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If there is one trend that we’d separate as the most interesting one in the past decade - that would be social media. Saying that these platforms have revolutionized the way we communicate wouldn’t be an overstatement. And this isn’t just true for individuals; the world of social networks has provided ample opportunities for corporate interests as well. Furthermore, it’s not only large corporations that find new avenues for reaching their customers; small businesses have found numerous ways of utilizing social media marketing as well. And we’ll explore this trend in the article below!
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Go With Clear ObjectivesIn many cases, when smaller companies (especially mom and pop establishments) approach social media marketing, they have only one thing in mind: everyone’s on social media, we have to be on social media. And that right there is a huge mistake. If you ask us, not being on social media is better than being there without a clear set of objectives. Remember - personal individual profiles were on social media before businesses were with their corporate profiles. That’s why people expect a company’s Twitter or Instagram profile to have a clear voice, and some character. And this voice does not come from anywhere; it’s derived from the goals a company outlines in the very beginning.
Make sure you know what you want to achieve with your campaignYou shouldn’t just think that it’s important to get new followers on a daily basis; that’s not the end goal, but the way you’re going to get there. Your goal should be a ballpark number of followers you want to have in the next couple of months, for example; or the number of engagements on a series of posts that string into one online campaign.
Spark A ConversationIf you take a look at Facebook (the paradigm and pariah of social networks, in many ways), you’ll notice that its ranking algorithm tends to reward posts that have the most interactions. In other words, if your corporate profile makes a post that no-one responds to or talks about, fewer people will see it. After all, that’s only logical - Facebook wants people to use their social network as much as possible, and they achieve that by showing everyone content that’s interesting and relevant to them. So, as a small business that’s dabbling in social media marketing, you don’t want to be making statements - you want to be posing questions. That’s the right way to spark an online conversation, one that will lead as many people toward your brand as possible. For example - if a car dealership posts an image of a person who’s purchasing their first car, that’s an average post, one that won’t see a lot of engagement. But if they ask everyone following them - “What’s the first car you bought?”, that’s guaranteed to get more people’s attention, and thus reach a wider audience.
Be AppreciativeOn social networks, it’s easy for people to forget that it’s not just a medium for the content you want to share. To put it more precisely, in social media, the emphasis is on “social”, not on “media”. It’s not just a soapbox on which you’ll stand to promote the values of your company or an advertisement space where you’ll share your latest offers and promotions. It’s an honest-to-god opportunity for you to use social media marketing to connect with your target audience in a truly meaningful way, with those who enable your business to run and support you in your endeavors. You shouldn’t forget this, and always be thankful and humble to the customers who help you follow your business ideas and dreams. Share some of their positive messages, and like their personal posts and tweets. Try to create a community with them, instead of simply spouting content at them.
You need to stand out from the rest of the packRemember how we said that social media is a very personal, character-driven platform? Well, think about what people you follow on social media on your personal accounts. Sure, your family and friends; but apart from that, you pretty much only follow accounts and people that you find interesting, insightful or entertaining. And that’s a fact that should be a guiding light for you when you craft your social media marketing campaign as well. You need to build a consistent persona of your account and convey it properly to the target audience. Don’t be just another brick in the wall; be above the noise of mediocrity.