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Social media is the new marketing channel that every major corporation and SME is striving to exploit. However, only an insightful few are able to reap the full branding, lead-generation, sales,and expansion benefits provided by these ‘instant’ platforms. The key here is being SMART (more on that in a moment), and understanding that social media marketing requires a whole host of tailored strategies. Here are 5 essentials that should be part of any effective social media marketing strategy:
- Be SMART: To fully capitalize on your investments, be sure to set goals that are:
- ‘S’pecific: Create goals that are objective, not vague and all-inclusive.
- ‘M’easurable: The goals should be numerically determinable.
- ‘A’ttainable: Keep your expectations realistic and your goals achievable.
- ‘R’elevant: Align your social media strategy with your overall marketing strategy.
- ‘T’imely: Break down the bigger picture into smaller pieces to increase attainability and stay on track with deadlines.
- Know Your Audience: Choosing the right audience, understanding who they are, and what they want to see on their newsfeeds is essential for running an effective social media campaign. Focus on surveying and studying your target audience, and get involved by actively responding to any and all comments or questions on your blog/page and others geared towards the same audience. Finally, collect and analyze feedback using appropriate user feedback tools.
- Choose the Right Platform: Creating accounts on every available platform will only lead to wasted resources and confusion. Simplify your social media marketing strategy by operating on only a select few, relevant platforms. Keep in mind your services, business goals, and target audience concentration when shortlisting platforms. What works for someone else might not necessarily work for you.
- Incorporate Video Content: According to Cisco’s 2017-2022 Visual Networking Index, 82% of all online consumer traffic will be generated from video content by 2020. Video is one of the few mediums that crosses inter-industrial borders and can be adopted by anyone, with positive results. Create brand awareness through recorded content, and engage your target audience via live videos for maximum optimization.
- Give Social Media Automation A Go: Social media automation is a relatively new term, and one that should be used more often. Through online tools like Hootsuite and Buffer, or the up-and-coming Social Champ, you can effectively save multiple hours on daily posting over your various social media platforms. These automation tools also allow advance content scheduling and post recycling to ensure maximum output with minimum investment.