Social media marketing is the practice of advertising your products and services through online social networking mediums. If employed tactfully, it can be one of the best marketing techniques. According to an online survey conducted by Fast Company, over 90% of marketers utilize social media to promote their companies.
You can unlock the full potential of your business by jumping on the opportunities social media has to offer. It is the most interactive form of marketing where the nuances of advertising are demystified. Below we offer five of what we believe are the best social marketing practices to ensure business success.
1. Creating an Effective Marketing Strategy
A social media marketing strategy is a well-defined plan of how to go about promoting your business via social mediums. It is basically the foundation of your marketing campaign. A good execution methodology will be the basis of any marketers’ formulas. It should be uniform across all sectors related to business marketing.
Synchronization is the key word here. Any agreed upon plan should be adaptable. This means it can change accordingly with changing customer needs. Any successful social media marketer should know that trends develop and evolve regularly. They should therefore be able to come up with logistics to cater for these developments. This goes a long way in ensuring your audience always relates to the business.
An effective strategy involves several uniform parts. The major one is analysis of techniques. A marketer should always conduct research on their competition and evaluate their methodology accordingly. This practice allows you to stay ahead of the advertising pack. It is important to note that an excellent social media marketing strategy is useless if you do not commit and adhere to it. Consistency in your strategy is important, maintaining steady intervals of engagement with your audience.
2. Social Media Tracking
Social media tracking is the process through which the health of a social marketing plan is diagnosed. There is no way of knowing the effects of your strategy on your business if you cannot tell what is unfolding in your online mediums. This is a good way of reviewing your marketing metrics. Additionally, it helps in comparing your techniques to those of your competitors. With this knowledge a marketer can adjust or revamp their social media presence.
Social media tracking involves a detailed analysis of the activities taking place in your social media accounts. It should ideally be conducted on a regular basis like monthly or weekly. It constitutes checking the number of your followers, number of posts, total click onto your sites and number of page views.
On the secondary level it includes constantly checking the amount of likes, comments and shares. This can be an automated process and marketers should fully utilize online social media tracking tools.
3. Getting The Best Out of Online Tools
Without the use of relevant online tools, social media marketing will be a very cumbersome venture for marketing. Tools serve to simplify the logistics of social media marketing and save marketers precious time. Saved time can then be redirected to other sectors of the marketing campaign.
Tools will help you in optimization, social media tracking, marketing methodology analysis and strategy planning. The earlier mentioned social media marketing strategy creation can for instance be made easier by tools such as Google Excel Docs. It is an editorial calendar that is useful in the management and formulation of a successful marketing plan. Other such tools include Hoot suite, Buffer, Tweet Deck and Google Analytics. These tools can be applied across all your social advertising mediums (Optimization).
Other uses of tools include performance analytics, post scheduling, management and monitoring of social media feeds and auto responding.
4. Customer and Audience Relations
Highly successful social media marketers are ever keeping their audience and potential customers engaged. Regardless of the superiority of a business’s products and services, it stands to lose in the long run if it has poor customer relations. Any marketer has to invest in improving the experiences of their biggest assets. This practice creates trust with your audience and helps promote credibility. A business brand will strengthen significantly if it engaged in back and forth communication with its prospects.
Social media marketing must include addressing customer queries. Always respond to your audience across all the social mediums. You can do this by employing auto responding tools that reply to comments. You should promote customer feedback and remember to respond professionally to negative feedback. Smart tactics can help turn critics into brand ambassadors for your business.
You must be up to date with issues related to your audience. This can easily be achieved by analyzing what is being talked about mostly across all your social marketing mediums. Additionally, you should find new ways of engagement, be fun and entertaining and provide reasons for your customers to stay glued to your pages.
5. Social Networking
Social networking is a smart and simple method that works wonders for any company. In social media most people focus on following other people and not companies. For a marketing strategy to be effective it should not just dwell on generating large numbers of fans.
Networking is creating multiple lateral connections to your business. All members of your company should create social media accounts that tie them to the company. As they engage their own followers they automatically market the company.
Using this technique further improves customer relations as your employees can respond to company inquiries or complaints. This practice is very cost effective and more successful than using automated accounts.
Advantages of Hiring an Experienced Social Media Agency as Opposed To Doing It Yourself
There are many companies that offer social media marketing services. It is advisable as a business owner to invest in such professionals. An agency is fully dedicated to your marketing strategy.
They have superior resources and thus will save you time to work on other business areas. Experienced professionals are more knowledgeable in social media trends. Marketing on your own will never be enough due to speed of evolving trends. Most importantly, they possess the necessary expertise, passion and dedication an in-house worker may lack.
Social media marketing agencies employ experts in all elements of efficient marketing strategies. The professionals are conversant with in-depth mechanics of the relevant marketing tools. Hiring an agency like Phase 3 basically maximizes the return on your investment.