Business owners & marketers recognize the power of social media as a tool to promote brands and boost revenues. But building social media presence is much more than publishing a few posts or clicking a few likes here and there. It requires a lot of time and effort, as well as a careful choice of effective tactics to deploy on the right channels.
However, the benefits are definitely worth it. Building a social media presence can help you improve your CX, enable you to stay in touch with existing customers and attract new ones, drive traffic to your site, and build brand authority.
We’ve compiled a list of 7 effective tactics to help you along the way.
1. Set a Clear Goal
Start by checking your social media presence at the moment. Ask yourself:
- Which social networks are you active at?
- Have any of them proven more valuable than others?
- Are your pages and profiles on social networks optimized?
- Where are you compared to your main competitors in terms of social media presence?
Once you get the answer to these questions, define what your goal is. For instance, are you looking to generate more leads, boost website traffic, reach new audiences, or something else? If you don’t have a clear goal, your social media presence strategy will yield poor results.
In order to be effective, your goals need to be SMART, i.e. specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. For instance, “Boost Twitter engagement by 15% in the following four months.” is a very clear and specific goal.
2. Define Who Your Audience Is
You can’t build an effective social media presence if you’re speaking to the wrong audience. Without a clearly identified audience, you’re just wasting money, efforts, and time.
The best approach is to create your ideal buyer personas, including the following information:
- Favorite social networks
- Brands they’re following on social networks (optional)
Who your target audience is will determine the social networks you’ll be using, the type of content you’ll be posting, the best times to post the content, etc.
3. Choose the Right Social Media Platforms
When choosing the best social media platforms for your business, think about your audience. If you want tangible results, it doesn’t matter which ones you personally prefer, but where your audience is present.
Marketing experts favor Facebook and Instagram ads because the targeting strategy on these two puts you in front of very specific segments of your audience.
With more than 2 billion active monthly users, Facebook continues to be the largest and most important social media marketing channel. The fact that potential customers go to Facebook first thing when looking for information related to all kinds of businesses makes it ideal for both lead generation and building a relationship with customers. Here are some guidelines to help you benefit from Facebook:
- ensure that your FB business page has enough information about your business
- provide directions to your location so they can find you easily
- provide your phone number and email so that users can contact you easily
- ensure that your business page is regularly updated and that new content is published frequently.
In 2016, Instagram introduces their Business Profiles. This gave businesses an opportunity to market their brands to specifically targeted audiences easily and without breaking the bank. Today, Instagram boasts 1 billion active monthly users, as well as 8 million business accounts. Want some more jaw-dropping Insta stats?
- 30% of users bought a product they discovered on Instagram
- 60% of users first heard about a product on Instagram
- 80% of users follow a business account on Instagram
- 7 out of 10 Insta hashtags are branded
- More than 65% of Insta business profiles visits are from users that don’t follow them
Let’s not forget Instagram Stories. Since they appeared in August 2017, Insta Stories has quickly become one of the most powerful online marketing tools. Today, more than 300 million people use Insta Stories daily and one in five business stories gets a DM.
Besides Facebook and Instagram, you can also check which of the following social networks is suitable for your business:
Research has shown that 86% of small and medium businesses prefer Twitter for issues related to customer service. This platform is great if your target audience is under 50, as well as for businesses in connection with trending topics, announcements, or fresh news.
As a photo-sharing platform, Pinterest is great for businesses like fashion, travel, weddings, art, i.e. businesses that share visually appealing content. Since users mainly use it for planning their purchases, this social network is ideal for driving sales.
As a business-networking platform, LinkedIn can be used by both B2C and B2B businesses to create authority and trust, as well as to engage the audience.
After a while, some of the platforms will prove to be more efficient than others when it comes to building your social media presence. Monitor your results and you’ll be able to make the necessary tweaks and changes to suit your strategy.
4. Create Content According to Your Audience’s Needs
The content you publish on social networks is essential for growing your audience and gaining new customers. So, if you want to stand out from the crowd, the first thing you need to focus on is creating your own content.
This content must be original, high-quality, and appeal to your target audience. That’s why analyzing your audience is crucial before you actually start producing the content. Ask yourself whether they like reading blogs or prefer visual content such as videos and infographics.
The type of content you share also depends on the social platform you’re using. Great visual content is hot right now, which allows you to take advantage of popular features like Instagram Stories or Facebook Live. Some of the most popular types of videos at the moment are testimonial video, explainer videos, how to’s, and product demonstrations.
5. Stay Active
Building social media presence means publishing content, as well as connecting and engaging with your audience on a regular basis.
Some of the best ways to engage with your target audience include:
- Commenting and liking posts
- Participating in discussions
- Answering users’ questions
- Posting useful and entertaining information
- Posting user-generated content
- Responding to criticism and complaints
- Responding to both negative and positive reviews
Showing that you really care for what your customers or followers have to say is the best way to build a trustworthy relationship with them.
6. Use Automation Tools to Remain Constant Presence
Building and maintaining social media presence requires patience, time, and hard work. Automation tools such as Buffer, Hootsuite, and BuzzSumo can make things a lot easier since they allow you to reduce the time you spend on social media.
However, that doesn’t mean abandoning your social media profiles and pages for good. You’ll still need to monitor the activity on a daily basis and respond to any comments or questions your users might have.
When it comes to how much content is optimal, that largely depends on the social network you’re using. For instance, Facebook and LinkedIn require one post a day, whereas for Pinterest and Twitter the rule of thumb is: the more, the better.
7. Measure Your Results
Measure the results to make sure you’re on the right track with your social media strategy. For example, if your goal was to boost website traffic, measure the referral traffic that comes from your social media pages and profiles.
This way, you’ll know if you need to make any changes or adjustments in the strategy. You’ll also find out which networks are working best for you and double your budget and efforts there.
Most social networks have their own analytics like Facebook Analytics and Page Insights or Google Analytics, but you can also use social media marketing tools like Sprout Social, Tailwind, Buffer, ViralWoot, and BuzzSumo.
Social networks are constantly changing and the number of users is growing day by day. You don’t have to be present on every single platform but it’s necessary that you have a clear goal of what you want to achieve, determine who your audience is, and select the best platforms for your business.
Building your presence on social media has many benefits for your business provided you maintain consistency and remain active.
If you don’t want to start building your online presence from scratch, consider buying an already established website along with social media profiles to make things faster and easier.