Out
Did you know that 63% of consumers trust what influencers say more than what brands recommend? Sometimes, the best way to gain attention or trust from your audiences is to hire an influencer or micro-influencer. Influencers are people on social media channels with over 100,000 followers.
Micro-influencers are people with 1,000 to 100,000 followers on their social media. Both types focus on a specific niche or area. Also, they often come across as industry experts or specialists in their niche.
Each type has its pros and cons. Influencers can reach wider audiences but can cost you a lot. Micro-influencers often have stronger relationships, but often work in a smaller niche.
Social Media Marketing Tips
Like other marketing tactics, you need to remember the SMART rule on social media. The SMART rule keeps in mind five specific goals. These goals need to be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound.
As we said, research plays a big part in your social media marketing strategy. What you learn from the beginning can influence your decision-making for the rest of the way. Thus, be extra careful when you’re researching and building up background knowledge.
One of the most important things you need to learn and know from the heart is your audience.
Having a deep understanding of your audience can make or break your social media strategy. It’s not enough to stop at creating an audience persona. You also want to keep researching your audience and how they react to the things that come up online.
Also, social media marketing for small businesses often focuses on localized marketing. The great thing about social media advertising is that some systems let you localize. When you create your ad campaigns, Facebook lets you pick the places and people to show your ads to.
Finally, you’d want to encourage your followers to create content for your brand. This type of content is what you’d refer to as user-generated content or UGC. 79% of consumers say that UGC influences their shopping decisions.
That’s the end of our guide on the influence of social media marketing for businesses. We hope you found that this guide on social media marketing helpful and informative. Now, you have a deeper understanding of the importance of social media marketing.
Did you enjoy reading this guide on social media marketing and why it’s important for your business? Do you want to see more content about social media or digital marketing? Feel free to head over and check out our other guides now.