In its infancy, social media was a nice-to-have addition to marketing and sales strategies. Today, social media platforms have become one of the most important marketing channels for businesses.
There are many social platforms, and taking advantage of them can give your business a huge marketing boost. However, social media can work against you if you come across as fake or inauthentic. The key is to build an active community focused on the customer and create a place where they can positively connect with your business.
If you’re not utilizing social media to grow your audience, you’re missing out on an opportunity to speak to current and potential customers. Follow these tips to refine your current social strategy and build your audience:
Analyze Your Social Channels
Before developing and implementing a new social media strategy, analyze the channels your business is currently using, underutilizing, or neglecting. If Facebook is your lone social channel, but there is more engagement in your niche on LinkedIn, examining where to allocate your marketing effects is the first step to social marketing success. Additionally, if you are active on a social platform and seeing average but not great engagement, you may consider refining your target audience.
Define Your Goals
Social media is not one-size-fits-all; your strategy will differ based on your business goals. Do you want to build and grow your audience? Educate your audience about new products and services? Gain more sales leads? Become an expert or influencer in your industry? Once you define your goals and their outcomes, research how each social platform works. Create some test posts to see when and where your content gets the most audience engagement. Use your findings to decide which channels will help you achieve your business goals and needs.
Identify Your Audience
Once you’ve defined your social goals, you need to identify your existing and potential target audience. Whether you rely on data analysis or a customer profile, determine who your target audience is and create content to speak to and engage them. Your customer profile includes the following characteristics: age, gender, location, and income. Keep this in mind when you’re creating posts. If you're trying to reach millennials, remember the youngest millennials turned 25 in 2021.
Create a Strong Presence
Another key component for building your social profiles is brand presence. Your profile pictures and images should definitively say, “This is who we are.” If they don’t, your audience may feel lost or uncertain about interacting with your business. In addition to visuals that speak to who you are, create a unified voice. Do you have a catchphrase? A unique product? A dedication to social causes? Whatever your voice is, make sure it is unified and consistent across all your social channels.
Create Engaging Content
When developing your social strategy, think about what types of content you want to create based upon your audience and chosen social platform. According to Hubspot, content with relevant images gets 94% more views than content without images, and visual content is 40 times more likely to be shared.
The great thing about content creation is once you create one post, you can repurpose it across multiple platforms. Some ways to repurpose content (depending on the social channel) include:
- Infographics: By taking text-heavy blogs and reworking them into visually appealing graphics, the content is easier to disseminate.
- Polls/question posts: Customers love giving their opinions and voting for their choice. Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn have poll and question post options.
- Contests: Need help with projects or initiatives? Ask your customers for their opinions in exchange for an entry into a gift card drawing.
Silence is deadly- especially in social media. Social profiles mean nothing if you're not using them, and not posting may make your business appear outdated. Consistent posting makes your audience feel like you’re keeping them in mind when implementing your social strategy. If you have no new content, repurpose past content or repost content from your customers to keep your audience engaged.
Link Your Social Accounts to Your Website
A simple way to boost your social visibility is by adding your social links to your website. Some customers browse your social pages to gauge how engaged you are, which would influence whether they choose your product or a competitor. Make sure the links are in a highly visible and accessible area on your website (i.e. header, footer, sidebar). Also, check the links periodically to ensure they are accurate and open your social profiles.
In social media, it’s quality, not quantity that counts. You could have thousands of followers, but if they aren’t engaging with you, social media loses its value. The value is in the 100 followers who regularly engage with your business and content. And even if you post consistently, if you don’t engage with your followers, you won’t build your audience. Build relationships by interacting with customers, replying to their questions, and being proactive in reaching out to them. Engagement is the most effective step in building a worthwhile audience.
Loyalty Health services the marketing needs of healthcare providers so that you can focus on what matters - serving your patients. We offer vital digital marketing in a simple, cost-effective one-stop spot. Call us today at 800-411-6022 or fill out our contact form to learn more or schedule a complimentary 20-minute consultation.