Social media has become a marketing necessity for most companies, but that doesn’t mean the air of mystery around it has vanished. For all its complexities, though, it’s an effective way to keep in touch with your customers and to foster trust with them. There is a huge audience out there, so don’t miss out on connecting with all those current and potential customers.
To start, it helps to understand how each channel differs and how best to use them. The main sites most businesses should be paying attention to are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. Depending on your product or service, some channels will work better than others. What’s most important is finding which works best for you to reach your ideal customers and engage with them.
Facebook has over 2 billion active users and is still going strong after all these years. With 68% of adults using it on an almost daily basis, you’ll miss out on a large audience if you don’t maintain a strong presence here. It’s also the preferred advertising platform, so you can be sure your competitors are lurking around. Facebook loves video these days, so be sure to share those as often as possible.
Instagram is the cool kid in class right now, rapidly growing to 1 billion active monthly users. This is the ideal place to reach younger audiences – teenagers love it. Ad spend on Instagram is higher than Facebook and for good reason: it has the highest engagement rate among social platforms. Video is key on Instagram as well, so utilize it frequently.
Twitter’s 326 million active monthly users push out 500 million tweets per day, and this rapid pace gives it the strategic advantage of providing immediate customer service. 88% percent of social advertisers use Twitter, which is second only to Facebook. Videos make up about half of its ad revenue, which is something to keep in mind when building out content.
LinkedIn continues to be the largest professional networking site, with 260 million active monthly users, and is ideal for B2B companies who looking to educate consumers, establish credibility and drive conversions. It’s the most used platform for salespeople trying to engage with their customers and provides 80% of social media B2B leads. Engagement rates among users are high when the content is informative and relevant, so it is important know your audience and what they care about.
The key to successful social media is engaging with your audience in relevant and authentic ways. You can follow all the rules of when and how to post, but if your message doesn’t resonate, your followers will scroll on by. Here are a few tips for building great customer relationships on social media:
- Tell your story: Use your social media accounts to talk about who your brand is, what you offer and why you are different. You want to build a long-term relationship with your followers, so tell them all the things you want them to know about your company.
- Tell your truth: Your social media content should follow your brand voice and tone. If you don’t speak like your brand, you won’t sound authentic, which can be the kiss of death for many companies.
- Don’t overwhelm: Break your story down into small, digestible pieces. Give your followers a reason to come back for more. Vary your content between copy, graphics, video, etc. to keep interest high.
- Talk back (nicely): If someone comments on your page or post, let them know you’re listening and give them an answer! Do it in a timely manner, too. Users expect a response within a few hours, so monitor your accounts daily for new activity.
- Keep it topical: Don’t post about topics that have nothing to do with your business, unless it’s an affiliated cause or project. It will confuse your followers and can lessen their trust in you. Keep your “expertise” to what you know best.
And don’t forget about measuring your social media activity – you need to know where you started and how it’s all performing if you want to gain valuable insight.
There are a lot of different factors that play into running successful social media accounts. It only takes some concerted effort from the right people to make a noticeable impact on your business, so don’t get discouraged! Not sure where to start? Download our digital landscape review template to assess your social media baseline today. Download Today!
About the Author:
Suzie is an accomplished Marketing professional with 12 years of broad exposure developing and leading strategic marketing efforts in support of company goals and brand growth.
Whether at a small business or a Fortune 500 company, Suzie is known for helping local and national organizations tell their stories in ways that generate results. She creates value through a disciplined strategic planning process that is built upon communication and accountability.
Prior to joining yorCMO, Suzie worked with a variety of industries including real estate, retail, higher education, pharmaceuticals and technology. She is a hands-on marketing executive who is skilled in positioning, analytics, messaging, branding, targeting and digital marketing. Suzie also brings the added advantage of a strong creative background including design, writing and art direction.