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Succeed at social media with these simple steps

 Article provided by Pine3 Marketing

The importance of social media in business is growing at warp speed. No matter what business you’re in, social media is a must. Every business today needs to leverage proper social media channels in the best possible way because that’s where your target audience is hanging out.

Give your business brand a social media touch and not only will you generate more business, but also connect with your customers on a higher level and create a better customer experience.

According to an infographic published by Ambassador, 71% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand to others if they have a positive experience with it on social media.

Here are some more social media statistics that prove the importance of social media in business:

  • The number of social media-using adults has gone from 7% in 2005 to 69% only ten years later
  • Social media use on mobile devices is seeing a 30% growth every year
  • 2 million business today use Facebook advertising for promoting their products and services

Here are eight simple steps to help your business succeed using social media as a tool

Set your social media goals and align them with KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)

First you have to decide what you want to achieve and what will define your success on social media. List your objectives, as with any marketing initiative, your objectives should be as specific as possible. Once you have clear objectives defined, you need to align them with tangible KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) This will help you measure the success of each objective.

For example, let’s say your objective is to create awareness about your outlet in the city among the right target audience, and your key performance indicators is Reach and Impressions. Your six months target is to reach 350.000 people.

Once you have set your goals you can measure the success of your objective and do adjustments if you are not achieving your target.

Know your audience

You need to have your audience clearly defined, as understanding your target audience is the 101 for any business owner. Create marketing personas as well as social media personas to better understand your target market and how they engage on the different social media platforms. Use this information to choose your social media platforms and tailor your interactions.

Following these few steps will help you identify/define your target audience:

  • Look at current customer base: Keep a track of who your customers are, where do they come from, what language they speak, age group etc.
  • Do online surveys to learn more about your consumers: Find out more about your customers, ask them what they like, dislike, what type of content they prefer etc.
  • Check your competitors: Find out who is buying from your competitors and do the similar kind of study on your competitors’ customers.

Choose the right social media platforms

Based on your target audience and level of social media resources, choose the right social media platforms for your business. Here are the top platforms you must consider:

Facebook remains the “top dog globally”. Therefore, it’s the place to be.

Blogging should be at the centre of your social media since it’s an owned content marketing venue.

YouTube is also an important platform, as the number two search engine after Google as well as the number two social media site.

Instagram is useful for the visual perspective of your business.

Twitter continues to grow and provide a forum for short social conversation and sharing.

LinkedIn is top of the list for professional socializing.

Pinterest is where your organization show off its products and visual side.

Other options: Depending on your business focus, include Slideshare and Tumblr. Further consider venues such as Flickr and MySpace.

Create a social media schedule

Social media schedules or calendars are the best way to plan and organize upcoming content. The goal is to ensure that you’re participating regularly on social media without taking away from other areas of your business. Set an easy-to-follow daily, weekly and monthly schedule rather than have someone spend their entire day on social media.

Optimize social media content for search

One of the main goals of social media optimization is to increase awareness of your business using social media. This means making your content as shareable and search-friendly as possible by focusing both on industry best practices as well as what’s worked for you in the past.

Follow the social media conversation

This is a must-do for any business. It’s critical to know what your prospects, customers, competitors and the public are saying about your business, products and employees.

Promote your social media engagement

Don’t forget to market your social media pages to reach as many people as possible. Think in terms of leveraging your owned media such as:

Blog – Incorporate social sharing and commenting. Also drive engagement on other social media platforms with the use of related posts.

Website – Promote your social media content where appropriate. In addition to highlighting it on your home page, incorporate social media references on relevant product pages and resources.

Emails – Cross promote social media content and activities. This can be incorporated into your existing newsletters and promotions.

Customer service – Minimize waiting time on both your inbound phone calls and your outbound emails.

Offline marketing – Market your social media activity in your offline promotions such as television, print and direct mail as well as packaging and retail.

Measure results

Measuring results is not just to feel good, it’s important as it helps you optimize and repeat for better performance in the future. You need to observe or measure results to identify the following:

  • Types of posts that are working better for you
  • Category of the posts that are getting more engagement
  • The worst performing posts
  • Times posts are getting maximum engagements
  • The day/s your posts gets most of the engagements

We set some KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) in our previous step. Now is the time to measure the same and see if you are going in the right direction or not. And then it’s up to you to optimize and repeat.

Trying to succeed on social media may seem overwhelming and impossible. Just remember to remain consistent, listen to your followers, and produce great content.

If you need help with marketing on social media, feel free to contact us today.

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