Future-proof tactical and effective social media

Social media is a phenomenon which has changed the way we interact, with each other, with businesses and with brands. Yet some businesses are still not carrying out effective social media activity.

Social media has changed the scope of the marketing landscape and gives true meaning to the notion of two way dialogue. Effective social media has simultaneously raised customers’ expectations whilst allowing them an insight into brands that has never been seen before. Customer satisfaction and dissatisfaction is readily broadcast and shared on a daily basis.

As a business, you need to be in it to win it in order see the value it has. Without effective social media you are missing out on a huge opportunity to connect with current customers, to encourage loyalty and new customers, to raise awareness. The key is not to dive in and attempt to take on everything at once. It is important to do an assessment to decide on the most effective social media channels to complement the rest of your marketing mix.

Whichever channels you decide to pursue, you must create content people want to talk about, listen to, read and engage with. Effective social media is also an excellent listening tool, you can find out what customers think of your brand and what it is they want. Real interactions are of course another important element of successful social media activity.

The main social media channels are: blogs, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. Lets take a look at the aims, typical activities and how to measure the metrics of these methods of social media.

Blogs

Aims:

– To increase engagement with your brand or business.
– Demonstrate thought leadership.
– Increase awareness.
– Increase website traffic through Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

Typical activities:

– Regular content generation.
– Encouraging user generated content by inviting guest bloggers.
– Promote blog posts on social channels.

How to measure:

– Blog traffic (unique visits, time on site, bounce rate).
– Number of blog posts.
– Number of social shares.
– Conversions
– SEO

Twitter

Aims:

– Brand awareness and engagement.
– Social influence and reputation building.
– To be a customer service tool.
– Share blog posts and other engaging content.
– To influence customers during the sales funnel.
– Monitor opinions and thoughts about not only your brand but also competitors.

Typical activities:

– Regular tweets.
– Paid options include pinned and promoted tweets.
– Segmenting those you follow into lists categorised by interest group.
– Engaging in conversations and Twitter chats.
– Utilising hashtags in order to appear in searches.

How to measure:

– Retweets
– Followers
– Mentions
– Lead generation and customer acquisition.
– Favourited tweets.
– Influence of followers.

Facebook

Aims:

– Engage with customers.
– Personalise a brands identity.
– Raise awareness.
– Listen to feedback from customers.

Typical activities:

– Regular updates and posts.
– Sharing interesting information, text and photos.
– Creating events, notes, pages and profiles.
– Sponsored posts, boosted posts and other forms of advertising.
– Competitions and prize draws.
– Helping users to find your content through hashtags.

How to measure:

– Followers
– Likes
– Reach/views
– Shares
– Lead generation and new customers.
– Comments

LinkedIn

Aims:

– Lead generation and acquisition.
– Company profiling.
– Community generation through interest groups.
– Thought leadership.

Typical activities:

– Create and join relevant groups.
– Participate in Q&A sessions.
– Sponsored posts and ads.
– Encouraging employee participation.
– Promoting events.
– Sharing relevant content.
– Recruitment advertising.

How to measure:

– Followers
– Shares, likes and comments.
– Referral traffic,
– Group participation.

Instagram

Aims:

– Brand engagement.
– Encourage social sharing.
– Showcase the company culture through the brand personality.
– Connect with customers.

Typical activities:

– Take and share photos.
– Following relevant profiles.
– Create a community.Utilise hashtags to aid search.
– Comment and like
– Encourage employees to get involved in the creation of the content.

How to measure:

– Followers
– Social shares
– Referral traffic
– Comments
– Likes

There are many things to consider when implementing an effective social media strategy – from a consistent brand identity from platform to platform, to content generation and measurement. These elements coupled with the fact the networks are constantly evolving, can make the business of tactical social media execution a challenging feat. As a result, some companies have chosen to outsource the service to MJA Marketing who have expertise in this area.

Within the digital marketing landscape there are many examples of brands who fail to appreciate the value of effective social media, as it can often become hidden within the sales funnel. To counter this, it is key to understand that the beauty of social media lies not only in its ability to create cut-through where traditional channels cannot but that it is all entirely measurable. Through key metrics and monitoring you can begin to see the influence effective social media has on the decision making process. As well as beginning to leverage the reach of your social media channels and its capabilities in helping you to achieve your business objectives.

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