We are often asked by clients how they can get more out of their social media campaigns, how often they should communicate to their audience and why they should even bother with it. Some even ask whether they should be buying audiences (no - waste of money) to look like they are something worthwhile following. If these questions look familiar, then you are not alone! We have worked with clients on social media calendars, campaign and communication schedules as well as growing followers. It takes time but as with all forms of marketing, if you understand your customer and how to communicate with them, you will gain cut through. Remember that they have followed you because they are interested in your product or service, so you need to talk to them. Don't be afraid to try new ways to communicate (video for example) and A/B test your collateral to identify the most successful. Don't follow the crowd either because someone else is doing it. You need to identify the best social media channels for your business and spend more time communicating through those. Get it right and you will drive traffic to your website (which is your shop window) visits to your blog, improve your SEO ranking and drive up conversions.
Is it worth setting up a community around your page? Is that something that might create a point of difference for you and be enticing for your audience. You would be giving members the ability to communicate freely with each other on matters that they care about.
Take the time to identify the best channels for your business. Different social media platforms are better for b2b sales over b2c. Don't assume that because everyone else is doing it that it will work well for your business. You need to identify who your target market are and sell to them.
Ask yourself which social channels your target segments may be on. Is it worth spending all that time designing posts for Facebook, when your target segment may well be hanging out on Twitter, YouTube or Instagram. This takes time and thought but it beats searching around for any vaguely relevant content to put on your socials because it's been a while and you just need to post.
2. Content calendars
A content calendar is a great way to start identifying when you want to communicate, number of posts a day/week and what type of content you are going to put on which days. However, be prepared to be flexible, there need to analyse what is working for you and there may be something trending that you need to get on the back of.
There are social media publishing tools, that will help you to promote your content across all of your social channels.
3. Stay relevant and up to date
You need to be seeing what else is going on in the social feeds, what are the new trends for social communications and try and build some of those into your strategy. There are always new innovative ways to communicate to your channels, so stay on top of news and trends.
You need to make sure that your content is focussed on your audience segments and types, but with the balance of not being too focussed on one niche. Go after a small segment too heavily, without appealing to your mass audience and you risk unfollows and people unliking your page all together. Have a think about what is relevant to them, in relation to your product or service and how it will encourage them to do something with it. See out post on know your customer for more help on this.
5. Make it relevant
Choose subject types that are relevant and topical that link you what you do, or even something about being a small business owner and your journey. People like back stories. Think about what hashtags you need to use to support your posts. Have a look at the latest trending or search by the hashtags you are considering using. This will give you an idea of what content is already out there and whether it fits with what you want to write about. Don't just post a picture of a cat/dog/chinzilla because you like them but if it's your resident pet, who happens to be a feature or personality of your store/coffee shop/business, that people will see when you visit them, then go ahead.
6. Say it with impact
Whatever you are writing about, you need to make it engaging for your reader. Think of snappy one-liners, quick attention grabbing headlines, smart content that people want to know about. Make sure you include the details that they need or will want to know. Have you remember a call to action, that will encourage them to do something with your posts?
7. Support your posts with great imagery
There are some great free design software packages out there such as Canva and Crello without you needing to buy into the bigger graphic design packages. As you are doing this for web, and not for print, the image resolution does not need to be as high. Therefore you can easily get what you need through using an online design package. Some even contain some great royalty free stock imagery that you can use for your designs. Not everyone has a creative eye though, so make sure you ask trusted people for their honest opinion.
8. Keep it regular
There are so many things going on within the social channels, not to mention real life getting in the way! However once you've grabbed the audience's attention, you want to keep them coming back for more and keep you in their timeline. However don't just throw any old content out there. It really has to be relevant and engaging and ultimately get them to do something. This is where the "so what?" really kicks in.
9. Be prepared to spend...a little
Set aside a small budget. We're not talking hundreds here, but think about promoting some of your key posts or something special. These promoted posts will help to grow your organic traffic too. You don't want to do this until you have enough posts on there, enough engagement from your audience and you know you're going to be communicating to them regularly. You want to make sure your target your ads too as this increases your chances of people interacting with your post.
You must look at the results. What is working and what isn't? Do you have one channel that is more engaged that another? Make sure you identify your markers for success before you start out. Have you got tracking in place to determine whether those people who followed your social media posts visited your website? Did you get them to engage with your posts? Were there any clear favourites? What are your like/follows looking like? Obviously this is something that you track and monitor over time. Put together a good tracking document, that will enable you to review results over a time period.
Don’t give up
There are some great ways to engage your audience and get them coming back to your social pages and wanting to know what is going on. You’ve got a great proposition, you’ve poured time and energy into your business, you’ve researched the marketplace and you know you have something that your customers want/need. Get your social media strategy right and your content will be shared for you, driving your SEO rankings up as well as visits to your website. You need to be ready to put hard work into it at first, to generate the interest and get the followers.
Keep an eye on our blog for more details and contact us for a free one-hour consultation to see how we can help.