Social media for business plays a huge role in the bigger picture of your overall digital marketing strategy. It’s another part of your puzzle so you can piece together the success of your business. Social platforms and social media strategy help you connect with your customers and in turn support you in getting leads and sales.
Social media for business may be the most cost-effective way to promote your business online, particularly if you’re a small business. To begin with, all it requires is some thought and time. To keep your audience hooked, consistently updating and publishing content that engages and adds value for your target audience is just one of the ways to be successful in social media.
If you have a social media budget, there are clever ways to use paid social media advertising. However, understanding the very basics and establishing a foundation to build your digital presence in the world of social is key to adding real value.
What gives your brand a personality and generally, what customers are responsive to, is your social media for business. Understand that every social media platform gives you reach to a different kind of audience. For example, Facebook is currently the biggest social network platform worldwide with 2.41 billion active users as of the second quarter of 2019, it’s the second favourite platform for consuming videos after YouTube. Instagram is rapidly growing in the number of monthly active users, it’s popular for posting pictures and videos alongside hashtags. It also attracts a younger audience, although there is an increase in the number of adults now using Instagram.
There is a lot to say about social media, but I think it is fair to say that brands need to take advantage of social platforms as they come at zero cost! Otherwise, it’s likely you could end up losing potential customers. Just remember, your customers are on social media, as are your competition, so stay ahead and remain competitive in the digital marketplace.
Social media continues to be a powerful tool for brand awareness. Nowadays, with everyone on social media, in one place, this gives any business an opportunity to be seen and heard. Of course, it makes sense. According to Statista, reports shows that social media for business is one of the most popular online activities, in 2018 there were approximately 2.65 billion people using social media worldwide and this is expected to increase to 3.1 billion by 2021.
Good brand awareness joins the dots to brand loyalty, if you truly understand and connect with your target audience. Think about some of the brands you connect with, which brand gives you that warm fuzzy feeling and creates emotions that resonate with you? Or is there a brand you love that has a strong reputation?
There are some brands that are recognised so well, sometimes you don’t even need to know their name. This fact makes social media for business a MUST. Think about McDonald’s; their slogan is ‘I’m lovin it’, and Ronald McDonald represents them as their mascot. If we hear their slogan song or see Ronald on a poster, we automatically associate them with McDonald’s. The same goes for L’Oréal and their slogan ‘because you’re worth it’. When your brand increases its awareness and loyalty; expect to gain trust, support and brand ambassadors.
With the variety of social media platforms, you can experiment to see what works well for your business. Create value consistently through engaging and creative content and give your brand a personality. Most importantly, have a brand strategy, define what makes your business unique and consider the experience you want to provide to your customers. With your brand strategy in place, social media will help elevate your brand awareness to where it should be.
Once you’ve established your brand on social media for business pages, your audience will always be reading or watching your company for interesting and educating content which they’re willing to share with their own networks. When your audience ask questions for customer support on social media, this is also customer engagement! Remember, they want to be heard and feel connected and many companies will use social media for this form of engagement, whilst developing meaningful relationships at the same time. Listen to what your followers and customers say, and this will give you the ability to learn about what they need.
Many companies use social media for business to share user-generated stories to reach out to their audience, this is a great technique to create new customers and followers by emotionally connecting with them. When you learn your audience, social media can be a great platform to leverage customer engagement with your brand.
Whilst SEO ranking doesn’t impact your ranking on social media for business directly, it has an effect indirectly. Your content and link-building efforts will attract relevant traffic. One way to do this is through demand, based on search. Find out what your audience are searching for and tailor your content. The more you engage with your audience, the more likely they will share your content, resulting in an increase in your visibility. In some cases, social media may have more of a presence than a website.
For example, some of the most famous YouTubers have created such a strong brand identity, that people will just search for their names on Google which leads to an increase in their brand ranking.
Collaborating with social media influencers can also help you drive new traffic back to your website whilst increasing your following on social media too. When you collaborate with influencers and they appreciate your content, they are more likely to link back to your social media / website.
It’s important to remember when creating your content, you are optimising it for the keywords you’re ranking for (or tailoring content based on the demand from your audience). Promoting your keywords on social media allows you to have those high-quality links back to your site, improving your SEO.
…also known as Simi, lives and works in the UK. Her current role lies within Information Systems / Business Process Improvement, where she supports her company in communications and the Microsoft Office 365 journey.