Social Media is an excellent medium for brand awareness and customer or prospect acquisition.
However, as beneficial as it can be, social media marketing can be very challenging, especially for small and mid-sized businesses.
We have shared 7 beginner tips you can use to hone your social media marketing skills.
Let’s dive straight into them.
1. Make a commitment
Yes, you’ve got that right. One of the factors determining success is commitment.
Commitment is the FIRST step required for a successful strategy to take place.
As a wise man once said, “Once you have a commitment, you need the discipline and hard work to get you there”.
Aside from that, remember you’re in a pool of sharks ( big brands ). So without commitment, you have no chance of facing them with their well-thought-out strategies.
What to commit in?
You can start by creating a strategy with realistic objectives and goals. Of course, the first step to take for that initiative is deciding what exactly are you using social media for. Be it brand awareness, sales, or something in between, a marketing plan will help you a lot in the long run.
A great way to start off with the plan is seeking out on other companies plans. It doesn’t hurt to ask what plan is working and not working from your peers. Aside from peers, competitors can be a great source for your plan too. In a sense, your competitors ARE your peers.
Remember to not only look for their successful strategies. Look at their failures as well, so you can avoid committing the mistakes they made.
2. Set Goals
This was mentioned briefly before. When creating a plan, everything starts and ends with goals. Hence setting important goals based on desired outcomes is a very wise move you should make.
Aligning your marketing strategies with goals helps you ensure you stay on track towards the path of success. This is why it’s also important for you to set very specific goals and objectives. Since the more specific you get, the easier it is for you to align with your goals.
So as an example, let’s say your desired outcome or objective is to drive brand awareness. The specific goal in this could be defining the metrics you use for brand awareness.
Are you going to account website engagement to the posts you share?
Or are you going to factor the number of likes you receive in each post?
Specific goals based on specific objectives help you understand whether your social media strategy is working or not.
Last but not least, if you ever face failure, confusion or feel lost, your plans and goals will help you revamp your thought process.
3. Share Who You Are.
Sharing content is a good thing. However, equally important is sharing what lies behind that content. What do we mean by that?
If you have a look at the top brands, they always have a separate campaign for sharing their brand image in front of their audience base.
Remember that social media is about connection. ‘Connection’ exists in different types. As you may already know, the most powerful form of connection is the one that is experienced on a human level.
This is exactly what drives engagement.
You have to define what makes you provide value to your customers. How you stand out amongst other competitors. How exactly are you unique as a company.
Spend some separate time jotting down what exactly is it that you stand for. After that, think about what will make your audience click the share button? Why would they want to follow you?
In a nutshell, remember not to only share content relevant to your product. Write content that will generally benefit your audience .
4. Set Some Time Aside For Social Media
In tactic 1 we mentioned how one should stay committed to social media. However, commitment doesn’t mean that you outsource your tasks to your team and only discuss a few minutes of social media with them.
Remember your brand vision is YOUR vision. Your team can only understand the vision to the extent of THEIR thought, not yours.
Which is why it is important to create high-quality content that aligns with your vision.
High-quality content that drives engagement is what leads to growth. For that, you need to have a creative mindset. Which is why you should take out at least 20 minutes of your time for social media. Don’t forget to select a period of the day at which your creative juices are flowing the most.
When is that time?
It could be Monday morning, perhaps Friday morning. That’s up to you to decide by testing.
When you produce engaging content, people will comment, share and present their queries. Which brings us to Tactic #5.
5. Listen And Respond To Your Audience.
One of the greatest benefits of social media is the ability to communicate, one-one, with potential and current customers. When you’re first starting out especially if you’re a small business, it is vital to get feedback.
Aside from feedback, your audience’s thoughts will give you plenty of material for future content. Check out the type of questions that are being asked on social media.
Can you create a short video about it?
Can you create a blog post about it?
Taking out time for listening to your audience will give you a greater insight into your product. And last but not least, it will build a loyal customer base that you can lean into later down the line.
6. Focus Your Efforts
It’s better to initially channel Your energy on one social media network than to spread it thinly across many. By focusing your efforts on one social media platform as opposed to all of them at once, you’ll be honing your skills whilst learning the nuances of that channel.
It is wise to understand the dynamics of one specific channel before branching out to others. The biggest misconception for small businesses and entrepreneurs is the amount of time it actually takes to be successful on a social media channel. Many treat it as a ‘ secondary ‘ marketing medium and don’t invest much effort.
The reality is, it takes a lot of time, effort and content to drive great results. So by focusing your efforts on one channel, you increase your likelihood of success tenfold or more.
7. Create A Social Media Calendar
Be it the next few months or perhaps a year, having a comprehensive overview of your social media posting is irreplaceable for brands and businesses looking for success.
A great social media strategy means posting consistently. It’s also a good rule of thumb to keep track of major company events and product releases.
What better way to do that than to hold yourself accountable through a content calendar?
Your content calendar can be an Excel spreadsheet or even a Google Doc. It doesn’t matter if you design it yourself or use a calendar service. Simply create a map and jot down an event on your social media calendar. Then, create a mini-marketing plan for that event. All left after that would be the execution of your plan in accordance with the calendar you set.
If you follow the above laid out tactics with great determination, you’re all set to follow a great social media marketing strategy.