Friday, 27 March 2015

How to Fast Track Your Social Media Marketing Strategy

So, you have decided it is time to launch a social media marketing campaign. Good for you! Whether you are just starting a business or you have finally decided it is time to jump on the social media bandwagon like everyone else, you need to know how to fast track your campaign.


When you are trying to launch a social media marketing strategy quickly, it is tempting to jump in without giving much thought on how you are going to go about it. Unfortunately, if you are trying to just wing it, your followers and fans will pick up on that. Even worse, winging your social media marketing strategy could prove to be a turn-off for prospective customers, even driving them toward your competition.
It is certainly understandable to have a desire to kick start your social media marketing strategy. In order to attract followers and fans and convert them into loyal customers, you need a social media strategy based on a clear plan. Begin by thinking about what is that you want to accomplish through your social media campaign. This can vary from one brand to another, and may even depend on the type of business in which you are involved. For instance, your goals might include increasing brand exposure, promoting products or services, or interacting with customers. Keep in mind, however, that it is not enough to know your goals; you must also take the time to understand your prospects' goals. Understanding the needs of your audience will give you the ability to interact with them in a more effective manner. Additionally, knowing your audience's interests will help you to understand how to develop a successful content strategy.  


Many brands make the mistake of thinking that the best way to jump start a social media marketing campaign is to develop a presence on as many platforms as possible. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to maintain this type of pace. Not all social media networks may be suitable for your brand based on your goals and business. The best course of action is to start small with just one social network. Which network is best for your business? This depends on various factors including the nature of your business. For instance, if you are primarily B2B, then LinkedIn is a good choice. Are women the majority of your customers?
Consider Pinterest. Regardless of the type of business in which you are involved, you usually cannot go wrong with Twitter. A fairly easy platform that does not take long to learn, Twitter provides you with access to a massive user base. Although Twitter has struggled with slow user growth during the last few months, USA TODAY reports that the site still has 288 million monthly active users, which is certainly large enough to launch your social media marketing campaign. As your company grows, you can begin experimenting with more social media networks.


Regardless of how well you plan your social media marketing campaign, you will accomplish nothing if you do not simply jump in and get started. Planning is great, but do not make the mistake of spending so much time planning and that you fail to execute. There are actually many steps you can take to increase your social media exposure. Begin by making certain you have included the appropriate social media icons on your brand's website. The inclusion of such icons will make it much easier for those who visit your website to follow you on their social media network of choice. The easier you can make it for people to connect with you, the larger you will be able to grow your following. You should also link your social media profile to your company's website. With this strategy, if someone stumbles upon your profile via a retweet or a share, they can learn more about your brand.


One of the most common reasons that many brands fail to succeed with social media is that their strategy is hit-or-miss. You cannot succeed with social media marketing if you only post when you have a spare moment. An effective social media marketing campaign requires that you plan ahead and make it a priority. The number of times that you should post will depend upon the platform you have chosen to use. It is important to recognize that even posting once a day may not be enough to gain exposure. This is particularly true on popular platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook. If you only post once daily, the reality is that most people will not see your post as a result of timing and newer posts pushing your post to the bottom. Research from Buffer indicates that the top brands adhere to the following social media posting frequency:
  • Pinterest: 5 posts daily
  • Twtter: 3 posts daily
  • Google+: 3 posts daily
  • Facebook: 2 posts daily


One of the most important things you can do to quickly grow your social media presence is to post interesting, valuable, shareable content. The type of content that will perform best will also vary based on the platform you are using. For instance, visual content tends to perform better on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and Google+. While image-based content can drive engagement, it is also important to maintain a balance. Your ultimate goal is to convert followers and fans into customers. Avoid having the bulk of your content comprised of information about your company and products. Sharing and retweeting content shared by others can be a great way to offer a diverse mix of content that will keep users engaged and sharing.
Keep in mind that while there are many things you can do to fast track your social media marketing strategy, do not expect overnight results. It takes time. Following these steps can help you to launch a successful social media marketing campaign and begin growing your followers. 
fast track / shutterstock


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