Social media marketing is leveraging the power of social media to connect with your audience. Social media marketing helps you to build your brand, increase your sales, and helps drive traffic to your website.
Publishing amazing content to your social media, listening and connecting with your audience, analyzing results, and running ads on your social media posts, fall under the purview of social media marketing.
You all know about the major social media networks in the world right now. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat, and most importantly Youtube.
With so many social networking websites, it comes extremely difficult for marketers to follow through and create content individually and post to all these social networking websites. This gives to the rise of social media management tools.
There are tools like Hootsuite which helps you by enabling you to manage all your social media accounts in one place saving you a lot of time and energy.
Evolution of social media marketing
Social media marketing started when businesses started publishing content on social media to generate traffic back to their websites. They hoped that this would help increase their sales.
It not only ended up increasing their sales but also became something more than a place to just broadcast content.
Nowadays, all major businesses use social media to get to know their customers better. They monitor what their customers are conversing about their brand or niche.
Businesses wanting to understand how well they are doing on social media would analyze their reach.
Businesses willing to target a specific set of customers would run targeted ads.
This is the evolution of social media marketing and management in brief.
5 pillars of social media marketing
Before you jump right in and publish something on social media, you need to take a step back and first think of a social media strategy.
What exactly are your goals?
You have to first decide what exactly you want to attain with the help of social media.
Is it brand awareness you are looking for, is it increasing website traffic you are interested in? Is it engagement around your brand that you are seeking? Are you seeking to create a community around your brand or looking at customer support via social media?
Which platforms will be your primary focus?
When starting, it’s best to choose a few social media platforms from the several existing platforms on which your target audience might be on.
What are the types of content you want to share?
You need to figure out the kind of content you are willing to share. Do you want to share images, links, or videos? Will your content be educational or entertaining?
Creating a marketing persona is where every good social media marketer starts.
The marketing person is not fixed and can be changed or tweaked anytime according to how your social media campaign performs.
For this, you need to create a proper social media strategy and a social media marketing plan!
People start to have a tiny but persistent presence on social media accounts. Sharing content on social media is even simpler than publishing a blog post.
It’s exactly how you share posts to your own Facebook profile. The only difference is that you need to plan most of your content ahead of time instead of creating seldom and spontaneously.
To maximize reach, you need to publish content valuable to your audience at the right time and frequency.
A legion of social media publishing tools helps you publish your content on automation at your preferred timing. This not only helps you save time but also lets you reach more audiences. The audience who are more likely to like your content.
The more your business grows on social media the more will conversations around your brand grow. More and more people will like to comment and share on your social media posts.
More and more people will tag you in social media posts or send you messages directly.
Some people even talk about brands without tagging the brands. Social media conversations need to be monitored by you.
For every positive comment, you have the opportunity to do something surprising and delightful to the positive commentator.
You can also offer support and set a situation right for the negative comments before it becomes a massive problem later on.
All notifications across all social media platforms need to be monitored by you but that isn’t very efficient. You also won’t be able to see the posts which reference your brand but people who haven’t tagged you.
This is why you need to use social media listening and engagement tools. These tools will bring all the conversations in one place for you to view and respond to at your leisure.
When you are marketing on social media, you need a very good grip on reading analytics.
Analytics help you figure out how many people you have reached with your posts. It also gives information about engagement and how well your posts are performing.
Did you reach more people than last month? Did you get positive mentions by people? Did people use the hashtag of your brand on their social posts?
Analytics reveal all of this. All social media platforms have some basic analytics built into them. If you need more in-depth analytics, you can to use a wide range of social media analytics tools.
It’s time to address the elephant in the room now.
Advertising is a way to reach a wide set of audience by running ads on social media. Social media ads let you target and reach a wide audience.
You can only use this trick to grow your campaign if you have sufficient funds though. You can specify who to display the ads to specifically and the social media platforms are so powerful, that they display the ads only to the specified people!
Using the ads platform, you can create target ads based on audience interests, demographics, behavior, and any other factors you wish to consider.
Here we learned what exactly is social media marketing. How social media marketing evolved and the pillars social media marketing is based on.