Success on social media.  It’s about working smarter, not harder

So you’re excited (or at least intrigued) about what success on social media might mean for your business.  Right?  If so, that’s a great thing.  But too often clients start the conversation with us like this…

“So, what’s it going to take to get us on all the social media sites?”

Possessing a generally valid mind-set that everything done well can be done better, clients often equate more networks with better exposure.

Well, it doesn’t quite work like that.

In fact, focusing on such a broad goal may be counter-productive – trying to “feed” too many networks (everything from chatting services to photo and video sharing) could consume massive resources and, without a doubt, distract you from your core business.

Or, you can spend less effort and less capital by simply maximizing your presence on a few wisely selected networks. Rather than an “everywhere for everyone” approach, today’s smarter online marketing efforts require learning what network or networks your target audience likes to frequent.

Try these strategies to plan and execute your approach to social media outreach.

1. Use Facebook.

Higgins-Marketing-Group-Facebook success on social mediaThe world’s largest social network has its flaws and critics, and they change the rules for marketers way too often. But with 1.09 billion daily members worldwide, 989 million mobile members, and 1.65 billion monthly active members, it’s one of the smartest ways to cast a very general net for your audience. Facebook also tends to skew a little older, which could be a plus or a minus, depending on your audience.

2. Find the right balance (but include Google+).

Higgins-Marketing-Group-Balance success on social mediaWhile trying to be on every channel isn’t a good strategy, neither is being on just one.  If you put all your effort into Facebook, you won’t connect with those who spend more time on Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn, and vice versa. The magic number of how many is really up to you and your organization – who you want to reach and how well you support it – opening a channel “because you should” without actively feeding and caring for it by sharing content gives a perception of not caring. A caveat to this is Google+.  After you have setup your Google My Business page, you should setup a company Google+ page – not because you will amass a ton of followers/customers on this channel over others, but because Google loves Google.  Your blog articles have a good shot of showing up via Google search when posted on Google + versus some other channels.

3. ‘Pay to play.’

Some sites, including Facebook “invite you” to connect Higgins-Marketing-Group-PaytoPlay success on social mediawith a larger audience if you pay to boost certain posts or your company’s overall presence. Think of it as a cost of doing business, like Google AdWords. Many don’t know this, but Facebook is known to organically show your posts to less than 10 percent of those who ‘like’ your page. By setting up occasional or even daily campaigns, you can increase your reach while still targeting the specific demographic groups that make most sense for your business.

4. Keep feeding.

Higgins-Marketing-Group-MoreContent success on social mediaConsumers love fresh content – and so do search engines. Rather than encouraging your marketing team to “put something up whenever you get to it” it makes better sense to dedicate folks to regular posting according to a pre-defined social media plan/calendar (more on this in #6 below) – daily is preferable for many channels,  even a few times a day for Twitter. Or, if you have a following or share more complex content like podcasts or videos, you can get away with weekly posts – as long as you try and stick to a schedule.


5. Recycle. 

Higgins-Marketing-Group-Recycle success on social mediaIf you’re posting on multiple channels, you can save time by putting out similar messages or even referring users to the same link, like a cool new blog post. Another Twitter strategy is to Tweet out a similar message for day and night streams – that doubles the possibility of being seen, since p.m. people may not scroll through the entire day’s activity to see your morning post.

6. Plan ahead.

Higgins-Marketing-Group-Calendar success on social mediaCome up with a weekly schedule. What types of content should be shared? What company activity should be promoted?  This can give your team guidance instead of drawing a blank each day. It also can help assign who is posting content, monitoring channels and interacting with visitors?

 


7. Watch for trends.

Higgins-Marketing-Group-Trending success on social mediaGood marketing vision is looking beyond what you’re doing today to what people may want in the future. Facebook’s demise has been predicted for years, even though it keeps defying this speculation. Video services like Periscope, Snapchat, even Facebook Live are likely to be popular tools and services in the next year.

 

Overall, good social management should be treated as a prime focus, whether it’s driving people to your site to purchase a product or simply creating relationships and building loyalty.  However, it’s VERY easy to get over extended.  Be smart about how much you choose to bite off… think quality and consistency OVER quantity of social networks and you’ll be much more successful!

Good Luck!

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Sources:
http://newsroom.fb.com/company-info/
http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/10/08/social-networking-usage-2005-2015/
http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/yesmail-retail-brands-social-media-channels/622117
http://www.statista.com/statistics/272014/global-social-networks-ranked-by-number-of-users/
http://www.practicalecommerce.com/articles/86264-91-Leading-Social-Networks-Worldwide
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/social-media-sites-youll-be-seeing-more-of-in-2016/

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