As a startup or small business owner, you know there’s a lot to accomplish with limited resources and limited time. Traditional marketing can be a drain on both. Social media marketing, on the other hand, is pretty low-cost and gives you a direct line to current and prospective customers.
So, let’s look at some of the top social media channels to promote and build your business.
First is Facebook. Facebook is the biggest social network on the web, both in terms of name recognition and total number of users. With nearly 2 billion active users, Facebook is a great option for connecting people from all over the world with your business.
With Facebook, you can post as much or as little as you want. Even better, you can geo-target posts to the right audience, and specifically target location, age and gender.
When it comes to analysing how your posts are doing, Facebook has a good range of options to measure this called ‘Facebook insights’ which will be mentioned and explained in our post next week.
Next, let’s look at Twitter. With Twitter, you can share short text updates (of 140 characters or fewer), along with videos, images, links, polls and more. Twitter averages about 328 million active users worldwide. Because of its wide reach, this platform is not only a great way to market your business, but also an effective channel for handling customer service.
Twitter has its own analytics tool that lets you see exactly how your tweets are doing month by month. As with Facebook, you can also target tweets to a specific audience.
The key to Twitter networking, is finding out which #Hashtags your fellow companies, and audience use. For example, maybe you are a small company in Lincolnshire, you can then join the #LincsHour chat every Monday evening. By using this hashtag, you will be able to connect and promote your brand to the relevant people. A good site to find these ‘hours’ is http://www.tweetreports.com/twitter-chat-schedule/
Next we should look at Instagram. Instagram is a visual social media platform based entirely on photo and video posts. The Facebook-owned network has more than 700 million active users, many of whom post about food, art, travel, fashion and similar subjects. Similar to Twitter, Instagram uses hashtags to promote your posts. For example, if you are a gym business, you could use ‘#Health, #Fitness, #HealthyFood, #Gym #GymGoals.’ This is just a small example, if you’re struggling for hashtag ideas, have a look at what similar companies do on their Instagram for some good tips and ideas.
When it comes to measuring the success of your posts – you will have to use Instagram Insights. After you’ve converted to a Business Profile on Instagram, you’ll get access to Instagram Insights.
Instagram Insights help you learn more about your followers and the people interacting with your business on Instagram. For example, you’ll find insights such as gender, age range and location. You can also see which posts and stories your audience sees and engages with the most.
If you are working in a B2B field, this is the social media network for you to focus on. Connecting with business professionals in any industry is easiest with LinkedIn as it allows you to target them by industry, job title, etc. As with all social media, LinkedIn prioritizes relationship building more than any other.
So, after looking at some social media channels, let’s look at what they can actually do for you in terms of benefits.
- Gain valuable customer insights
Social media generates a huge amount of data about your customers in real time. Every day there are over 500 million Tweets, 4.5 billion Likes on Facebook, and 95 million photos and videos uploaded to Instagram. Behind these staggering numbers is a wealth of information about your customers—who they are, what they like, and how they feel about your brand.
Through daily active engagement and social listening, you can gather relevant customer data and use that information to make smarter business decisions
- Increase brand awareness and loyalty
When you have a presence on social media, you make it easier for your customers to find and connect with you. And by connecting with your customers on social, you’re more likely to increase customer retention and brand loyalty. A study by The Social Habit shows that 53 percent of Americans who follow brands on social are more loyal to those brands.
On top of this, you are constantly building relationships and should be aware of this. Social media isn’t about blasting your company’s sales pitch on social, it’s a two-way channel where you have the opportunity to enrich relationships with your customers.
- Increase website traffic and search ranking
One of the biggest benefits of social media for business is using it to increase your website traffic. Not only does social media help you direct people to your website, but the more social media shares you receive, the higher your search ranking will be.
4.Find out what your competitors are doing
With social media monitoring you can gain key information about your competitors. This kind of intel will allow you to make strategic business decisions to stay ahead of them.
- Geotarget content
Geo-targeting is an effective way to send your message out to a specific audience based on their location. Social networks like Facebook and Twitter have tools that allow you to communicate the right kind of content to a specific audience.
To conclude, using social media is a must for a business or brand who wants to connect with its target market in 2017 and beyond. Every day, businesses are setting aside more of their budget to this new way of digital marketing. However, the perks of social media depends on how much or how little work you are willing to put in. You can spend hours creating a digital campaign plan for all of your social channels, or maybe you only want to do a couple of posts per week on each platform. The choice is up to you. There’s no one way to use social media, but for a company who wants to keep on top of, and in front of the developing marketing trends, then social media marketing should be a key aspect in your marketing plan.
Please do not hesitate to get into contact with drumBEAT Marketing. We can be reached at 01427 808870 and a member of our team will be happy to help.
You can read about how we help clients with their social media here