Every day, approximately 3.2 billion people use social media worldwide. That means that nearly 42 percent of the global population regularly check Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube or another social media network. Chances are, your customers are among them. Using these simple social media marketing tips, businesses of any size can reach new markets, build awareness, and drive sales.
You spend thousands of dollars and untold hours blogging, tweeting and crafting the perfect Facebook page. But if no one knows where to find you, you have just wasted a great deal of money and effort. Start with a few key steps:
Now that people know where to find you, take time to interact. The key word in social media tips for business is “social,” after all. When people comment on your blog or Facebook page, respond to their comments and engage in a positive conversation.
But what about negative comments? When you receive negative comments, respond quickly, calmly and politely. Suggest that the commenter message you privately, and then continue the conversation offline, if necessary.
3. Know Your Audience
Your message won’t be effective unless its specifically designed for who you are trying to target. Developing a relevant buyer persona is essential for successful social media marketing. Three pieces of information offer insight into pinpointing your audience.
- Review happy clients.Clients that have been pleased by a company’s product or service are prime starting points when building a buyer persona. Study their industries, demographics, and their goals closely to understand who you should be targeting.
- Nail down pain points. What question does your product answer? How does it make your buyer’s job easier? Only by thoroughly understanding this can an organization show their value.
- Survey customer support. Talk to the people who are on the front lines. What are the questions they hear most often? Knowing this shows you the direction to take in the content that will most likely engage and interest your targets.
Now let’s answer “where”.
4. Decide Which Platforms are Right for You
Depending on the social network you’re posting on, you’ll need to learn the various purposes of each network.
The top 5 Social Media Sites include:
- Facebook: the largest network by far allows you to reach a very wide set of users that could be interesting for your business. It also has the most flexible and targeted advertising capabilities
- LinkedIn: the largest professional network is very useful if you are selling to businesses or are in the services business yourself
- Instagram: an efficient and easy way to promote images of your products or services. If you are into handmade or food items, it’s extremely effective
- Twitter: useful if you are providing thought leadership or news services. It requires more effort to get a loyal following but can be very influential when you do
- Pinterest: is also a great tool for businesses to promote products and services especially if you are targeting women buyers
Once you learn about the varying networks, you can focus on which ones you think will mesh well with your business.
A major component of killing it at your social media strategy is using the right words. The way you get your message across will vary depending on the social network you’re posting content on.
5. Engage with Visuals
Images and videos spark engagement and increase conversions. Your audience will remember a visual much longer than plain text. But make sure that the photos and videos you use are relevant and of high quality.
Use compelling visuals to enhance your story and personalize your message. For instance, post photos of employees presenting at a recent tradeshow. Link the photos to an article about the presentation on your blog. You can also post videos of customer success stories.
6. Strategize for Success
While social media has opened new and budget-friendly avenues for connecting with customers, embrace these opportunities mindfully. Social media can prove distracting, even in the business world.
First and foremost, take time up front to develop a digital marketing plan. Of all the social media tips for business, this is perhaps the most critical. Set measurable business goals and align your social media efforts to those objectives. You will generate better results from posting wisely on a few carefully chosen platforms.
Secondly, use a social media calendar. Any social media expert will emphasize the importance of posting consistently. Create a posting schedule and stick to it. To help with this effort, consider using interns, as well as social media management tools that automate the posting on a schedule you define.
Getting the Most Out of Social Media Tips for Business
From 140-character tweets to informative blog posts and compelling images on Instagram, social media demands a whole new level of digital expertise. No matter how small your business, social tools can help you better connect with your audience, reach new potential customers, and increase awareness of your brand. If the possibilities seem overwhelming, start small. Remember: you don’t need to do it all. Take a focused approach—start small with one or two key networks and build your social media marketing efforts over time.