Growth of the Internet has lead to a massive surge in user base on social platforms. With over 4 billion active users on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Whatsapp makes these platforms most preferred avenues for brands to advertise their products. In the current era of globalization, every brand is aiming to move to social channels for enhancing their reach and engaging with their customers.
Social media marketing is a marketing technique which involves creating and sharing content on social networks. Social media marketing strategy requires laying down plans and doing in-depth research before actually implementing it.
Below are the steps which need to be followed in order to plan for an effective social media marketing strategy.
1.Define your objective:
The setting of the goal is the first and most important step. As you strategize about social marketing, you must decide what is it that you are looking to achieve. Without a clear mission statement, it’s not possible to manage successful campaigns. Brands must set realistic goals which are reasonable and achievable at the same time.
- Spread awareness about the brand:
Brand awareness helps in growing the business. With more users knowing about the brand, the sale is likely to go higher. Social media helps in reaching out to the massive audience that’s there on social platforms. A brand should focus on creating content which must educate the users about the products. Mere posting promotional messages wouldn’t do any good rather businesses should aim to provide the right information to the right audience which creates a lasting impression for the users.
- Achieve higher sales numbers: With no demographic limitation, social platforms provide a medium for brands to reach users globally. Effective social media marketing with appropriate SEO, keyword targeting, consistent posting can certainly bring more sales for the organization.
- Enhance user base by building trust: This is undoubtedly the biggest advantage of using social media platforms for business. A brand must create a social presence and should stay active on it which promotes effective two-way communication between the brand and users. Brands must consider user feedback seriously and should respond to their queries timely. This strengthens the user customer relationship and enhances user base.
- Increase profit margins: No one can deny the fact that the ultimate aim of each business is to produce revenue. Social media marketing helps brands to cut down on labor cost as well as save on printing price for any other form of traditional marketing.
Many more other goals can be achieved through the proper use of social media, including:
- Valuable information about your customers
- Monitor brand reputation
- Get inbound links to increase your company’s online rankings, which helps increase sales
- Find a new audience
- Introduce products and brands to customers
2. Understand your target audiences:
Once the mission to achieve is decided, the next important step is to research in-depth about your target audience. Use Google analytics tool to find the demographic traits of your users. Age, Gender, Location, the platform used can serve as important parameters in understanding your audience better. Further analysis of online data of the user could reveal their online interest, which social platform has the maximum users, what time of the day sees maximum traffic and which platform to target for targeting major chunk of users. Along with these brands must audit their current social presence which would give them a clear picture of where they are currently and where they wish to be. These details would help businesses create personalized and focused user persona.
3. Select the metrics to measure performance:
Mere likes and shares are not of much use if it doesn’t get converted into sales. Brands must choose a metric which should define if their efforts are bringing desired results.
Conversion rate: It’s the number of users who actually perform the Call to Action. Higher conversion rate means the brand was able to entice the users to perform the desired action.
- Reach: a Reach is a number of unique users who saw your content. For a successful social media marketing campaign, reach holds the key. Brands should aim to reach to as many users as possible.
- Bounce Rate: Time spent by the users on the website indicates the relevancy of content for users. Bounce is counted when the user comes on the landing page but exits without performing any further action. Websites with minimum bounce rate perform the best.
- Clicks and Share: Clicks and share depict if the users are encouraged to interact with the brand. Usually, both these counts are high if users find the content informative and worth engaging with.
- Brand Sentiment: Word of mouth has a massive influence on social media campaigns. User sentiments for the brand make or break the campaign. Brands should focus on creating a positive vibe about their campaigns on social media.
4. Create content:
By now you know what you are aiming to achieve and who are you targeting. Curate content which should resonate with the interest of your targeting audience. Your social media plan revolves around the content. Make sure you come up with highly focused, relevant and engaging content.
Social media platforms are compatible with different forms of content. Be it a blog post, infographics, audio or video posts it supports all of them. Content should be a mix of promotional and informative messages. Landing page should entice the users to stay on it, content readability should be high. Create a content schedule and plan to post content on regular intervals. Consistency is the key. Be it a blog, website or social platform they should be updated.
5. Track, Measure and Improve:
There are no guaranteed steps for success in social media marketing. Rather it’s more like performing and optimizing mechanism. Results are measured through analytics tools and campaigns are tweaked based on the numbers. Metrics should be monitored in real-time to analyze how they are performing.