Social Media Marketing requires time, creativity and experience.
The benefits of effective social media are something unimaginable 20 years old. Some of these benefits being improvement in:
- Website traffic
- Brand awareness
- Lead generation
- Inbound links for SEO
- Customer service
Social media is not a one-shot approach that will generate results over night, as long as you have time on your side and you are patient, it will become a great asset to your marketing plan. Especially if you are a SME that is looking to improve sales and to have a direct way to communicate with your customers.
Below are five fundamentals when embarking on your social media journey.
1. Create a social media plan
Many owners think that social media means creating an account and simply sharing a couple of updates and leaving your social media to sit their unattended. Worst yet, they think this is the way to do it on multiple social media channels. And yet, still expect ground-breaking results. Just because you shared a few links doesn’t mean people will flock to your page. Social media isn’t an auto pilot kind of game. When owners don’t receive results or traction, they often choose to simply give up and claim that social media doesn’t work. The reality is that they didn’t establish a real or sufficient plan.
2. Outline specific goals and be realistic
Outlining your specific goals for stages in your social media is a good idea. This will include having realistic ideas in your head of where you wish to be after three, six and nine months. This is ideal to know how to manage your social media. For example, if you want 100 followers in 6 months, you’re going to be doing a whole lot less posting compared to wanting 300 followers. Now, we’re not saying you shouldn’t try and surpass your target. But knowing where you are and what’s achievable avoids unnecessary frustration. Can social media help generate 100 new visitors to your company’s website? Potentially, yes, if it is used correctly. Know where you want to be and aim accordingly.
3. Identify who will be running it
Who will be running the social media for the business? What impression do the company want to give off? These are both important questions in identifying your personality. Many a time, the owner themselves will be doing social media. This may not be the most cost-effective method, as takes time away from your work. Some businesses are hiring interns or consultants. But you can also ask a family member or friend.
If social media cannot be delivered, the results that you’re used to seeing may take a sudden patch of slowness. Compared to your set goals, this may lead you to lack in your targets. Making an investment in hiring additional workers is advisable but not ideal for those with smaller business. If you can’t hire help, make sure you balance your workload and your social media activities.
4. Allocate daily time for social media
Consistency is the ability to maintain a particular standard or repeat a particular task with minimal variation. We couldn’t have put it better ourselves (thanks, Dictionary). Yes, consistency is the name of the social media game and you must be consistent in order to see success. Time and frequency of your posts are crucial. There’s honestly no point in posting content at 4am when you’re trying to reach a UK audience. Post at peak times and see your posts excel. Keep your eye on trends and alerts that are of relevance to your business. This allows you to see what your customers are doing/discussing and allows you to adjust your posts to their interests. Interact regularly as having conversations with customers is necessary. Rule of thumb: Allocate an hour or two per day to your social media channels.
5. Start off small and build
Each channel takes its time to manage and jumping in at the deep end can add to a barrel full of confusion. Taking on too many channels will result to ineffective customer engagement, allowing potential customers to slip through your fingers. Social media marketing requires a strategy, a high level of focus and an amount of precision that would make an air pilot green with envy.
With these 5 handy tips we hope you excel in your pursuit for social media success!