A Beginner’s Guide to Social Media Marketing
The rise of social media has led to a whole new way of marketing. With social media, there is an endless possibility of what can be achieved. This can be overwhelming for a beginner with minimal or no experience in Social Media Marketing.
In this article, we will cover all you need to know as a beginner venturing into the world of social media marketing.
What is Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing involves marketing products or services on any social media platform. This is a form of digital marketing. It cuts out the tedious process of moving from one place to another to promote a product or service. This way companies can reach a larger audience both young and old regardless of their location.
Social media marketing also allows companies to promote themselves the way they would like to be perceived. This means that you can choose your tone of voice. You can also create and share content that describes your values as a brand or business. Many existent social media platforms have in-built marketing and data analytics tools for successful social media marketing.
These platforms include Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and so on. These platforms function in different ways therefore you need to understand them to use them the right way.
Key Factors of Social Media Marketing
It is not enough to know the basic meaning of what social media marketing is. It is necessary to know and understand the key factors involved. Let’s find out what these factors are and the role they play in effective social media marketing.
- Strategy. The first step toward social media marketing is to decide what platform to use, the type of content you intend to post, and when to post them.
- Content creation. Once you have come up with a working strategy, the next step will be to create the content. The content can either be a video, a photo, or a combination of both. Video contents should be created with time limitations in mind depending on the chosen platform.
- Monitoring engagement. The engagement on every post tells you a lot about what the public thinks of your product, service, brand, or business at large.
- Using analytic tools. Engagement is not only measured by the number of likes and comments but other factors like impression, number of reaches, e.t.c. the use of social media analytics tools will give you a complete analysis of your content performance.
- Advertising. Promoting your content via social media ads is a great way to reach your desired target audience. This means you get to choose the demography of your audience and speak to them directly without spending a lot.
Why is Social Media Marketing Important
The world is ever-changing and our society of today has witnessed a significant increase in the number of social media users. According to Datareportal, about 58.4% of the world population uses social media and an average of 2hrs 27 mins is spent daily on these platforms.
With such high records, it is safe to say that social media has come to stay. Brands, businesses, and companies that understand the power of social media leverage it to the best of their interest.
Thus, Social media market is important because the world has evolved beyond town hall meetings and regular ball events. A lot of folks out there are becoming more private and less accessible in public. Therefore, if you must reach your target audience conveniently, social media marketing is the most effective way to go about it.
The benefits of social media marketing are numerous, below are some of the expected benefits.
1. Creating brand awareness
Social media marketing helps you to create awareness of what your products or services are and what your business or brand stands for. People will always choose brands and businesses they understand better over those they don’t.
All the tools you need to create such awareness are readily available on various social media platforms. All you have to do is create and post relevant content on your social media page. Choose the right time of the day when traffic is high and be consistent. The content must be informative, real, and engaging. Talk about your values, goals, what makes your business or brand different, and your success stories.
2. Learn about your customers
Social media will help you understand your customers and their response to your product or service. You can learn about their buying habits. This includes what they are buying, when and where, and how often they buy.
This information comes in handy for every marketer. If you want to sell your product or service then you need to understand your potential or existing customers. Once you have understood your customers, you can tailor your product or services in a way that appeals to them. This way, you can get them to purchase what you are selling with ease.
3. Promote your brand on a budget
Unlike in the past, social media has made marketing cheaper and more effective. Now you can promote your brand without breaking the bank. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are the most used platform for brand promotion.
These platforms have built-in tools for promotion or marketing. They also have a large user base thus, your content can reach a wide range of people. It doesn’t cost much to boost your content to reach more people. Using SEO hacks can help you promote your brand.
To achieve this, you need to create valuable content with the right keywords that can get the attention of your target audience.
4. To increase your website visits
Social media marketing can help to increase your website visits. Include the link to your website in your content. This way your audience can access your website with ease.
Without linking your website, your content cannot achieve its full purpose. The higher the interaction on your post, the higher the chances of getting more website visits. You can convert website visitors into leads and customers.
Do not forget to shorten your links before including them in your post. Long links often come off as overbearing. You do not want your audience to feel that you only care about what is in their pocket. Shorten your links and post at the appropriate time.
