Now more than ever, social media marketing is important to any business, big or small. With 2020 being the year of lockdowns, social media consumption increased more than it ever has, forcing many businesses to up their game when it comes to marketing on this channel.
Chances are, if you’re looking to grow your business, you’ll need to look into growing your social media audience, as well. Let’s take a look at what social media marketing consists of, as well as some strategies for growing your following organically.
What is Social Media Marketing?
Social media marketing is the act of connecting through your customer base as well as potential customer base through the use of social media platforms. This can be done in a number of ways, depending on the platform, or platforms, that you choose to use. The most popular platforms are Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Instagram, and Linkedin. New platforms are consistently being introduced as well, but the ability to forecast their popularity in the shadow of the existing giants is difficult to say the least.
Is Social Media Marketing Necessary?
In short, yes. Social media marketing is an invaluable tool that allows you to connect with your audience and engage with them. This engagement can help you build your brand from the ground up, as well as drive website traffic which can result in increased sales. If you’re looking to continue to grow your business, you’ll need to know how to use social media marketing.
Strategies for Marketing with Social Media
When you want to market your business using social media, you’ll need to have a plan with specific strategies for creating customer engagement. Use some of the following strategies to acquire new fans and potential customers.
Use the Right Platform
Depending on your focus or product, you’ll want to choose your social media marketing platform accordingly. Instagram is a great place for photo rich marketing, while Twitter may be better specifically for engagement with your audience and your customers. It also does a great deal of good to know where your specific type of product or service does well. Each social media platform has established communities – try and find them to increase your scope.
If you want to make sure that you’re using the right platform for your business, look at existing data regarding the reach of your posts. If you find a platform that has more engagement, it’s worth focusing more of your efforts there while slowing content down on slower platforms.
High Quality, Not High Frequency
It’s no secret that users are shown what the platform wants them to see. While the average user may be able to see 1,500 different timeline posts on any given day, the algorithm on most platforms will limit that. Sometimes that limitation drops their content to 300 of those original 1,500 posts that they could see. What’s that mean for you?
It means that posting excessively doesn’t increase the likelihood of your content being seen. In fact, it means quite the opposite. If the algorithm picks up that you’re posting incessantly, it’s likely many of your posts will be hidden. This is why the creation of high-quality, occasional posts and content is important. Content needs to be relevant, well thought out, and created with intent.
Optimize Your Accounts
The algorithm was mentioned in the last section, and it’s a concept that most people dread. It’s hard to predict what the algorithm favors, in most cases, so the best that can be done about it is the optimization of social media accounts. When the word optimization is used, it refers to:
- Easy to remember usernames for search engine optimization
- Recognizable photos or logos for profile pictures
- Descriptions that focus on heavily used keywords
- A link in posts as well as your profile to your website
These four things can dramatically increase views on your social media account, as well as increase traffic to your website.
Create Varied Content
It’s important to create numerous types of content if you’re looking to increase your social media audience organically. This is more important for multi-faceted platforms, like Twitter and Facebook, as different forms of media can be posted, whereas Instagram is entirely photo and video based.
Creating posts that are informational or verbal, videos, photos, or surveys encourages more reach, and can encourage participation from your audience naturally. It’s important to remember that your audience, if large in size, will not consume media the same way on an individual basis. The method of posting with varied content makes sure that all the bases are covered in terms of preferences.
Utilize Live Streaming When Appropriate
One of the most interesting tools when it comes to social media is the ability to live stream to your audience. Most platforms are optimized in such a way that live streams are given more visibility than traditional posting methods, and reach the majority of an audience rather than just some of one.
If you have opportunities to live stream content, like product demos or Reddit-style “Ask Me Anything” forums, absolutely do it. This is an experience for your audience that sets you ahead of many others, and allows for actual connections with them through the use of Q&A, and even inclusion should you choose to allow others to join the stream as guests.
Social media marketing is absolutely necessary in today’s market. This channel is a great way to reach an audience, as well as engage with them, making your business a more personal connection than a cold one. If you’re looking to increase your social media audience organically, be sure to do the following:
- Use the right platform
- Create high quality, engaging content
- Optimize your social media accounts for search results and recognition
- Make sure your content is varied in terms of material
- Live stream to connect with your fans
Using these strategies can help you see organic success in a fiercely competitive market!