Social media is for one and all, but is it equally true when it comes to social media success? Unfortunately, NO! Almost every business starts social media marketing with great enthusiasm, but very few of them succeed in real.
The reasons are wide-ranging. Some failed to gather the potential people in their online community. Some chose the wrong social networks for themselves. Some lacked a strategy, as their sole concentration was to be a clone of their competitors. Some wanted over-night success from social media and when they did not get it, they left it. The more people, the more stories!
If you don’t want to be one of them and want to make most of the amazing marketing channel, here are 10 steps to follow before you jump into the new media wagon.
Have a strategy: Before starting any new venture, you always should have a proper plan in place. Social media is no exception. Lack of strategy is one of the top reasons that 1 out of 4 businesses fail on social media.
Determine factors like what channels to choose, what should be the approach of your social profiles, the ratio between self-promotional content and other posts, the number of weekly posts for each channel and so on.
Finalize the tools: Now it’s time to select the social media tools. This should include basic social media platforms as well as extended tools like HootSuite or Sprout Social or Buffer.
Every network has its own merits and own user demographics. Choose the ones, which are loved by your target audience.
Your social content also plays a vital role in it. For example, if you have plenty of images and videos to share, YouTube and Pinterest or Instagram would be a great choice. But decide after checking the presence of your potential audience on any network.
Set a goal: Set your social media goal. What do you want to achieve from social media marketing?
More sales? More brand awareness? More online visibility? This is the overall social media objective. Now you need to focus on individual channel goals as well.
For example, if you go for Twitter, try to settle on your objectives to achieve on the platform. But think practically. You may have a goal to reach 1000 Followers in just 15 days, but ponder over its doable-factor.
Build a team: Choose the best person in charge! If there is none to take the responsibility, hire someone. Trust us, this is an investment, you will never regret.
Followed by selecting the leader, check if you have a competent team for social media marketing. Your SMM team should include creative writers (to write compelling content), skillful designers (to create amazing visual content) and talented developers (to develop flawless apps and tools).
Create content marketing plans: Content is the king!
Segregate social media content into two parts: promotional and educational. Decide the weekly ratio for each segment for every social network, you are eyeing at. The ideal ratio is, however, 1: 4.
Always plan one week ahead. And also allot some room for real-time interaction with your audience and latest industry news.
Start a blog: This is essential, irrespective of your niche.
This is one of the most efficient ways to prove your credibility in your domain. Maintain a regular consistency. Twice or twice a week is pretty good to start with.
Go visual: Social media audience loves to see more visual content than plain text posts. So, you should be equipped enough to generate good number of visual content regularly.
Secondly, be sure of your design team. It’s not a one-day practice. They should create innovative content for more than one network everyday. Be consistent.
Be reachable: Your audience wants to get heard and responded. Be as reachable as possible. In case of a query, answer it, no matter how trivial it is. If there is a negative comment, don’t ignore or delete. Instead, address it, apologize for the inconvenience, offer a solution and take it offline.
Your team should be able to do it, else social media might prove detrimental for your brand.
Take care of influencer amplification: You must have influencers, inside and outside of your business. It’s time to bring them in one circle. Start it by adding them in your business pages on different channels. Interact regularly with them to share ideas and opinions. Share their posts on your channel. They can add new traffic to your social profiles.
Measure the RoI: Don’t ever laze around to measure your social media success. Track the performance of each link, you posted on social media. Bit, ly can help you do it.
Measure click-through-rates, conversion rates and total traffic from different social channels to your website or blog or physical store. There are tools like Facebook Insights, Google Analytics, Twitonomy to help you in this.