Have a New Year’s resolution to better your business? Stepping up your social media game is a great place to start.
2017’s customers will look for you online first, because social media is the new word-of-mouth. Your audience is communicating in new ways, but this is good news! Social media avenues let you stay in front of your customers, and have become the ultimate branding tool. Use your profiles to construct the image of your business that you would like the world to see, and post content that your followers will be interested in.
Are your social media links on your website? In your email newsletters? Social media is all about sharing, referencing, and connecting, so make it easy for your audience to find you. Tag every company that you mention in posts, and use popular hashtags that are relevant to your topic. Most of all, make sure that your social handles are on everything you create, even in-house fliers!
You don’t have to spend $30 on a ticket to every monthly networking meeting to get the benefits (although they are fun!). Network online by sharing social content from others in your industry and writing blogs that will be valuable to your readers. As you establish your knowledge in your specific area, you will begin to be perceived as an industry thought leader.
Try Out Video
If a picture is worth 1000 words, then a video is worth 1000 pictures as far as social media goes. Analytics reports confirm that video is the most impactful way to reach your audience, driving more engagement than any other type of media. Try uploading animated shorts, client testimonials, commercials, or company updates from the office. You don’t have to get too high-tech, most mobile phones record web-quality video.
Stick to 70-20-10
Don’t make every social media post a sales pitch, or your followers will tune you out- and eventually unfollow you! Social media is about being part of the conversation and getting involved with your audience. Sales will come naturally as you build customer retention and loyalty, so focus on that instead. Follow our tried and true pattern of 70% original value-added content, 20% shared content from reputable sources and 10% your own promotional material.
The most important thing is to stay in front of your audience. These days, it can take a series of messages to successfully reach your following. We live on social media, constantly absorbing content from all different sources. It’s impossible to see it all, so most social networks have abandoned chronological streams. Instead, they display content based on what their users want to see. As a business, this means that you need to provide interesting, engaging content, and your posts will be displayed more often.
To the same note, it never hurts to put a little financial backing behind a great post. If you have big company news, a flash sale, or anything else you really want to get out there to the world, consider boosting that post on a social network. The cost is relatively cheap, and ensures that your content will not only be displayed to all of your followers, but friends of your followers and other people in your area.
Measure by Engagement
Social media often cannot be measured by means of a direct ROI. It’s hard to say which social elements specifically led to someone making a purchase or contacting your business. The important thing is to be available for your customers online and provide information and resources for them. Get an accurate idea of how you are performing with this by measuring engagement. The more followers you have and the more people interacting with your business online, the more loyal customers you will earn.