9 Ways to Improve Your Business' Social Media in 2015 [INFOGRAPHIC]
With the growth of e-readers, tablets and smartphones, the buying methods of consumers of all ages and business buyers are ever-changing. Social media such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn will help you continue to captivate and target specific audiences in 2015 and beyond. You'll also have greater opportunities to engage customers and strengthen their loyalty. Here are some tips that will help start you off in the right direction with your social media campaigns:
1. Establish Goals
Social media is a proven method to achieve several marketing goals such as increasing traffic to your website, brand awareness, sales, and ROI. One mistake many businesses make is failing to set goals for their social media accounts and updating their accounts only sporadically. On the other hand, some companies set goals too high with unrealistic expectations. It's important to choose goals that can be achieved, set benchmarks, then find ways to grow those goals. Incidentally, numbers (such as likes or follows) might indicate reach, but engagement (such as RTs, shares or comments) is a far more meaningful metric.
2. Identify Missed Opportunities
Take a look at all the accounts under your management and let go of those that are being neglected or aren't gaining a lot of traction. For the networks that you want to hold on to, consider new strategies and approaches to get more followers and likes. Content matters. It's the only thing you really have to offer, and so if your pages (or tweets, or...) are not competitive or updated regularly, your customers could find some other vendor who can engage them with better content on a topic they care about. Maybe that would be your competitor?
3. Create Twitter Lists
Stay on top of the latest trends and news by building a Twitter list. Find news websites and social media experts and add them to your list so you can stay tuned in to the latest techniques and trends. Set reminders so that you check your lists on a regular basis. A Twitter list is also a great opportunity to be made visible to these experts. If you create a list titled "marketing masters" then the individual you added will be notified of this - and know that you hold them in a high regard. Typically they will follow back in reciprocity, add you to a list, or look to engage with you separately.
4. Learn Best Practices
There are techniques and tricks that aren't yet widespread that can help forward the success of your brand in social media. Social media is always evolving and it's nearly impossible to stay on top of everything. Continuing your self-education on social media is important - as it can literally make or break your social media campaigns.
Even the most skilled social media managers utilizing a combination of common sense and powerful automation tools can get it wrong from time to time. This action plan, courtesy of Act-On Software, provides some very helpful tips for managing a social media crisis:
5. Update Your Information
Make sure you keep your profile information up-to-date; routinely check all of your profiles and make sure that they're all updated with your current contact information, website URL, phone number, office hours, etc., and make sure all of that data is consistent across all channels. You can also add a description that is catchy and helps you stand out, and optimize profile visibility by using keywords related to your line of work that receive high search volume.
6. Leverage Social Plugins
Social influence can play a major impact on the success of your marketing efforts. You should make links to your social pages very accessible by including follow buttons on every page on your website in the header, footer, or both. Your blog is also an excellent place to ensure that these plugins are available so sharing your great content (or simply adding a Like) is encouraged - and very easy.
7. Target Groups
With Graph Search on Facebook you can identify the interests of your target groups which helps you understand the types and topics of content most relevant to them, which ultimately helps in getting more likes. Depending on your available budget, you can apply some of this data towards Facebook ads which can be very beneficial to incorporate in this strategy. These types of tools help ensure that you are reaching the right audiences along with a proven track record for marketing ROI.
8. Upload Videos
It's getting easier and easier to shoot videos and upload them to YouTube and Facebook. And since a picture is still worth a thousand words (and a moving picture might be worth 10,000), videos can keep your audience stay engaged and lead to higher share volume. YouTube is still one of the top search engines in the world for video content, however Facebook is becoming an excellent platform for posting videos and getting engagement.
9. Stay Focused on Quality
Don't fixate on who might be gaining on you. Despite the competition, you need to focus on the quality of your presence on social media - and not so heavily on the quantity. Pick a social media channel or two to concentrate on; don't spread yourself too thin by trying to have a presence on all channels. A strong presence in one network is far more valuable than a weak one in three.