3 Social Media Marketing Tips Your Business Can't Ignore
You might not realise, but social media marketing requires commitment and the right organisational mindset if implemented as a marketing tool for your business. With the changes to the marketing landscape and new trends emerging every day (or at least it feels this way!), it can be difficult to stay on top. Whilst before using social platforms as means of advertising was second to traditional methods, nowadays social media marketing is the first choice of businesses and individuals alike. Not only cost effective, but now also a vital tool and often the primary marketing channel used globally, let’s look at some no-nonsense ways you can accomplish growth and further your brand through your social platforms!
1. Create a marketing strategy
You are probably getting tired of hearing this! However, it is time to realise that there’s no substitute for a sound strategy. Brands which have built large and engaged followings have not done so by accident. They strategise and have a plan for their social media channels - they've taken the time to understand what’s important, interesting, and entertaining to their audience.
Wondering how to engage your audience? Here's what an effective social media plan for your business should address:
The needs of your audience and their expectations on each platform your company uses
Types of content your brand will post on those platforms
Content themes to guide the kinds of posts you will create
Frequency of updates
Roles and responsibilities of team members and other parties that will manage your social media channels
Tools that will be used to automate and schedule social media updates
Policies for responding to mentions, comments, and messages - positive and negative
Creating a content calendar is an effective way to organize the social media content you create, and ensure it aligns with your broader strategic protocol. You may decide to plan your content a week, a month, a quarter, or a year in advance - in all cases, a content calendar will help you stay active on your channels even during the most hectic of times.
2. Make sure your staff has mastered your brand’s voice
Whoever has the responsibility of crafting your social media content and respond to your followers also needs to have a firm understanding of your brand’s voice. If your content and interactions are off-brand, your social media presence might confuse customers, or even drive them away!
One idea for keeping social media managers on track is to have a style guide for your company. A style guide can contain rules for any aspects of communication you want to be handled consistently by all who represent your business in areas such as public relations, marketing, front of house, sales, customer service etc.
What is your brands voice? It is simply the 'personality' of your brand or company as expressed through the written word or other published content. Tone of voice governs what you say and how you say it – the content and style of textual communications, in any setting and in any medium.
A style guide might include these elements (and much more):
How you want your business name presented
Hyphenation of certain words and compound word preferences (such as “well being” vs. “well-being”, “showjumping” vs. “show jumping”)
Taboo words (those that you never want to be used within your posts)
The tone of your company (such as casual, earthy, witty, prestigious, high-tech, etc.)
Before you task someone with tending to your social media, make sure you’ve given them your style guide, and encourage them to ask you for direction when they’re unsure whether proposed content will accurately reflect your brand voice.
Psst: Also encourage your staff to follow the style guide when interacting with clients in real-life. If you run a show centre with a positive and helpful online presence, you want the secretary on the day of your show reflecting this!
3. Be approachable and real
Brands that come off as out of touch with, or uninterested in their followers, put themselves at a competitive disadvantage. It is ’s called social media for a reason! Make your brand presence more than just a talking logo that promotes your services in every post - mix it up and give your updates the human touch.
Some ideas for how to do that include:
Strike conversations with your followers - ask questions or create polls to get them talking
Share glimpses of what happens behind the scenes of your business via videos (we advise to still keep this in line with your brand voice, and limit content that is not brand related. Keep posts like these to your personal profile!)
Introduce your team members through bios and/or video interviews
Share real-life stories about how your products and services have helped your customers
By making followers feel at home with your brand, you’ll gain their trust, which in return facilitates interaction with your company. Ultimately, that can result in more referrals, leads, and new clients!
Although we specialise in the equestrian industry, I have worked as a social media strategist for years within other industries (and continue to do so)! This has given me an opportunity to work with clients take social media seriously and have put processes in place to facilitate their success. It's also given me ample opportunity to deal with businesses which fail to acknowledge that social media marketing requires commitment, and the right organisational mindset.
Do you want to position your company for all of the benefits social media can deliver? Get in touch to learn more about what we can do for you!