In today’s technology-driven world, social media marketing has become imperative to an organization’s business strategy. Since its advent, social media has completely revolutionized the marketing business. Companies are looking to discover new arenas to interact with their customers and social media provides an opportunity to develop those relationships.
Here’s how you can use social media to your success:
- Get Your Story Straight
The most important aspect of social advertising is the content. A social media page/ account is an extension of your company – it takes forward your beliefs, ideas and philosophy. Therefore, the content should reflect your company’s beliefs. It can be in any format: a picture, a GIF, a video or even a hashtag. The content should be clear and to the point. If it is opaque and murky, the message is unclear and therefore not received by potential customers. You want your message to be fun, thought-provoking or informative. You don’t want your message to be boring, preachy or baffling. You can entertain your customers with a cheeky one-liner, a pun or even a cute rhyme. Most people would appreciate a chuckle while traversing through the humdrum of everyday life.
For effective marketing, keep the message short. Long messages usually go unnoticed on social media. By the time you get to your point, your potential customers would have already scrolled down. Succinctness is difficult to achieve, but long paragraphs will get ignored. Basically, the key to success here is: less is more.
- Indirect Advertising
Social Media is more about interacting than selling. They are meant to promote your brand and create a connection with your potential and existing customers. Social customer relationship management (CRM) is a symbiotic relationship; it is about enabling interaction with customers for the mutual benefit of both the customer and the company. The traditional methods of direct marketing do not appeal to most people on social media. A staggeringly high majority of people do not respond to such advertising. If you want a more direct form of advertising to connect with your target audience, use other forms of media like print, radio, or television.
- Always Keep Learning
Developments in computer science and, by virtue of that, Information Technology based platforms are constant and inevitable. Therefore, you must learn to adapt to the changes in the social media sector and update yourself from time to time. At any point of time, a social media platform has more tools and functions to offer than currently being used by the companies. Make sure that you are using the available features to the fullest. You must also keep an eye out for updates and new features that you can use to your advantage.
You must keep learning not just in terms of using the app or website, but also in terms of the content you post. See how your content is being taken by the public and adjust your strategy accordingly. While managing your profiles, you are bound to make mistakes. You may, for instance, post something that is offensive to a particular section of society. Instead of doubling down on it, just go ahead and apologize. Learn from your mistakes and move on.
- It’s a Numbers Game – increase your visibility
Let’s face it, we have the attention span of a goldfish. In this technology-driven world, we are constantly being distracted by shinier, brighter things. Usually, those things happen to be in our hands, pinging and dinging 24×7. We are perpetually being pulled in different directions by a variety of things. Therefore, the more visible you are on different platforms, the more successful your social deployment is.
A social media mantra that has been quite successful in increasing visibility is #hashtag. They help in getting the attention of other people on that platform, who, in turn, reinforce it with re-posts or re-tweets. When they get caught on, #hashtags spread like wildfire. Therefore, using #hashtag is a smart move.
- Improve Customer Experience – Back-link Your Profiles
Making the customer experience seamless across all available platforms is a key aspect. If you have accounts on different social media websites, it is important to link those channels profiles with each other. Also known as Inbound Link, these links are crucial in determining your popularity. You need to know all your customers on all available platforms. It will help in improving your visibility on various social media platforms. 3rd party applications can be used to link back to your profile. For instance, if you use Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest, you can post a link to your Facebook account in the profiles of each of these 3rd party applications. In this way, you can work on the social as a whole and not just one particular medium.
- Ask What Your Customers Want/Value
Most people do not use social media to engage with brands or companies. Majority of those who do state that they need the companies to be honest in their interaction. Therefore, there needs to be a culture of transparent communication with customers. People do not take to companies that struggle with transparency; such companies run the risk of being perceived as insincere or manipulative.
The best facet of social media is the possibility of direct interaction with the customers. It gives you an opportunity to have a dialogue with and ensure participation of various stakeholders. Gone are the days where you would receive customer feedback through customer feedback forms. Now you can receive it via interactive chats, polls, challenges, and idea jams. Giving customers a chance to engage with your brand by letting them vote on their preferred ideas or innovations. Getting customers invested in the outcome will help develop the brand as a whole and also create the brand loyalty you seek.
Though social media is an unpredictable environment, two things that can be said about it for certain are:
- There is a lot to be gained from investing in social media.
- There are ‘n’ number of brands and companies on social media who are trying to gain the people’s attention.
Therefore, companies need to offer their current and potential customers a reason to reach out to them via social media and not their competitors. The “build it and they will come” approach with respect to social media and customers has proved detrimental in the past. Companies need to realize that a lot more needs to be done to invite, engage and sustain customers on social media.