What is the Best Strategy for Social Media Marketing for Beginners?

 

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Are you a beginner in the world of social media marketing? Wondering where to start and how to leverage social media for your business needs?

With new platforms, tools and technologies appearing on the social media landscape every day, it can feel overwhelming. While, there is no one way to utilize social media channels, here is a 10-step approach, which can help you get started.

  1. Define Your Goals: Think about your goal. Ask yourself if your goal is to create brand awareness or brand education, or is it building your thought leadership?  Identifying your goals is the key to creating a successful social media strategy.
  2. Identify Appropriate Social Media Channels: Seriously, you don’t have to be on every social media channel. Instead, make a smart choice, and choose the ones that best suit your goals, business, and industry. Consider analyzing your industry and competitors to understand where your audience is and which channels are critical for your business.
  3. Develop KPIs: Think about how you would measure the success of your campaigns. Some metrics that you can look at include follower growth, fans, impressions, engagements, reach, page views, retweets, likes, video views, etc.
  4. Create a Content Calendar: Keep it simple. Utilize Google Sheets, or even Excel to create and maintain a calendar. The idea is to stay organized and ensure a regular flow of content and map your social media content strategy to your overall business objectives. As your team grows, you can invest in more sophisticated content planning tools such as Airtable and DivvyHQ
  5. Sign Up For Social Media Management Tools: Social media management tools such as Hootsuite, SproutSocial, Buffer, Zoho Social can help you automate the scheduling, reviewing and approval process for you. If you are on a budget, check out The 7 Best Free Social Media Management Tools in 2019.
  6. Think About Graphics: There is a lot of research out there that shows how important graphics are to build and engage your audience. The good thing is there are tools like Canva that allow you to create excellent graphics for free.
  7. Video is The King: Add videos to your social media strategy. Utilize features such as LinkedIn Live or native videos, Facebook Live videos, or IGTV on Instagram. You can also explore tools like Adobe Spark Post that allow you to convert a photo into video, and are reasonably intuitive.
  8. Create Ephemeral Content: Stories are everywhere and a great way to engage with your audience. You can utilize stories to create buzz around a product launch or to provide a sneak peek of an event or for recruiting purposes. The possibilities are endless.
  9. Make Content Shareable: Add social media buttons to your website to make sharing your content fast and easy for your visitors.
  10. Incorporate Social Listening: Social listening is becoming increasingly for brands big and small to stay on top of their customers’ pulse. Most social media management tools listed above offer listening capabilities that help you capture what your audience is saying about your brand and even your competitors.  Read my blog discussing the importance of social listening here.

What are some of the other strategies that you think can help beginners get started? Please share in the comments section.

Why is Social Listenting Important For Your Brand?

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In the world of social media conversations are extremely important, but what is even more important is “listening” to those conversations, and finding out how people (your audience) think about your brand, your industry, and your competitors online. Simply put this is “social listening.”

Sprout Social defines social listening as “the process of tracking conversations around specific topics, keywords, phrases, brands or industries, and leveraging your insights to discover opportunities or create content for those audiences.”

What makes social listening crucial is the limited attention span of your audience. You want to know what content/ product resonates with your audience or what are their pain points, and plug those insights into your overall marketing or business development strategy.

How you can use social listening and monitoring in your marketing strategy?

Social listening and monitoring can be utilized in many different ways depending on your industry and specific company goals. Here is a quick list of goals that social listening can help fulfill.

  • Finding actionable insights and tracking the overall health of their brand
  • Creating customized content for your audience
  • Identifying key influencers/brand advocates in their space
  • Finding opportunities to enhance customer experience,
  • Staying on top of trending trends in their industry
  • Understanding how your brand is being perceived in comparison with your competitors

How social listening and monitoring differ and complement each other?

The basic difference between social listening and monitoring is that while the former looks at the future, the later looks at the past.

Social Listening is more about studying the bigger picture by tracking the overall trends surrounding your brand, competitors, products or industry at large. It is about being strategic and actively utilizing insights to better engage with your audience.

In its article, Hootsuite notes “The social listening part is more active and strategic. It involves analyzing the data for actionable insights—everything from engaging a happy customer to shifting your overall brand positioning strategy. Social listening uses the data you gather to make your social marketing better.”

However, social media monitoring and social media listening often go hand in hand. For example, if you gathered an aggregate of mentions or hashtags that people are using to talk about your brand over a period of time, and noticed a trend or pain point to create customized content for your audience, then you have transitioned into social listening from social monitoring.

