Most people understand that a strong social media presence is crucial to maintaining a brand or business during today’s day and age. Developing a strategy to connect through social platforms can be one of the most important, cost-effective, ways to maintain relationships with current and potential customers.
To fully leverage the benefits that social media can provide, strategy and consistency are key. Below are four key elements to consider when developing a professional social media presence.
Determine the Proper Platforms
Part of developing a smart social media strategy is understanding the functionality of each channel and how they align with the organization’s goals.
For example, Instagram is the best place for high-quality photo and video content. You can also utilize the IGTV feature for longer videos, Instagram Stories for shorter daily content and engagement, and host live video sessions with your audience. Instagram is also great for connecting with younger audiences, including millennials and Gen Z.
Instagram’s parent company, Facebook, is the king of social media with more than 1.59 billion users mostly in Gen X and Y age range. Facebook provides a platform for connecting with family, brands, and friends. Nearly 70 percent of U.S. adults use Facebook. If you’re trying to reach middle-aged adults, this platform is definitely where you want to be. Facebook analytics tools are also very comprehensive and easy to use. The platform also offers live video sessions with your audience, and a story feature – similar to Instagram’s.
Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube are additional platforms that should be researched and considered when developing your targeted social media strategy.
Twitter is a platform that is fast-paced similar to a newsroom. Businesses can engage with global audiences, allow space for consumers to act as brand ambassadors, monitor competition, and handle customer service inquiries quickly and efficiently.
The visual search engine and productivity tool, also known as the social platform Pinterest, holds an audience that is looking to be inspired and moved by content. Here, you can not only pin your products to your company’s board, but you can share blogs and create relationships by repinning informative posts from other users.
YouTube is great for video content that focuses on the culture of your business, shares industry talks and podcasts that showcase your business’ organizational and community efforts, and highlights product launches. With 1 billion visitors monthly, YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine and the 3rd most visited website worldwide! Having content on YouTube also improves your business’ search results through Google.
Source: Sprout Social https://sproutsocial.com/insights/social-media-content-strategy/
Planning your content ahead of time is one the most important parts of content strategy. It’s unproductive, unrealistic, and quite stressful to try and post in real-time, every day. For the bulk of your content, you can create a master content calendar that outlines your content per channel on a monthly or weekly basis. Of course, each channel speaks to a specific audience and can be used to help your organization reach certain business goals.
When you’re planning your daily content, consider weekly focus days. For example, maybe it would be beneficial to establish every Tuesday as “Industry Talk Tuesday”, where your audience can look forward to a post, short video, photo or quote that provides news and updates about your industry or business and is relevant to your brand. You can also try something more fun, like “Motivational Mondays” for example. This way, your audience can expect your brand to uplift them for the upcoming week!
Additionally, you can incorporate timing hooks and observances into your planned content. A good example for a health and wellness company could be to develop a campaign for National Wellness Month (August) and Self Improvement Month (September), in addition to the regularly scheduled content.
Source: Hootsuite https://blog.hootsuite.com/social-media-engagement/
It’s one thing to be active on social media, but it’s another to actively engage your audience on a consistent basis. Engagement is what lets you know that your audience is paying attention to your content, and likes it!
Engagement can be measured through likes, comments, shares, retweets, mentions, use of campaign hashtags and click-throughs. A key to maximizing engagement is knowing your audience. Research and analyze the types of content your audience responds best to, and incorporate that. For example, if you’re targeting millennials or Gen Z, it would be beneficial to include Instagram reels into your social media content strategy. Find ways to creatively integrate your content in a way that your audience will easily digest.
Utilize engagement features such as questions, polls, contests and giveaways, and other ways to encourage participation. Show your audience that you value their engagement by quickly liking and responding to comments and messages, spotlighting responses to polls and questions, etc. Be sure to stay topical with your content, and when appropriate, chime in on current events that are relevant to your brand. Consider creating a funny meme or gif that people can react to.
Source: Bakers Labs https://bakerlabs.co/using-social-media-as-a-cost-effective-means-of-marketing/
We’ll end with the reason that everyone is considering social media marketing in their business: cost-effectiveness! Social media campaigns produced by your team members, so there’s essentially no additional cost there. Content creation and monitoring tools themselves are many times free, and if not are relatively inexpensive and easy to track for ROI. Social media campaigns can assist in bringing down overall marketing spending.
This is particularly relevant for regional businesses that use social media platforms such as Facebook to target exactly who they need to based on audience demographics.
Octane’s dedicated Digital Team has the professional experience to assist you with creating a social media plan for your organization, creating graphics, writing posts, and assisting you with creating and maintaining a social media presence and reaching your business goals. If you would like to schedule a consultation, please contact us!