Social media advertising is no easy feat. It takes thoughtful planning to create quality strategies and requires consistent content that appeals to audiences.
If you’re ready to conquer the world of social media marketing and inspire users to take action with your company, apply these eight suggested steps to your future strategies:
Step #1: Know Your Audience
Effective social media advertising requires audience awareness. You must gain a solid understanding of your audience to target users and drive conversions. Knowing your audience helps you create content that speaks to the right people and encourages them to choose your company’s solutions.
Learning Your Audience
Chances are you already understand your current customer base. Use this knowledge to grow your audience and reach potential customers through your social media platform(s). If you’re starting out and not sure about the details of your customer base, you can still evaluate your ideal audience.
To better understand your current customers and your ideal audience, ask yourself:
- Who am I serving, and who do I want to serve?
- What demographics does my company target?
- Family status
- Which platforms do my customers/audience members use the most?
- What messaging speaks to them the most?
By evaluating these points and more, you can approach your social media marketing with a clearer idea of what makes your target market tick. Use the information you gather to create beneficial audience personas and form social media strategies that serve them.
Step #2: Know Your Competition
It’s necessary to know what your competitors are doing and how well they are doing it so that you can outdo them. Evaluate the competition’s activity on various social media platforms and gain insight into what does and does not work with audiences. Since you are likely targeting a similar, overlapping group, you should look at factors like:
- Which platforms see the most engagement
- Which posts are more popular among various audiences
- What the posts look like (images, graphics, and video) and “sound” like (tone and voice)
- What media gets the most engagements (i.e., short videos, long videos, infographics, company photos, test-only posts, etc.)
- How the company interacts with engagements
Apply what you learn from your competitors to improve your strategy and increase your chances of winning their audiences.
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Step #3: Determine the Platforms You Want to Use
Part of knowing your audience is knowing which social media platforms they use. It’s one thing to focus all your time and energy on Twitter. However, if you find that your current customers and target audience are primarily on Facebook, you will likely waste time, effort, and marketing budgets on Twitter campaigns.
It can be risky, expensive, and potentially futile to spread your efforts across all social media platforms, so focus on the networks that fit your objectives best and interest your audience the most.
The 5 most popular platforms for social media advertising in 2022 include:
Each platform offers its own style of networking and media regulations. For instance, Instagram is image- and video-heavy, making it an ideal choice for companies trying to capture leads through visual marketing. Twitter, however, is more text-heavy and a good platform for B2B marketing.
Decide which platforms will suit you best and shape your next steps around them.
Step #4: Establish Your Social Media Objectives
Knowing your audience, competition, and ideal platforms will help you determine the right objectives and goals for your campaign. Establish the purpose of each social media strategy to maintain clarity throughout each campaign and improve the likelihood of gaining more customers. Setting objectives also helps with metrics and results tracking.
How to Navigate Objectives
Many social media marketing goals center around:
- Brand awareness
- Follower counts
- Follower engagement
- Lead generation
- Website traffic
It can become too ambitious to strive to achieve every one of those goals. Choose one or two of your company’s most meaningful or beneficial goals and create a strategy around them.
You’ll also see more success with your goals if you keep them specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timed—in other words, make sure they are SMART. Check out our recent article that explains the importance of SMART goals.
Ready to change the way you set your social media goals? Talk to the digital pros at M&R Marketing! 478-621-4491
Step #5: Customize Content for Each Platform
Here’s the fun part: creating the content for each platform you plan to use. Content types can include:
- Live Videos
- Long-Form Videos
- Short-Form Videos
If you’re unsure which formats to choose, look at what your competitors use. Are they posting short-form videos, or do they lean more toward infographics? Do some of their posts get more engagement than others? Study your competition to learn what content types work among your audience. Be sure not to copy them, though. Create your own content around what you have learned from your research. (This is why steps 1 and 2 are so important!)
Also, use the right content types on the right platforms. While article sharing is suitable for Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, you’ll want to adapt your message for TikTok, YouTube, or Instagram. Consider creating an infographic with the article’s main points for Instagram or make a video summarizing the article for TikTok or YouTube.
Choosing the Right Messaging
It can be hard knowing what message to present with each post you make. You want your posts to be relevant, fresh, and resonant to your audience. The 80-20 rule is a helpful guide as you plan your content.
Break your content messaging up into two categories:
80% of your content should entertain and educate your audience, and 20% should promote your brand. People use social media for entertainment purposes, after all, and global stats show that 57% of users report learning more life skills from social media than from a university. Appeal to your audience with content styles they’re familiar with and apply relevant and interesting messaging. (And promote yourself along the way!)
For quality content, rely on the copywriters, designers, and digital pros at M&R Marketing. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org today!
Step #6: Create a Posting Plan
It’s crucial to post regularly (1-2 times a day) at times when your target audience is most likely to see it. This increases your reach and likelihood of engagement. Audience behavior on social media varies between industries, but companies like CoSchedule have conducted studies that show ideal times to post for industries on each platform.
It’s also important to create a content calendar. Since social media management is a significant and time-consuming endeavor, it’s wise to plan a posting schedule and maintain a content calendar.
Step #7: Stay Engaged Throughout Every Campaign
Audiences need to see that your company is involved with your social media accounts. They should know that your company is invested in them and their experience with your socials.
Reply to messages as promptly as possible. Answer questions, engage with comments, and respond to positive and negative feedback to show that you are listening and available. Users respond well to accounts that stay engaged. On the flip side, they are likely to develop negative opinions of companies that are consistently quiet or unresponsive on social media.
Step #8: Track Your Results
The main point of your social media advertising efforts is to improve metrics and maximize ROIs, right? The only way to know if you succeeded is to track your progress on every platform and evaluate the performance of your SMART goals.
Did some posts perform better than others? Did certain media formats receive more interactions? By evaluating how your campaign performed in accordance with your goals, you can work to strengthen future strategies and refocus your objectives if necessary for an even better ROI.
Let M&R Guide Your Business Toward a Successful Social Media Advertising Strategy
The full-service in-house digital team at M&R Marketing is ready to help your company get the most out of your social media advertising efforts. From planning your strategies to creating quality posts and utilizing the ideal platforms for your audience, we will help you achieve SMART goals and drive conversions.