 

 

How Starts-Ups Can Use Instagram’s IGTV?

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By now you must have heard of IGTV—Instagram’s newly launched feature that now allows you to create long-form, full-screen vertical videos. Your video on IGTV can be 60 minutes long!

Many big brands quickly embraced this new feature. Here is an interesting article discussing how big brands are utilizing IGTV.

Much like the bigger brands, small business owners and start-ups can create wonders with this new feature. Here’s how start-ups can use IGTV:

Tell Your Story: If you are a start-up that has been in business for a few years, you can tell your brand story with IGTV. Perhaps, on a milestone anniversary of your business, film a video showing the journey of your brand and thanking customers for their loyalty. This will show customer appreciation and encourage engagement with new clients, validate your legacy and showcase the evolution of your brand.

Flaunt Your Company Culture: If you are going on a team outing, company retreat, or engaging in a community service activity, flaunt it! You can film a 2-5 minute video showing all the fun you did at this outing or film a video showing how your employees spent a day volunteering. This can be a great way of building brand image, attracting new customers, and even new talent to your company. After all, company culture is key to attracting and retaining talent.

Behind The Scenes: Take your customers on a workplace tour and show them who you are and what you do. This will let your customers see the human side of your business and may encourage engagement, and potentially lead to new business opportunities.

How-to-Videos: Given you can make an hour-long video on IGTV, you can create product demos or how-to-tutorials providing your customers step-by-step instructions on how to use your products. It is likely your customers will be more willing to watch a video than read a product guide.

Success Stories: Lastly, let your customers sing your praises. Film a customer success story with IGTV to show how you helped them in achieving their goals.

The possibilities with IGTV are endless. In nutshell, start-ups can use IGTV for brand awareness, brand building, customer engagement and much more.

As you dig into this feature, here are a few more articles that might be worth a read!

https://www.zesty.io/en-us/mindshare/marketing-trends/instagram-tv-and-what-it-means-for-marketing/

https://www.techrepublic.com/article/instagram-igtv-3-ways-businesses-can-use-the-new-service/

https://www.socialinsider.io/blog/how-brands-are-using-igtv/#igtvandbrands

How to Create Effective Tweets?

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 I find the brevity of character space on Twitter exciting. However, creating engaging Tweets can be daunting. Here are a few tips to create tweets that can help you engage and connect with your audience. 

  •  Have Awesome Content: No matter how cliched, but content really is the king. Before you post your tweet, think about your audience and what would resonate with them. It might be a good idea to utilize a social listening tool and monitor what keywords and hashtags your audience is associating with your brand. Most social media management tools such as Sprout Social offer listening capabilities. Read my blog on social listening here.
  • Have Great Visuals: The most retweeted content contains photos and videos. Visuals speak a powerful language so add some inspiring, funny and newsworthy images, Gifs or videos. Resize photos to optimize for Twitter. Landscape by Sprout Social is a great tool that lets you resize for a profile photo, header photo, as well as, in-stream tall and in-stream wide images. There are other tools such as Canva and Stencil that can help you create great templates and designs for your Tweets and social media channels in general.
  • Set the Clock: Most activity on Twitter happens in real-time. Therefore, it is important to post time-sensitive tweets, particularly in events of breaking news. Think about how an upcoming NFL game or Super Bowl or Oscars is relevant to your business and engage in a meaningful conversation with your audience.
  • Use Hashtags: Hashtags (#) are a great way of increasing the visibility of your Tweets in Twitter search results. A Twitter hashtag ties different conversations on the same topic from different users into one stream. However, be careful not to overuse hashtags and beware of using irrelevant hashtags. Here are a few guidelines that Twitter provides on how to use hashtags.
  • Engage with your Audience: Regularly monitor your feed, and reply to queries or grievances of your audience. Again, utilize a social media management tool that can help you track what your audiences are saying about your brand.

I found this video a few years ago. If you still new to Twitter, this might be useful. Check it out here.

Now Go Ahead and TWEET.

 

Seeking Knowledge About Facebook Marketing? You Need To Read This Article! — Marketing Secrets

There are no miracle methods you will gather a profitable following on Facebook. TIP! You will win kudos from your customers when you take the time to reply to their wall comments or questions. Monitor your wall daily and make sure to respond to people within 12 hours. Facebook needs to be thought of as […]

via Seeking Knowledge About Facebook Marketing? You Need To Read This Article! — Marketing Secrets