How to Use Social Media Effectively for Your Business
Is social media one of the greatest developments of the information age, or is it the doom of true community interaction and a conduit for the vanity of various generations? We don’t know the answer to this, and thinking about it makes us sad, so instead we’re going to look at how it can be used to generate awesome results for businesses.
Whether you love it or loathe it, it is hard to deny the value that social media has as a tool for businesses. When used properly, social media marketing can help your business to manage its relationships with clients, build up company culture, and generate great, qualified leads. Even if you don’t use social media on a personal level, there are millions of people who do, so it is important to know how to use social media effectively for your business, and the team at FirstPage Marketing is here to help.
Challenges of Using Social Media for Businesses
Many businesses struggle with their social media efforts because it always feels like they are reacting in the moment or they lack direction. Without the proper goals and tactics, it is easy to waste time and only end up spinning your tires without gaining any meaningful traction. Because of these challenges, many business owners avoid social media altogether and they end up missing out.
In order to succeed on social media, it is important to treat it like any other business or marketing tool while also recognizing its uniqueness. Social media is a platform to broadcast messages, but it is also a place to go to interact with and listen to your audience. It can be used to keep your finger on the pulse of a business, track competition, and help customers to feel like they have a legitimate relationship with a company.
Effective Social Media for Businesses
When using social media for businesses, it is necessary to do more than simply set aside a bit of time each week to post a few pictures of jobs and hope that somebody comments on something. It is necessary to put together a coordinated marketing effort designed specifically for the social media channels that a company plans on using that coordinates with that company’s overall marketing goals. Some of the steps to take to get the ball rolling on a business’ social media use include:
Know Your Marketing Targets and Set Relevant Social Media Goals
Again, social media is a tool that can help a company to achieve your overall marketing goals. If the company’s goals are to improve its image, then its social media goals should be centred around building a presence that reflects the type of company it wants people to see. Many people’s marketing goals involve expanding awareness, which translates easily into growing a social media audience by a set number each month. If the marketing goals are directed at bringing in more leads, the company’s goals through social media should be targeted towards getting interaction on its campaigns that lead to conversions.
An incredibly useful tool for managing goals and content on Facebook and Instagram is Facebook Business Manager. It allows you to schedule posts and has a wealth of metrics and analytics that can help you to set and track goals.
Do Your Research and Analysis
Before getting started with any decisions, it is important to start research with an unbiased approach. Look at competitors to see what they are doing, and gauge whether or not it is working for them. Ask some of the following questions when looking at the competition:
- Are they getting reasonable engagement on their posts?
- Do they have a reasonable following?
- What kind of material are they posting, and what kind of content themes are performing well within that material?
By reviewing a wide range of competitors, it can get fairly easy to see what is and is not working.
On top of researching the competition, it is also important to research customers and clients. As is the case with any marketing endeavour, it is vital to know who the target audience is and how to reach them. What social media platforms do they use? How do they behave on those platforms? There are loads of analytics resources available to help answer these questions when getting started with marketing on social media.
Consider Using Paid Social Media Content
One of the best opportunities that social media offers for businesses is the ability to publish targeted advertisements. Social media ads are a great way to reach new, qualified audiences in order to raise awareness and generate conversions. Paid ads are the best way to expand an audience on most social media platforms.
Plan Out Your Content
Posting content in a spur-of-the-moment fashion can work well in some situations for a company, but it can be inconsistent and the quality is typically lower than if content is planned out ahead of time. Before beginning your campaign, plan out a couple of themes that your content should fit within. Content themes ensure direction and consistency so that you can direct your viewers’ attention to something that you want them to see and so that they know what to expect from your content. Examples of themes could include featured products, behind-the-scenes, team building posts, contests, and special occasions.
Once content themes have been put together, it is important set aside time at the start of each month to plan out that month’s content. Compile pictures, videos, and captions in a document that can easily be used to post on the various social media platforms being used. Be sure to consider holidays and special events when planning out a monthly social media calendar.
If you are interested in finding out more about how to create an effective social media marketing campaign for your business, or if you want help with getting started in the wide world of social media marketing from a company that has been around the block, the team at FirstPage Marketing would love to share our experience with you. Feel free to get in touch with us today.