Social media accounts for 27 percent of all time spent online and has become a popular way for customers to discover and research brands, and for marketers to reach out to potential customers. 93 percent of marketers currently say they use social media for business, and in 2013 there was a surge in popularity of new networks like Pinterest, Vine, and Instagram. This year, expect more sites, specifically Google+, to gain additional traction and become a people’s daily lives. Before businesses jump into social media, here are the five essential steps to success in social media marketing.
1. Start with a Plan
1 in 4 small businesses have no strategy in place for social media marketing. If a business wants to be successful in driving sales and leads from social, they need to have a clear digital strategy that incorporates social media.
Each social network has different audience demographics, so businesses should strategically choose which outlets to utilize based on their target customers. Examples of demographic differences include:
- 67 percent of people online use Facebook, making it the top social network
- Facebook users are 60 percent female
- The average Twitter user is a 28-year-old woman
- Instagram users are most likely to be between 18 to 29
- Pinterest skews heavily female, with 80 percent of users being women
- Pinterest attracts women with more education and higher income
Think about your customer by outlining the personality types that are likely to purchase your product or service, including overall lifestyle, and add value for them online.
Once the appropriate social channels selected, take a look at what is working for competitors, and start to create a content calendar. This helps businesses organize, plan ahead and stick to a regular social content schedule.
2. Create Quality Content
Quality content engages audiences, is shared across multiple platforms, and garners more interest in a brand. It also makes a difference when it comes to SEO.
So what it quality content? It is:
- Relevant to the target audience
Here is an example of quality social media content from Tic Tac.