The short answer? No. But, having a social media strategy does play a large part in an overall digital marketing strategy. On average, over 90% of marketers see having a social media strategy as important to their business; just below this percentage say they use it to increase their exposure and approximately 80% of these have seen positive results from doing this. However, almost all of those 90% are still unsure of the most effective social media tactics. Luckily for you reading this, I’m here to give you an insight on the best tactics to achieve a superior social media strategy. Below, I’ve shared my top must-dos and debunked the most common social media myths.
The Must-Dos of a Social Media Strategy
Find the Right Platform for You
There are plenty of social media platforms to choose from nowadays. Some platforms may be perfect for your business, some may not work at all; test out platforms to see what works best for you. Over 90% of marketers see Facebook as the most important platform for business, however, this doesn’t mean it’s definitely going to work for your company. Take a look at your competitors to see what platforms are working best for them. Buzzfeed’s Tasty is a prime example of Facebook working perfectly for a business; they have almost 95 million people following their page and also get very strong engagements. National Geographic, on the other hand, have found that Instagram works best for them; they have over 82 million people following to see their fantastic photography.
It’s called ‘social’ media for a reason. With automation tools becoming so common, it’s extremely easy to lose the social aspect of social media and you can begin sounding a little robotic. Make it a priority in your social media strategy to sound like a human. Automation tools are great to save on time but make sure you also take the time to engage with your audience. Seen a comment on a post? Reply to it! Has a customer left a good review? Thank them for it! You’ll be amazed how positive the results can be from doing something that can take all of a few minutes.
Make it Visual
In general, visual content performs much better than plain text. Videos, in particular, are becoming a lot more popular on social media and achieve great interaction. Images and GIFs also perform really well for posts on social media. If you’ve got lots of information you want to share on social media, try turning the information into an infographic to make it more visual. Don’t become too comfortable with a certain type of post, either; make sure you use a mixture of text, images and videos so that your content doesn’t become boring and predictable.
Monitor the Results
It’s all well and good having a social media strategy in place, but if it’s not working, you don’t want to be wasting time. Take some time at the end of each month to monitor the results of your social media activity. Many platforms now have easy-to-use analytics tools built into them, which show you the results of your activity. They can also give you a good idea of who your audience is, allowing you to tailor your content to this audience. If you find that your strategy is working, great; if it isn’t, think about what you could do differently, such as using a different platform.
Debunking the Social Media Strategy Myths
You Should Be on All Social Media Platforms
Possibly the biggest myth of them all! As I mentioned earlier, not all platforms will work for everyone and, in fact, social media can sometimes not work at all. It’s all down to who your target audience is. If you have a very large target audience comprised of both males and females of all ages, being on multiple platforms is likely to be beneficial for you. If you have a very niche target audience, you may only need to be present on a couple, or even just one social media platform. Do your research before implementing a social media strategy and then test and measure what works best for you.
You Don’t Need a Website If You’re on Social Media
If you bought a new outfit that you want to wear frequently, would you throw away your old favourites? No, because it’s still important to have the alternatives. It’s exactly the same with social media and websites. Although social media is new and lots of people are very active on it, it doesn’t mean that websites have become irrelevant. If you take a look into your website analytics, you’re likely to see that quite a bit of traffic has come from social media. In addition to this, if you use them in conjunction with each other, you’re likely to rank higher in Google. Not only this, but a website can also increase the trust from your customers; it emphasises the fact that you are a legitimate business. If you really want to make the most of your company’s potential, combine a good website with an effective social media strategy.
Lots of Followers Is Key
Sure, having lots of followers on social media looks great, but are those followers doing anything? Engagement from your followers is much more important than the amount you have. As with everything, go for quality over quantity. Make sure your social media strategy is getting your audience engaged to minimise the risk of having lots of ghost followers. Make your content interesting, ask your audience questions to get them involved, engage with them, and you’ll be on your way to having lots of quality followers.
Hashtags are great for increasing your exposure, but don’t get sucked into the myth of it being necessary to use lots of them. Although they can be handy, they’re not always essential or relevant in a social media strategy. Again, it’s all about quality over quantity. If you know a hashtag provides you with a good exposure and it’s relevant to your post, use it. If you’re having to force a hashtag into a post, it’s likely that it’s not relevant. Don’t overdo the hashtags; try and stick to a maximum of 3 and never have more hashtags than plain text in a post.
But remember, there’s much more to a superior internet presence than having a killer social media page. To be a king, you must be able to serve all of your subjects; that involves having a great website, being able to run effective campaigns, and nagging your customers to leave you great reviews.
If you’re looking for some expert help with your social media strategy or overall online presence, get in touch with the team at Active Internet Marketing (UK). We’ve got a team of social media wizards ready to work their magic on your strategy. Give us a call on 0800 772 0650 or fill out our online contact form.