Hardly anyone doubts the power of social media today. It is no longer an extra tool that merely assists in promoting a business. For many incredibly successful brands, social media platforms are the main channel of promotion and communication with customers.
Sure, how much perfectly curated social media pages matter depends on the type of the business and target audience. But for most, it is absolutely achievable to grow a business immensely using social media. Follow these tips to make sure that your brand makes the most out of its social media potential.
Know your target audience
The number one step that any entrepreneur needs to take to maximize the effectiveness of their social media strategy is to conduct in-depth market research of their potential customer. It is essential to know who the target audience is, what they need, and how they approach buying. Personalization is the bullet-proof way to improve engagement.
Say you own a business that caters to students who are overwhelmed with college assignments and want to improve their grades. Creating generic content promoting professional paper writers on PaperWriter will not be enough. Instead, everything about your social media pages will have to be college-related and interesting to students specifically.
There are a lot of things that business owner needs to know about their customer to make their social media content relevant and engaging. But the key ones are their location, demographics (How old they are? What do they do? What is their education level? What is their family status? And so on), and interests. So good market research is never a wasted investment.
Build your brand
The next step in growing a business on social media is branding. Only a business with a clear brand image can generate loyalty. This is especially important if the customers are mainly from the millennial generation. Research suggests that they are mostly attracted to brands with recognizable faces. So follow these steps to build your brand:
- Use market research findings for the key stuff. This implies the name, logo, bio, and visual branding. Once again, getting to know the customer using focus groups and surveys beforehand helps.
- Develop a clear and recognizable voice. The brand’s voice (or persona) refers to what the captions say, what tone of voice they use, and how SMM managers and customer support representatives communicate with customers.
- Adjust the brand’s voice to the social media platform. All the elements that make up the brand’s persona should vary depending on the platform. For example, the voice that brands use on Facebook is usually more formal compared to TikTok.
- Track customers’ reactions to your branding choices. Customer research never really ends. So pay attention to how engagement rates and overall response change after every branding-related change.
One more thing. While it is perfectly okay to change branding from time to time, radical changes rarely bode well for building customer loyalty.
Work on search engine ranking
In the past, most people Googling a brand would head to its website first. But it is no longer the case, especially for businesses with a younger target audience. Now, a customer is more likely to go straight to the brand’s Instagram or Facebook page.
The number one effective strategy to improve the search engine ranking of a brand’s social media page is by growing the number of followers and maximizing their engagement. SMM managers know that high follower numbers mean nothing unless followers are active.
So the best way to make sure that a brand’s social media page appears high in the search results is to do everything to increase comments, shares, responses to stories, and whatnot. Contests, giveaways, surveys in stories, and posts with direct questions to the followers all work well.
Focus on leads
Lead generation is what most businesses use social media for in the first place. Leads refer to potential customers. They are not guaranteed good sales, but the ultimate purpose is to translate every lead into a real customer. The rule of thumb is, that the higher the quality of the leads, the better the business is doing.
Experts recommend various strategies to increase leads, from promoting gated content to adding a call to action in almost every post and everything in-between. But some of the basic ways to get leads using social media are:
- Including links in the content (as long as the social media platform allows this).
- Organizing contests among followers.
- Encouraging and sharing satisfied customers’ stories about the brand.
- Investing in exceptional customer support and, ideally, chat tools.
Business owners do not have to use all lead generation strategies simultaneously. Choosing at least a couple of on-brand ones and focusing on the works as well.
Build strong relationships with customers
Finally, no matter how well-thought-out a brand’s social media strategy is, it is not enough to build loyalty. To support a business, customers need to trust it and be satisfied with every step of the buying process.
This implies that, first of all, the quality of content must be exceptional. An occasional clickbait is not a big deal, but try to make sure that 90% of the posts are genuinely helpful and transparent. People do not appreciate being deceived. They can easily get frustrated with a brand that tries to lure them into reading, commenting, and buying something they do not want.
Also, as discussed, customer support can never be too good. There are a lot of acceptable ways to save a little on a brand’s social media strategy, but this is not one of them. If a customer has to wait for hours to have their message answered, they will likely buy from a competitor. So spend as much as possible on quality customer support. And make sure to respond to customers’ feedback.
In a nutshell
In 2022, social media can easily be the foundation of a brand’s marketing strategy. Social media are more relevant and functional than traditional websites. And they are much better for maximizing follower engagement and building strong relationships with customers.
But for a business owner to capitalize on the power of social media, they have to know their audience, have clear branding, increase leads and search engine ranking, and most importantly, stay in touch with their customers non-stop.