If you run a business desperate to outperform your competitors, chances are you have a robust marketing strategy that covers the major social media channels. Sure, you set up a Facebook page, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and even a YouTube channel, but are these online platforms actually paying off?
Social marketing is a delicate art and there is always something new to learn. In order to make the most of these social media platforms, you have to learn how to use each one. Contrary to what most people think, there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach.
Every platform requires its own specific tactics, and this strategy is the cornerstone of social media marketing. The long and strenuous process of mastering each platform is the reason most businesses outsource their social marketing strategy to professional digital marketing agencies.
If you are up for the challenge and would rather do it yourself, here are a few things you need to know in order to get your marketing tactics right.
1. Discern your Audience
Social media probably is the most diverse of all advertising channels. Aside from the platforms mentioned above, there are many others that could be beneficial to your business, not to mention the many websites and forums that provide social marketing and engagement avenues.
Using such an elaborate resource effectively is demanding even for a firm with adequate resources. So, start by understanding the channels where your audience is likely to visit and concentrate your efforts on these platforms to begin with. This will give you the highest chance of scaling quickly.
2. Hold a Conversation with Your Audience
In as much as finding your audience is important, having a ‘conversation’ is just as important. As such, after settling on the appropriate social media platform, it is advisable that you talk with your audience as opposed to talking to them.
You don’t need followers on your pages, you need engaged followers. Engaged followers are the ones likely to buy your products or services and share your content with their network.
Social media creates a fantastic space for interaction, unlike printed ads or mass media platforms. Take advantage of this by having genuine conversations with your audience or you will come off sounding mechanical. As soon as your audience senses a robotic tone in your communication, they will switch off and go elsewhere!
3. Learn from and Perfect your Campaigns with Every Mistake
Admitting mistakes is the toughest part of doing business. Doing so is a lot harder when you are in the glare of the public eye. Acknowledging and learning from your mistakes will determine if you will succeed at social marketing or not.
Making a mistake on social media is easy; your social media community manager may post at the inappropriate time, or they can be rude to a client or take too long to respond to a query.
And the worst part is that the internet never forgets, so every little mistake will linger on for a while – unless you are lucky and no one notices.
When you make a mistake, it is best to acknowledge it directly and not to try to deny it. A thought-out response can lead to a fruitful interaction. Always be sincere and never try to sweep the error underneath the rug. As a policy, accept every mistake and address each candidly. Also, use misunderstandings as a lesson and develop better management strategies.
4. Address Negative Feedback Positively
This is one place you cannot afford to go wrong with your marketing tactics. Treat negative feedback the same way you treat the mistakes you make on social media: as a growth opportunity.
Instead of ignoring any complaints, respond quickly and honestly. It is critical that you acknowledge the mistake and give the complainant an actionable response. If possible, get in touch with the person over the phone. Also, offer a replacement for the product or service that elicited the complaint.
Kindly note that every customer complaint is unique, so your response should be specific to the feedback.
5. Keep Your Campaign Active
Right now, only light moves faster than social media. For this reason alone, you need to ensure your social media campaigns are done consistently.
The moment you start taking your foot off the pedal, you start losing followers. You will also not be able to attract new ones quickly enough. Social media will only work for your business if you are all in.
It is vital that you humanize your brand and doing so requires that you be active and personally involved in your chosen social media platform. Remember, you succeed online by building strong emotional bonds, and strengthening the interactions with your audience. This strategy is the foolproof approach to creating a dependable base of faithful brand advocates.
Leveraging the advantages of social media to give your brand a prominent online presence is not complicated. It involves practicing the basic stuff: understanding your clients, conversing with them, and admitting your mistakes. Besides those, also address negative feedback on time, and ensure you are active and consistent in your campaigns.
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