5. Finding and connecting with potential business partners
Social media has made it possible to connect with people across the globe without physical contact. Depending on the type of people you are looking to meet. You can choose from any of the thriving social media platforms.
Facebook has over 2.9B users, this makes it the biggest and most used social media platform in the world. Facebook is a great platform to meet people from different walks of life and for different purposes.
Instagram on the other hand is better suited for content creators. So if you are looking to connect with content creators, you know what platform to signup with.
Twitter which is a microblogging platform can help you connect to the right kind of brand and business owners.
LinkedIn should never be left out if you are looking to connect with businesses.
Tips and Tricks of Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing can be a walkover if you know what you are doing. As a beginner, you may be a little lost on how to get your marketing right. Here are some tips to help place you on the right track.
1. Define your objectives
Success begins with having clear-cut goals and objectives. You need to know what you want to achieve. Ask yourself what you expect to achieve out of your marketing campaign. That would help you to figure out what your goals and objectives are.
To make them even more definite, write them down. When you write down your goals, the picture of what you want becomes more precise and definite. They are no longer just fuzzy thoughts in your head but a clear vision.
2. Study your audience
How can you get your audience to buy what you are selling if you do not understand who they are? Decide who your target audience is and study them. You can do this by creating a persona of who they are. Ask yourself what gender they are, age range, social class, buying habits, needs and wants.
The best way to get the answers to your question is by interacting with them. Choose platforms where you can access your audience with ease. Respond to their comments, and ask direct questions to find out what their preferences are.
Once you’ve understood your audience, everything else will fall in place.
3. Be intentional about your post
It will do you no good if you create and post content randomly. Create content that aligns with the platform you have chosen. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and their likes are all different and should be treated uniquely.
As much as you can, incorporate great images and videos when creating your content. Not many people like to read and wordy content is often thought to be boring. Using pictures and videos to describe your content will entertain, captivate and encourage your audience to buy from you.
Make sure your post is speaking directly to your audience. Also, describe your post and add headlines when necessary. Content with these features is more effective than others.
4. Be consistent
How often do you post on your page? If you want to build followership, then you should consider posting more often on your page. Different platforms will determine how often you need to post.
Hence, Twitter which is an interactive platform may require your attention a little bit more than others. Social media marketing thrives when your audience can see how committed you are. Posting and interacting often on your page will help you develop your social media presence
Most people will prefer to do business with brands and organizations they are familiar with.
5. Create or join communities
Social communities are a good way to meet and interact with your target audience. Starting one on your own as a beginner might be too much to handle. Find communities on various platforms where your audience is and become a part of them.
Facebook is known for its numerous groups. LinkedIn and Instagram should not be left out. Find groups that share a common interest with your brand and become and become an active members.
6. Promote your post
With the vast majority of people online and much content posted by the second, your post may not get to your target audience. If this is the case, your content may yield little or no result.
Therefore, promoting your content is a great way to get your content across to the right people. You can share your content via different social media platforms, and send newsletters to your email list. Seek more followers by giving out valuables to your followers.
Furthermore, we talked about creating or joining communities on these platforms earlier. Leverage your presence in such groups to promote your business.
7. Choose the right tools
You need to know the performance of your content and areas that need adjustment. There is a long list of tools available for different purposes.
- content creation tools e.g, BuzzSumo, Tailwind, and Tagboard.
- Lead generator tools e.g, Tweepi, OptinMonster, Smash Ballon e.t.c.
- Security tools e.g, LastPass and ZeroFOX.
- Analytical tools e.g, Facebook Analytics, Twitter Analytics, Agora Pulse, CrowdBooster, e.t.c.
- Content curator Tools e.g, Buffer, Everypost, MeetEdgar, SocialFlow, e.t.c.
- Customer relationship management software e.g HubSpot, Salesforce, Zoho, Saleamate, e.t.c.
It doesn’t matter how many tools you use. At the end of the day, all that matters is the result. Choose tools that are beneficial to your goals.
Social media marketing is vast but quite easy to accomplish if you know the right thread to pull. As a beginner, you do not have to be perfect on your first attempt. However, having access to helpful materials can help you do a pretty decent job. I hope you find this article helpful as you kickstart your journey.