Social media has inevitably become the boon and bane of our life. Social media has led the digital transformation of the noughties with the introduction of giants like Facebook and Youtube paving the way for the rest. As of 2019, 3.5 billion people were using social media platforms worldwide which is 45% of the total population, and that number is projected to grow over the next decade. Social media platforms have literally changed the landscape of our social and professional lives. With billions of monthly users, they have become the latest battleground for enterprises to showcase their best and latest.
The success stories of big & small brands leveraging their social media accounts to create buzz-worthy marketing campaigns are aplenty. The social media marketplace can get overwhelmingly crowded, however, the real struggle for brands is to build recognition in this crowded space. It can seem like a daunting task to build a brand profile that would be memorable in consumer consciousness with so many noises demanding our attention in different directions. But it is possible to create a niche for oneself set apart from the daily and mundane. The creation of your space in the cut-throat competitive world of social media begins with something very basic- understanding your target audience.
Understanding your target audience
To create and market a successful product, tangible or intangible, you need to have a nuanced understanding of the market that you plan to target. It’s always a process of trial and error to reach your desired goal. One has to be adaptable enough to modify their strategy to aptly accommodate the changing consumer behaviour and patterns. Research and comparative data are very important to establish a sound and plausible strategy followed by rigorous testing before you can implement it. Constant monitoring and evolvement with consumer trends is the way to stay pertinent. Once the groundwork of establishing target audience is completed, the next step is to determine the best possible channels to reach and engage with your potential customers.
With the growth of digital marketing, diversifying your social media strategy to delve into all platforms that can get you in touch with your audience is the only route to validation. The broader your social media presence, the greater access you have to potential consumers.
Digital marketing is slowly but surely taking over the more traditional marketing spheres. This trend is spearheaded by the transparency, ease and cost-effectiveness factors offered by social media platforms. Traditional advertising and marketing strategies that cost a pretty penny (read millions of dollars) are being overtaken by social media marketing that relies on wit, creativity and visually appealing creations for promotion. The perk of social media advertising is that it bridges the gap of communication between the brand and the consumer, henceforth driving user engagement. Gone are the days that you write to companies with your queries and complaints and wait weeks if not months on end to hear back. Now with social media, it’s all instantaneous. There is a ton of insight to be gained from consumer feedback and it would ultimately help you create a better version of your product.
Designing content that resonates with your audience is a key take away from all successful social media advertising campaigns. Whether its a mass media campaign or a millennial targeted one, the relevance of the content plays an important role in your conversion rates. If your audience can’t relate to what’s being targeted at them, they will definitely not buy it or even talk about it. In an age of social media influencers where a word of mouth can be a positive or negative tectonic shift for a brand’s name, you definitely don’t want to take your content lightly.
Every design detail from content to colour scheme to font style to the look and feel of the brand’s social media page adds value to your brand and it’s a point of differentiation between you and the competitors. Let’s take the example of millennial pink colour. Just incorporating this colour scheme on your products or social media site can see your web traffic rise significantly as it’s hugely popular among the new-age consumers and generates an incredible response online every time.
Putting in a substantial amount of research and development to learn about the leanings of your target audience can help you build a reliable and loyal base. The content has to match the platform that it subsides in. A professional platform like LinkedIn would require a different style of message compared to a Facebook post. On the other hand, Instagram campaigns would need something visually compelling to attract traffic. So the content strategy has to be evaluated based on the platforms being used. In this instance, one size fits all definitely does not apply.
Social media marketing strategy
Although startups and new enterprises are most likely to focus on SEO for organic traffic to drive growth, it’s vital to tap into the opportunities of paid traffic. Boosting social profiles through ads on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube is quickly becoming a focal strategy for businesses as it gives far more visibility and higher conversion rates compared to its alternative. Yes, it can be expensive but with high competition one just can’t rely on going viral to catch the attention of consumers. To tap into a prospective market you need to be in the right place at the right time to connect with your audience. Paid traffic affords you that leverage.
Social media influencers have a lot of sway in the digital world. Their word is the holy grail for their followers. Collaborating with stalworth influencers within your industry can help you connect with the right people. It can effectively bolster your campaign. When working with influencers the focus should always be on finding a figure who is reliable and their principle aligns with that of your brands. Publicity is always good but controversy and infamy aren’t. So any association with controversy or controversial influencers can backfire and prove to be detrimental to the brand’s growth. Choosing collaborations wisely is definitely the key to running an effective and successful campaign.
From big to small companies, everyone is using social media to promote their products and services. And Instagram has proven itself to be the king of visual content. Instagram has become the ground zero for the most buzz-worthy and sensational viral marketing campaigns across the world. Visual imagery has a longer-lasting impact than written content. This privilege puts Instagram as a prime choice for the hyped as well as the up and coming businesses.
With monthly active users of one billion, Instagram has become a lucrative marketplace. In fact, 90% of its users follow a business account. It just goes to prove that consumers have evolved from being mere observers to keen, informed buyers that want to hear from and about brands. The introduction of the IGTV feature has enabled long description videos to be uploaded to the platform. And that’s helping brands to send across a better and detailed message to their audience. Utilizing these features will help build more brand cognizance among followers and attract new ones.
Social media analytics
To be a standout in the crowded marketplace of social media don’t just rely on superficial enhancements. Platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & YouTube have analytical tools that help you track the social performance metrics of your brand. The only way to improve is to know where you’re lacking. These tools give valuable insights into the real-time performance of the brand and can help to strategize the next plan of action to achieve better results.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is also crucial to ensure that you are on-trend to connect with your dedicated consumers. It’s often the part that gets ignored the most by new companies but it’s pivotal to the success of a brand. Optimization is a learning curve that could provide a deep and comprehensive understanding of ongoing consumer trends & behaviour and help you adopt a more concise and targeted strategy. There are innumerable SEO tools at your disposal, free and paid, with the intent and purpose to help you become an authoritative figure on all search engines. Utilize them to optimize your content to reach a wider and eager audience.
Summarizing this post, making a mark on social media starts with in-depth research and analysis of your target market and identifying the ticks and off-puts of your audience. Create and test a hypothesis of a marketing strategy that resonates and showcases the essence of the brand in the best light possible.
Speak the language of your audience and stage yourself to be relevant in a crowded space through bold, innovative and challenging campaigns that break or at least nudges the status quo. The brand’s tone of voice must be consistent. It should be easily identifiable in a sea of limelight hungry competition. Be prudent and utilize all the tools available to make the most out of your buck. Distinguish yourself by being the one who never fails to evolve with time. Because ultimately in a world of ever-shrinking attention span, all that everyone looks forward to is the next big thing that breaks the internet.
At Alkye, we help clients amplify their social media marketing strategies to reach more potential customers and build brand awareness across all major social media platforms. As a digital marketing company, we design strategies that help businesses to stay ahead of the curve in a competitive landscape.