It may seem like there was no life before Facebook, but for the last 14 years (I know right! Facebook is already 14 years old) social media has significantly changed the landscape of marketing worldwide. And we are not just talking about the big FB anymore. Businesses that utilize the many platforms available to touch the lives of their audience constantly build better brand awareness, generate more conversions and ultimately achieve enhanced sales quality and business growth. But the question really is, how can anyone looking to sell their wares through the use of social media campaigns stand out in a landscape that is already populated by a proliferation of updates, tweets, event invites and Instagram stories?
Everyone knows that Social Media Business is Big Business
It is true that digital marketing specialists can obtain results faster and more effectively merely by targeting the right channels. Communication with the right audience is key to any successful marketing strategy. The reason why is obvious: with billions of active social media users, a single Instagram post could win your brand more new business than a two-month billboard campaign on High Street.
As Simon Kemp of We are Social puts it: “With 4 billion people now online, we’re already seeing new digital behaviours emerge. Keyboards will be replaced by voice commands and cameras. Visual content will dominate social and messaging, and new technologies will offer richer digital experiences for people everywhere.”
Over the years I have read several expert resources on the subject, and what i have learnt is that social media is here to stay. It appears that not only that social media is accelerating into the next century, in fact statistica has reported that as of end of 2017 there were 2.46 bn social media users worldwide.
Social Media Success Factors
As Instagram has forecasted internet ad revenue (2018) at a whopping $6.84 billion (for mobile) it is easy to see why marketers worldwide aim for social media success factors.
In addition, LinkedIn has grown from 500k to 530M users in 13 years, achieving a stunning 1,000% growth rate. Thus boasting a 37 percent jump in revenue and record highs in engagement and number of jobs posted.
What can we learn from these giants? We think the market has gained momentum and changed categorically the way in which individuals and businesses alike interact with one another. But achieving success in this highly competitive marketplace remains a task. With hard work, commitment and perseverance we strive not only for achieving exposure, but to keep it there in order to get – you guessed it. More Sales!
It is our opinion that the difference between being average and achieving excellence in digital marketing lies in a company’s ability to adapt. With this in mind, we bring you 5 key success factors to getting the best possible results from your hard working social media marketing efforts.
1. Mobile Matters: Everybody is Doing it!
Admit it, whether you are waiting for the train, grabbing a coffee or relaxing on a park bench, at some point you will be using your mobile phone to check in online. It’s official, mobile has surpassed desktop now with 68% of Facebook users accessing their profiles via the mobile site. Twitter: 96 %. Instagram: 98 %. Snapchat: 100 %. Ensure your content is fully optimised for mobile and clear enough for multiple devices. Social media and marketing for mobile is the most potent cocktail of digital marketing for our times. It’s expected that by 2020, there will be close to 6.2 billion smartphones in the world.
Here are few tips on optimising your social media marketing for mobile:
- Make Sure Your Social Media Pages Are Mobile-Friendly. Shorted posts that are easy to digest and engage with works better on mobile.
- The power of short video. Video is the front runner of entertainment at the moment. Keep them short for small business marketing, with the objective of bringing your business to their attention.
- Encourage customers to check-in. Check-in options on sites such as Facebook and Foursquare advertises that people were at your store. An effective endorsement method that is free.
2. Create Momentum with Motion Graphics
Why focus on mobile video for social media marketing? Scroll through your Facebook news feed and you will realise that up to 65% of all its content is delivered via video. Here are some staggering stats:
- Almost 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every day.
- With over a 100 million daily users, Snapchat claims to generate 10 billion video views each day.
- Facebook gets over 8 billion average daily video views.
- Eighty percent of Twitter users access the network on mobile platforms, and 93 percent of Twitter video views happen on mobile.
To stand out in a meaningful way, think about how you can use video to convey a message successfully. You can also animate your imagery in an eye-catching way. Be fun and playful, or create the unexpected. Whatever your style, use it to get noticed – even if it’s just for a second.
3. Set Your Goals High, and Don’t Stop Until You Get There
Be clear on the particulars of every campaign. Set goals for every post, with a target and end result in the minds of every contributing team member. Aim to create synergy between the different channels and the objectives for each.
“Be stubborn about your goals, and flexible about your methods.” -Author Unknown
Want to increase your sales right now?
This may sound obvious, but far too often, people jump into social media with the thought “I’ll see what works and what doesn’t as I go.”
Don’t do that.
Craft a detailed strategy with the use a marketing plan, and put forth your full effort. The first step is to create a SMART goals list.
Creating a list like this will make it easy to track your progress, and allow you to easily see whether or not you need to alter your approach.
For example, if your chosen platform is on Twitter, a SMART goal could be to “increase our followers by five percent by the end of Q2.” In 11 words, you’ve communicated a specific goal, one that is measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound. A SMART goals list doesn’t need to be an in-depth report, it just needs to convey the objective in a short sentence or two.
4. Choose Your Channels Wisely
Every platform has its own set of unique characteristics and loyal followers. Place the focus of your major lead generation strategies on at least 3 social websites.
Ask these questions to analyse your channel sales opportunities:
- Which channels are currently bringing sales leads into your company?
- What is the sales process?
- And how long does it take to convert them into customers?
Ultimately you need to establish that you are using the appropriate channels to maximise – yes you guessed it – your social media marketing efforts. Quality instead of quantity is what we are trying to emphasize here.
5. Stay Creative and Engage!
Tap into your brand’s unique message and convey it consistently in a creative form. Social media marketing has become synonymous with creativity. Invest in quality graphics and video and ask yourself whether your posts are entertaining, lovable and share-worthy? All of this would be rather fruitless if your audience is not responding. It is therefore imperative that you make sure you promote participation as much as possible. A plarao of techniques exist to attract the attention of your users, from launching competitions to adding events and call to actions to interactively attract more buyers.
We bring you these 10 rules of engagement:
- Plan: Do invest in the time for planning with clear objectives set out for each channel.
- Prepare: And post according to plan.
- Monitor: How the execution is going and adjust if necessary to get more likes and shares.
- Fun: Do post things that users and followers find interesting and “share worthy”.
- Unique: Keep to a style that is your own. develop it. Spread it to other channels.
- Consistent: Do it every day, and keep going.
- Expand: Your reach by joining groups and other like minded people and organisations.
- Respond: To questions, queries and comments as soon as possible.
- Partnerships: Create associations with other influencers of value.
- Perseverance: Never stop trying.
In Summary: Social Media has Become another Form of Art
Can we go so far as to say that digital marketing in itself has become a science? Well then, we would like to add that social media has exploded worldwide into the widest form of entertainment (almost). If used correctly, you can turn your digital marketing campaigns into entertaining forms of art. The bonus is of course the measurable return on investment. Making this the most exciting way to communicate with people worldwide. If the excitement of it all escapes you, then think about this: What will the Snapchat users of the next generation be like? And quite possibly what would they invent to stay in touch and entertain?
Our last piece of advice: don’t forget to analyse and adjust your campaigns to see what worked. Take time to go over your analytics to determine its effectiveness. This knowledge is gold in an overall inbound marketing plan.