Perceptions of Social Media
What can we learn from Social Media?
Over the past number of years, I have taken on the role as a social media strategist and in that time, I have learned a lot of new skills but the biggest learning curve for me is how people interact and their perceptions when it comes to social media.
We all understand that nobody likes things pushed down their throat, but yet companies continually try to do this when posting on social media. When I speak to clients for the first time, I always ask them what are they trying to achieve with social media.
Their answer is nearly always the same:
- Everyone is on social media and I need to be there.
- That is where my customers are.
- I want to sell online.
- I need to be on all platforms.
Some of these answers are right and some are so wrong. Before you start an online campaign you need to decide what objectives you want to achieve from all the work you are going to put into this.
- Do you want to build your community?
- Do you want to create awareness of your brand or product?
- Do you want to generate sales and conversions?
- Do you want to engage with your customers/clients?
The next piece of the puzzle is to understand where your customers hang out online. Are they on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or YouTube? When are they online? What is the best time to get their attention? You should invest time creating a Buyer Persona of your customers, this will help you be more targeted in your campaign and more focused.
When you have figured this out you can then concentrate your time on one platform and when you have mastered that one expand your reach out to the other platforms to increase your brand or product awareness. Doing this will give you a better understanding of new potential clients you can gain.
Like in traditional marketing, in order for customers to buy from you, you first need to build up relationships with them. Start conversations, interact and answer questions, give some advice. This will demonstrate your knowledge in your chosen field. Use the 80/20 rule, 80% advice and 20% sales, if you stick to this rule, you can build strong relationships and engagement which will increase likes, followers, members and subscribers.
To create awareness of your brand or product use simple steps to help people understand what you do or what your product is. A rule of thumb I always use is, would this post interest me if I was browsing? With this in mind, create your post that engages your audience. Each social media platform has a different tone of voice so remember this when you are creating content.
Some businesses are very good when it comes to adding a call to action (CTA). Remember a call to action does not have to be a freebie or a discount. It can be a number of different things. Every post you create should have some sort of CTA and I would advise you to mix it up. Try a few of these examples:
- Add a link to a landing page on your website that is relevant to your post.
- Download Ebook or white paper.
- Share a link to a blog you wrote.
- Invite them to subscribe to your newsletter.
- Add a link to an event you will be exhibiting or speaking at.
- Give a Discount on one of your product or services.
This call to action should always direct back to a specific landing page on your website and people are nosey and will always have a look around, your website after they have found the reason for going to it in the first place.
A golden rule with websites is, if it is easy to navigate, simple, clean and useful to the customer they will use it and return which increases your ranking on google and converts to enquiries or sales.