With social media marketing, you have the opportunity to reach all the people who are connected to your business online and more people if you decide to run a targeted advertisement. Plus, it’s an excellent way to learn what your customers want from you, and what they don’t like about your product or service. And lastly, you can research what your ideal customer doesn’t like about another company within your industry, and use that information to improve your product or service. Here are some effective social media marketing ideas you can use in your business today.
Pick the right social media platforms
When it comes to social media marketing ideas for your business, the best thing you can do is use a variety of platforms. Different platforms are better than others depending on what industry you’re in, so it’s important to know which ones work best for your needs.
How to determine what platforms to use, ask yourself these questions about your business:
- Where does your customer spend most of their time online?
- How old is your customer?
- What other interests does your customer have outside of your product or service?
- What primary business goals do you hope to achieve by using social media?
- What type of content does your customers interact with most?
- What platforms do you currently use that you see are pulling in results?
Once you gain an understanding of who your customer is and how they behave online, you can better tailor your strategy to cater to what they are looking for. There are many reasons to use social media such as brand awareness, thought leadership, website traffic, recruiting and hiring, increase sales, and improve customer service. The options are endless, the key is being consistent and constantly looking for ways to improve your content. Engage with your customers and make them feel apart of your business.
Think like your customer
Think about what your customer needs from you when they come into your storefront. What questions do they ask? If you are getting similar questions about your products or services over and over again– make a post about it to help out other customers in the same boat. Your content can be very helpful to people who aren’t experts in their craft like you are as a business owner. Uncover those needs and package them in a nice post to provide guidance. When it comes to people buying something, they tend to go where they feel the most confident in a brand. If you can establish a relationship with your customer online, they will surely think about you when it comes to purchase. The goal of social media isn’t only to make immediate sales, but to foster a positive reputation to attract new and existing customers.
How do you think like a customer? Ask yourself these questions:
- What aspect of my products or services is difficult to understand that customer would appreciate knowing?
- What is your most popular item for sale, and what do people love about it?
- How long is the sales process when someone calls or visits your business? How can you speed that up with social media?
- Why do your customers choose you over the competitors?
- What can you do to improve your reputation in your industry or community?
If you have a hard time figuring out the answer to some of these questions, ask your customers! They’ll be happy you’re taking an interest in their wants and needs. The more insight you can gain on your customers, the better off your company will be in the long run.
Set a goal and stay on track
Setting a goal for your social media marketing is the first step in achieving success. Remember: the goals depict what the company’s purpose is and objectives are how you plan on achieving the goal. You have to break down your top business goals/objectives and how social media platforms can help you achieve the desired results. Once you have pinpointed the main goals, you need to strategize on what platform will perform best and align with those goals. For example, if you want more visibility on Pinterest, you should post consistently and re-pin items others have pinned. You should also pin from your own website or blog and include a description of what your business does when pinning. If you want more views on YouTube, create interesting videos that are relevant to your business or industry. For example, if you are in the food service industry, try making videos about cooking techniques or how-to videos about using different kitchen gadgets.
How to identify your business goals:
- Think about what short-term and long-term value you want to pull from utilizing social media platforms. For example, a short-term goal could be increasing awareness about a sale your business is having, hiring more people at your company, or creating a consistent posting schedule. Long-term goals stem from the short-term goals as they cater to their success. For example, if you promote the sale your business is having it will have a long-term goal of increasing revenue by the end of the year. If you hire more people, it can increase productivity and benefit a potential expansion. And, if you post on a consistent basis, you begin to connect to your customers more often meaning they have a higher likelihood of purchasing from you, and caring about your company vision.
- Clearly define what success means for your business. Many times we get caught up in our work, but we don’t have a strong outlook of where we are and where want to be. You need to work with your team to figure out your exact plan for your business, and that will uncover specific tasks/projects that need to be done in order to get you closer to the desired results. For example, if success means expanding into a new market, you need to figure out what market is best and if you have enough capital to get there. If success means making more online sales, then you need an ecommerce store and online presence to get you there.
- Obtain feedback form your team members about what issues they are seeing with the business. As a business owner, you may not notice the problems with your business– but your employees do. Ask them what the most common problems are, how they suggest to fix them, and maintain the lines of communication to ensure you are in the loop as the problems are resolved and new ones appear.
Do research before jumping in
When you are just getting started with marketing for your business, it can be hard to know where to start. But taking the time to do some research first is a good idea. You always want to find out where your customers spend the most time, and how your business can participate, add value, or collaborate. For example, if your business is selling coffee beans, you could join Facebook groups that are geared to coffee enthusiasts, or you could create a promotion with a store that if the customer buys one of their products, they get a discount on one of your items. Being where your customers are is the best way to connect with them, and understand what they are looking for better.
Questions to ask yourself when determining where your customers spend most of their time:
- What kind of audience does your business have?
- What social media platforms are they using?
- Do they like visuals or would they rather read posts?
- What are their values and hobbies?
- What kind of customer data can you pull from previous social media posts, ad campaigns, or blog posts? Determine which content performed the best, and why?
Create a posting schedule (and stick to it)
A consistent posting schedule is always the best way to ensure you never miss a beat and your customers have the opportunity to connect with your brand. It is easy to lose track of time in your busy work week, forget to post important information, or simply just not know what would make for a good post. The approach Mediable takes with clients is coming up with a month of posts a month in advance. The reason we do it so far ahead is so that the consistency is there and you can always add in extra posts if you have a promotion, a new product, or an event.
The best ways to maintain a posting schedule:
- Create a content calendar that outlines each day’s content for a month, and how that corresponds to your designated theme, business goal, or marketing strategy.
- Use scheduling tools like Facebook Business Manager (now known as Meta), Buffer, SocialPilot, or Zoho. You need to determine your budget and how beneficial a scheduling tool will help you stay consistent. Facebook Business Manager is actually free, so it’s a great place to start!
- Share a mixture of different types of content. You could share self-promoting post, share posts of other social accounts in your industry or related industry, share a blog post to showcase your thought leadership, or provide some sort of value to your customers (how-to’s, a guide, an infographic).
- Stay connected to your community both in-person and online. If you can get a sense of what is happening around you, you can better tailor your posts to respond to upcoming events, current industry news, and what your competition is doing.
Don’t be afraid of numbers and stats
Your business needs to analyze the data that is produced every time you post a story, a reel, or a post. As a business, you need to understand what is working and what is not. If you have high engagement rates, likes, and follows on a given day you should ask yourself why you did so well that day and correlate it to your activity online. Your marketing strategies should align with what works, but remember to always focus on providing value for your customers before caring too much about the numbers.
How to use data to create better online content:
- Find out what types of conversations are happening in your industry and how you can tap into them. By simply engaging, providing insight, or sharing something you wrote are great ways to join in the discussion.
- Use analytics to inspire fresh ideas that come from your past successful posts on social media or your blog.
- Pinpoint when your customers are most active online by basing it on the posts get the most engagement and what time you posted them.
- Is there a post that is performing well and would benefit if you paid to boost it?
- How many questions are you getting about a certain topic, service, or product? Address those questions by creating compelling content for the viewers who are asking for it.
Ask for help if you need it
Mediable is always available for marketing consultations to give you new and exciting ideas that work! Depending on where you are with your business, it is good to evaluate where you need help and pass the work onto experts in the field. It will free up time so you can focus on running your business, and you can benefit from being active online. Reach out for one free consultation today! Contact us.