Why Being Social Isn’t Enough: How To Enhance Your Social Media Marketing
As the world of social media becomes increasingly crowded, standing out as a brand couldn’t be more important. But it doesn’t always come easy. The best social marketing strategies out there are dynamic, active, and adapted to the fast-paced change that characterizes the world of the social networks. So what are some actionable tips and tricks brands can adopt to help them optimize their social media reach?
Delve into your analytics
You need to spend time analyzing your social media efforts. A purely reactive and scattergun approach will leave your brand behind with the other amateurs. Analytics will help you evaluate social media efforts and budgets more effectively — and most of the best tools are free.
Taking full advantage of the free in-built analytics a lot of social media platforms have to offer is a great start. Facebook and Instagram contain free tools which businesses can access to monitor follower demographics and behaviors. They’re also a great way to assess the performance of individual posts and create custom audiences. Remember that vanity metrics like follow numbers should not take precedence over those all-important engagement metrics.
Using analytics can similarly help with the comparison of certain time periods or years with one another, enabling companies to assess their performance and presence over long periods of time. Use analytics as a benchmark when doing your annual content planning — invest more into content when it’s likely to have more traction.
These tools are simple, free and easy to use and should be the first port of call for companies wishing to strengthen their social media presence online. Companies looking for more custom solutions may find investing in social media dashboards and analytics platforms allows them to get even more granular with their data.
Track your efforts
The next logical step from data analysis is tracking and evaluation. Social media marketing, especially amongst SME business leaders, often struggles to gain traction and credibility. Why? Many managers fear that social media is merely a vanity exercise — this is where accurate tracking can help businesses and brands take their social media efforts more seriously.
- Link tracking is one of the easiest ways to monitor social media ROI in real-time — hooking up link tracking and social media is a powerful way to track actions and conversions off the back off individual posts and campaigns.
- Selling through an online store? It’s easy to hook up your sales figures with social media efforts using an ecommerce dashboard. Look for a store with advanced marketing capabilities to help you hit the ground running. The more you sell using social media, the more you will be able to invest in your social efforts.
Schedule with a proper editorial calendar
Editorial planning goes hand in hand with the analysis of user behavior. Editorial planning shouldn’t just be a chance for the team ‘to have ideas’ — you need to ensure that keyword research, audience insights, and competitive analysis form the firm basis of your annual social media content calendar.
Scheduling will help you implement your content plan in real-time. Knowing when the maximum amount of people are online to see your post, then scheduling a post exactly at that time can instantaneously triple its reach and be the difference between a post going viral or a post having relatively 0 impact. Social media management tools Jarvis makes this kind of scheduling centralized and easy.
Softer social selling wins fans
But perhaps the most important thing to remember if you’re looking to enhance your online clout is that social media isn’t the place for a hard sell. Having a human presence brings companies into contact with their audience.
A good example is the outdoor clothing company Patagonia. Despite their 3.1 million followers, most of the company’s posts don’t even contain Patagonia products or clothing. The idea is to expand upon the brand in a way that makes it feel a lot more human - like just another friend posting about their day.
Work with the tide, not against it
Central to the social selling approach is making sure to also interact with other companies and social influencers.
Always bear in mind that this could lead to exciting and unexpected opportunities in the future — we’re not talking just sales here, but collaborations and the opening up of new marketing avenues.
Forging new relationships is the bread and butter of social media usage, after all.
Social media is a daunting prospect for many business owners, but as long as you don’t forget your human side — you will be fine. Just combine your passion for your brand and business with a willingness to delve into data.
How To Track Social Media ROI In 2018
Victoria Greene is a branding consultant and freelance writer. On her blog, VictoriaEcommerce, she shares tips on ecommerce and how writers can hone their craft. She is passionate about using her experience to help other businesses grow their brands online through great content, both on social media and beyond.