Social media has long been one of the best tools for business owners to gain brand recognition and grow their business. Recent societal and economic shifts have only increased the need for your business to cultivate a robust social media marketing strategy.
As of February 2021, Pew Research reports that 72% of all US adults are active users of one or more social media platforms. When you narrow the results down by specific age groups, the number of active social media users jumps to 84% of all US adults aged 18 to 29 years old and 82% of those aged 30 - 49 years old.
While these numbers clearly show the significant size of the social media audience, it is essential to note that social media users are increasingly savvy, and how you reach out and interact with social media users will have a massive impact on the overall success of your social media marketing strategy.
Let's take a deeper look into some of the best social media marketing tips to help build your following, spread the word about your product or business, and boost your brand image.
Know Your Audience
The first step in any social media management plan is to identify your audience. Who is most likely to find your product or business useful? This is the demographic you will want to focus your social media marketing strategy on.
When determining your target audience, it can be helpful to create categories narrowing your audience down to your core demographic, the users most likely to use your product or patronize your business, as well as secondary demographics which may not use your product directly but are likely to be connected to someone who would. For example, let's say that the core demographic for your product or business is pre-teens or teenagers; you would also want to consider engaging the demographic most likely to include the parents of your core audience as they are likely to exert some control or influence over the purchasing power of the core demographic.
Choose The Right Social Media Platform
Once you have determined your core audience and any secondary groups, you can develop an effective social media management strategy to reach them where they are at.
Statistics show that Instagram, Snapchat, What's App, and TikTok tend to be more popular with 18 - 29-year-olds, while the 30 - 49-year-olds favor Twitter, Pinterest, and Reddit. Conversely, YouTube and Facebook are relatively popular with all age groups.
Choosing the right social media platforms to reach your target audience goes beyond knowing which platforms are most popular with which age brackets. An excellent social media management strategy should also determine the character of the business or product being marketed to ensure that the lion's share of social media marketing efforts is directed towards the social media platform that best matches the nature of the product being offered. For example, home improvement, interior decorating, beauty, and fashion products are a perfect match for platforms with a strong focus on visual content such as Pinterest, TikTok, YouTube, or Instagram. On the other hand, business, electronics, and tech-related products may showcase best on Twitter, Reddit, or LinkedIn.
Read The Room
It is not enough to know your target audience and where to reach them. In today's highly polarized social climate, it is crucial that you know the general sentiment prevailing within your target audience and adjust your messaging to match the shifting mood.
The strain of the global pandemic and the current US political atmosphere has increased the need to stay tuned in to what your audience is feeling. You can find real-world examples of companies doing this well (and some not so well) during the early days of the pandemic when social uncertainty and fear were at their peak. During this volatile period, several well-known brands which generally catered to a highly social and urban crowd changed the tone of their social media messaging to one of community concern and support rather than their usual celebratory party vibe.
Interact With Your Audience
It is crucial to remember that social media marketing is social. Sure, sticking a glossy ad campaign post in the middle of a popular social media platform will get eyes on your brand; however, this type of advertising misses out on much of the value of social media engagement.
A robust social media management plan should include digital marketing AND interactive social engagement. Genuinely effective social media engagement is the path to building a loyal customer base who will support your business and help it grow through advocacy and word-of-mouth advertising. It takes familiarity and trust to develop this type of customer loyalty, so it is critical that your social media accounts actively interact with followers by answering questions, offering humble and productive responses to complaints, acknowledging praise, and offering valuable tips and suggestions.
The world of social media is a fast-moving and often unstable environment. Trends blow in and out again in the blink of an eye. The latest catchy saying, funny meme, or viral dance craze can be prevalent one week and wholly outdated the next. By keeping a close eye on the latest trends and developing a keen sense of developing fads, you can dramatically increase the odds of producing viral content and spreading your brand to an even greater audience.
A word of caution, use good judgment when creating trendy content. It is better to let a trend pass by than to force your brand into a trend that does not fit well or one that has already passed its prime.
Strive For Quality Over Quantity
This is another area where discernment and sound judgment is critical. Social media users are bombarded with content at every turn. Low-quality, generic content will not hold your audience's attention and will not drive engagement. It is far more beneficial in the long run to focus your energy and budget on creating high-quality, high-value content that provides valuable information or solid entertainment to your audience. The more valuable your content is, the more likely that your audience will seek further engagement and the more apt to share your content, and therefore your brand, with others.
As discussed above, quality weekly content outweighs generic daily content; however, it is essential to be consistent with your content posting schedule and social media engagement. Social media audiences have a notoriously short memory, and brands that take long breaks from posting and interacting online risk losing their audience to a more active competitor.
It does not take a full-blown ad campaign or daily video blog to stay visible and engaged. Simply responding to followers and creating a few short but relevant daily comments or quick shout-outs are generally enough to keep your brand name current in between more targeted content postings and marketing campaigns.
Remember that the core purpose of your social media marketing endeavors is to build and grow your brand following. Spend the time and effort to make sure that every aspect of your social media account, from the username to the avatar, to the banner image, reflects your brand image positively. Consider enlisting the help of a digital marketing agency that provides web design and development services to help your business take full advantage of the advertising opportunities by optimizing your brand imaging for each social media platform.
Practice Shameless Self-Promotion
This can be one of the most complex areas to master. Many of us feel somewhat awkward about tooting our horns. It is important to remember that you are engaging in social media interactions to promote your business or brand. You will want to promote your brand in a positive and assertive way without being obnoxious or boastful.
Monitor Your Social Media Strategy
Finally, do not overlook the importance of consistent monitoring and tracking your social media marketing results. Social media management is not a set it and forgets it endeavor. It is vital to the continuing growth of your business that you keep a close eye on the views clicks. It likes that your content is generating so that you can spot shifts in engagement quickly and adjust your brand messaging, content subject matter, overall tone, or style accordingly to maintain attention and interest.
This is another area where the professional assistance of a digital marketing agency like Dexterous Media Group can be an invaluable resource to help you accelerate your business growth. Several complex metrics are involved in evaluating the health of a social media marketing campaign. A professional team will be able to recognize and incorporate patterns in engagement such as clicks, likes, views, and comments into the standard return on investment (ROI) data to generate the most accurate and compelling snapshot of your social media marketing strategy.
Contact Us Today!
Suppose you are ready to grow your business or brand by engaging with your audience on social media. Contact Dextrous Media Group today to discuss your goals and find out how to help. We can't wait to help you grow your business!