Social networking platforms have grown to become one the most effective ways to directly connect with customers over the last decade. Whether you are just launching a startup for the first time or have many years of experience operating a large company, optimizing your social presence is essential in today’s digital age. Every great marketing plans integrates multiple facets of marketing, and social media is one such component.
It is important to keep in mind that a solid social media strategy takes time, and sometimes a fair amount of trial-and-error is necessary in the beginning. If you are new to social media, spend some time identifying your target audience. Once you feel confident in knowing who your customers are, research which social networks are most likely to act as the best host for your primary demographic, and then place emphasis on those areas.
For example, if your strategy involves a lot of image or video content, and your target base is a younger demographic, networks like Instagram and Facebook are ideal for generating better brand awareness.
Rule of thumb: Never get too comfortable. Social media is changing every day, which makes keeping up with the latest trends an absolute must. Here are a few trends currently seeing the most traction right now:
- Develop a multi-tiered social media team: Behind every great business is an exceptional marketing team. However, a designated marketing team is just one piece of the puzzle. Marketing should be a cross-functional effort that involves employees within different departments (including those who do not work directly in marketing). Today, more businesses are discovering that seeking ideas from different people within the company can help inspire a new point of view.
- Take advantage of social advertising: Long gone are the days of native banner ads. You may have noticed that you see fewer advertisements in your feed these days, and that is due to recent advances that allow companies to reach their target market with extreme precision. In addition, ad options like sponsored posts and interactive videos make it possible to engage a particular audience with captivating content (as opposed to passive promotions).
- Create content that boosts shareability: It is not enough to spread generic messages on a place like the internet. The web is already loaded with information at the click of a mouse. Great content requires a higher caliber of expertise: something that provides authoritative, enlightening, and/or entertaining information that drives customers to learn more about a business. (Tip: Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr are excellent examples of networks that can produce a high volume of shares with their “re-tweet,” “share,” and “reblog” buttons.)
- Integrate social media with related marketing components: Digital marketing involves numerous methods for turning potential customers into conversions. This includes things like email marketing, influencer marketing, content marketing, and blogging. Each of these pieces can be connected to create a stronger message by repurposing original content into various formats. One example of this could be producing a video for YouTube, sharing the video on Facebook, and sending a screenshot to your email subscribers. You could take it a step further by capturing a snippet of the video and turning it into an animated .gif for extending your reach on microblogs.
Most importantly, don’t be afraid to experiment and have some fun with it. Each triumph and failure provides a clearer analytical picture of who your audience is and what they will respond to the most positively. With a little time and effort, you will find that social media can be one of the most reliable avenues for a variety of successful marketing initiatives.
While you’re at it, stop by and say hello to Prudential Overall Supply on social media by visiting our social links in the sidebar.