Recently we shared how social media is quite different than traditional marketing. This marketing effort is intended to build awareness, drive engagement, develop loyal brand ambassadors and serve as a key facet to your integrated marketing plan. And it’s table stakes in today’s socially savvy world.
Millennials and Gen Z account for more than one-third of the workforce, with that figure expected to increase to more than half in the next decade, making the younger generations the most dominant in the workplace. And keep in mind 48 percent of younger generation managers are your decision makers at a director level or higher.* As consumers and business decision-makers continue to get younger and younger, having a solid digital marketing and social media marketing game are the crucial first steps in your marketing foundation. They are what everything else should be built upon.
Think about it like a house. You wouldn’t build a house by simply adding rooms on top of stilts without a solid foundation in place because they would all tumble to the ground in a heap. The same thing is true for marketing: Focusing on marketing tactics without building your website and social media foundation first ends in the same result. And by the way, we can help with both! Just give us a holler.
So, how do you ensure you’re following social media best practices for your business to stay on point with your brand’s personality and the expectations of each social platform? You can start by checking out this social media best practices infographic we put together, or even reach out to us to help with your entire social media strategy, campaign and editorial calendars, execution, community management and analytics reporting.
We often get asked to share social media best practices with our clients as part of our marketing engagement or social media marketing strategy work. So, we thought, why not make those same best practices available to you?!
It all starts with the right approach, which looks like this:
Develop a social strategy that not only supports your overarching marketing strategy, but also your business goals and objectives. Everything should align from top to bottom.
Determine overarching key messages that reflect your brand’s personality and attributes, while ensuring any content you develop reinforces your primary messaging, keeping everything consistent in your marketing efforts.
Craft your editorial calendar by month, showing all platforms, date/day, subject, copy, call-to-action, hashtags and any associated links. This ensures you have the full snapshot of the month across all platforms – again, to ensure marketing consistency.
Post unique content on each platform. Let me say that again: Post unique content on each platform. This is important. Why? Because each platform has its own language and expectations, which we dive into in the infographic. It’s also important to ensure your content varies by channel because chances are the same people will follow you on all your platforms, and they’ll quickly lose interest or unfollow you if your content is the same across the board. It’s okay to post similar topics, but vary your copy.There is one time when it’s acceptable to cross-post the same content: If you have a social media channel and do not have the resources to devote to it, but want it to stay active, you can cross-post to ensure there’s activity on the channel.
Be consistent in your posting schedule. Due to the way the platform algorithms work, consistency is king. After 30 days or so of consistent posting, the algorithms will realize you’re being active, and recognize your content as ‘valid.’ This helps with organic visibility, as well as helps your audience know when to expect new info from you.
Engage with your audience. This is not a post-it-and-forget-it kinda gig. If you want a loyal audience and attract the right kind of followers (those who will engage with your brand), then you must engage with them. It’s called ‘social’ for a reason.Think about your social channels as a cocktail party or networking event. You wouldn’t walk up to someone, and say: “Hi, my name is Bob, and I sell widgets. Wanna buy one?” You’d ease into that. Get to know more about them and their interests. “Hi, my name is Bob. What’s yours?” You engage them back, ask questions, get to know them, understand them, and that will help you eventually present your products/solutions.And keep in mind, the rule of thumb on social is: Post nine non-product- or solution-oriented posts to one that ‘sells.’ And please don’t brand your posts. Organic social is about connecting – not selling/advertising. Save that for your paid social or digital ads. The more authentic and real you can be, the better.Additionally, your audience may have questions or comment on your posts. Answer them, comment back, engage with them, and you’ll start to develop a much more loyal following.
Monitor quarterly analytics/trends. Quarterly is the key in that sentence. Social media is fickle. One month engagement and impressions may be up, the next down. Typically, you’re going to see a fluctuation of 5% either way, which is considered ‘static.’ The objective is to grow the KPIs positively, and keeping an eye on the analytics quarterly allows you to see trends and adjust content accordingly.
So, check out the rest of the best practices to keep in mind by channel in the infographic, and then feel free to reach out with questions, to request a social media audit or even engage us to take social off your plate!
As always stay tuned until the next time we go Off the Radar.
*How millennials and Gen Z are reshaping the future of the workforce, CNBC.
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