Welcome to the Ultimate Social Media Marketing Guide. In this guide, we will explore:
- What is Social Media Marketing?
- What are the benefits of Social Marketing?
- Social Media Marketing Trends in 2020?
- Social Media Marketing Strategy
We will discuss everything related to social media marketing and how a brand offline or online can use it effectively and secure benefits.
So, ready? Let’s dive in.
Social Media has been around for a long time but came into popularity in 2004, when Facebook was launched. Ever since the growth of social media expanded exponentially and today we have:
- +65 marketing platforms right from Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, Linkedin, Tumblr, Tik Tok to Hashtag, Tencent QQ, We Chat, and Myspace
- 2.47 billion people are on the social media rail as of today
The above two astonishing stats clearly depict that it is extremely important for brands to adopt social media marketing in order to be more accessible on the internet.
Social Media really changed the way marketing is done and has given birth to various forms of marketing like:
In this guide, we will cover in detail every important aspect of social media marketing.
So let’s get started.
WHAT IS SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING?
Before understanding the term “Social Media Marketing”, let’s understand what is Social Media?
Social Media is basically a pool of users who interact and engage online on different platforms called Social Media platforms. The users are able to post, share and react on content posted by them.
The content can be any video, photo, music, slideshow or simple block of texts with more than 400 emojis and feelings to choose from. In simple words, social media is basically a virtual world where users can interact online.
In other words:
“ Social Media is a virtual platform where users can chat, video call, share content and interact irrespective of their location or geographical boundaries”.
So coming to our first point: What is social media marketing?
Social Media is a type of marketing where we share our ideas and content with the users ( social media) on different social media platforms depending on their interests. In other words, it is the marketing method with the help of which you can:
- Get traffic on your website (via sharing a blog link on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter)
- Share your views and opinions with different high profile personalities (via Twitter)
- Build a community to which you can promote your services and sell your products
- List your products and sell online with the help of ads
- And a lot more
Social Media Marketing is the best way to promote your brand by creating and sharing relevant content to your audience. The foundation of your social media marketing depends on the type of content you’re creating. For example:
- If you share memes you’ll attract an audience who are interested in humor
- If you share posts and videos about “shoes”, you’ll attract an audience who are deeply interested in footwear
- If you create content on social awareness you’ll engage an audience who are into social reforms
- If you curate and create content about your brand and how it can benefit the users, you’ll end up creating a community who can be your potential customers
So the bottom line is the type of content you brainstorm is responsible for the audience you attract. And the audience you attract and engage will be responsible for your online growth, so create content wisely.
SOME MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING
Before going deeper into social media marketing, it is important to acknowledge some misconceptions about social media marketing:
#1 SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING IS ALL ABOUT POSTING CONTENT ON DIFFERENT SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS
This is a common misconception among some people that social media marketing is simply bombarding the audience with content on different social media channels. Actually the type of content you create decide the type of audience you’ll build.
And by simply posting irrelevant content you’ll create a miscellaneous audience who will or may not be interested in your product. Therefore it is extremely important to create quality content for your audience.
#2 SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING TAKES A LONG TIME TO GIVE RESULTS
Though social media is a good long term marketing strategy a brand must follow, it doesn’t take decades to see results. In fact, if executed properly your social media marketing strategy can yield results right within the six months.
With the help of insights you can measure:
- Engagement rate
- Audience Growth
#3 MY TARGET AUDIENCE IS NOT ON SOCIAL MEDIA
This is a complete myth and the best way to underestimate the power of social media. Actually, there are over 2.67 billion users on social media covering everyone; the ages, interests and demographics.
And by not creating social media profile you’re missing on such a large social network. So it is extremely important to invest time in creating social media presence for your business.
#4 BAD REVIEWS ON SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS WILL HARM MY BUSINESS REPUTATION
Many business owners are of the opinion that bad ratings can really harm their business reputation online. Actually, with the help of social media ratings, you can track your business performance and look for areas where there is room for improvement. This will actually help you in improving your services and give better customer service experience.
#5 SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING IS JUST A WAY TO MARKET YOUR BRAND ONLINE
Actually, social media marketing is more than advertising your brand on social media platforms. You can also utilize social media in:
- Placing orders for your customers
- Resolving customer complaints and queries
- Hiring the best talent available in your city
- Get leads online by running ads
#6 MORE HASHTAGS MEAN MORE REACH ON SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS
Generally, it is a misconception that using more hashtags can be helpful in reaching more people and thereby achieving social media fame.
The reality is the audience doesn’t prefer content with too many hashtags. And the best way to grow on social media is to use less and relevant hashtags.
Caption: Black coffee is love!
#mycoffee #ilovecoffee #coffeeisbae #healthycoffee #can’tlivewithoutcoffee #addictedtocoffee
#coffeeislife #coffeeaddict #promotecoffee #coffeeislove #can’tgowithoutcoffee
Caption: Do you know black coffee has tons of benefits for your health and it is a perfect pre-workout drink? Black coffee can really help you in:
Thanks to Brand X for sending the best black coffee in town, please follow the link in my bio to see product details.
#blackcoffee #blackcoffeeishealthy #healthtips #preworkouttips
Now, tell us which case will have a better conversion rate?
Yes, the second case because it has adequate content and relevant hashtags on black coffee are used. On the other side, the first case is bombarded with personified hashtags which makes it less appealing.
Let’s move on the next section and understand the benefits of social media marketing for your business.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING?
Till now we understand:
- What is social media marketing?
- Meaning of social media and social media marketing
- What are some misconceptions about social media marketing?
Now in this section, we will discuss the benefits of social media marketing and how brands can leverage this great online opportunity.
So, what are the benefits of social media marketing? Why brands should adopt social media marketing in their marketing plan?
First, let’s understand the benefits of social media marketing:
Social media marketing helps in:
- Making people aware of your brand
- Understanding the competition in the market and taking relevant actions to lead in the game
- Get more inbound traffic
- Get better leads and conversion rates
- Offering your audience a better and 24 × 7 reachable customer care service
- Build social signals to boost your SEO rankings
Let’s discuss each benefit one by one.
MAKING PEOPLE AWARE OF YOUR BRAND
Social media marketing is a brilliant way to tell your customers about your brand. By publishing relevant content in the form of video/images/blogs you’re actually reaching thousands of consumers who’ll further engage with your brand.
This will make the consumers aware of your brand and will reach out to you when they need your services/products.
Below are some interesting stats about social media marketing in Singapore:
- According to Hootsuite’s digital marketing report of Singapore, there is a total of 4.92 million internet users. Out of which 4.6 million are active social media users who are active on Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, and Twitter.
- Facebook ads in Singapore reach 4.3 million people on a daily basis
- The majority of the Singapore audience is between age 23 and 38
Clearly, this stats that adopting social media marketing in your marketing plan is more important than ever. As you don’t want to miss out on 4.6 million active social media users. Therefore it is extremely important to invest time in social media marketing and increase brand awareness.
How to increase brand awareness?
The following action plan will guide in developing brand awareness with the help of social media marketing.
- Make aFacebook Business page.
- Add all your details: Contact number, e-mail, location, website and opening hours
- Upload a clear and appealing cover photo describing the purpose of your brand
- Use your company logo as your profile picture
- Invite all your friends to like your page who know about your company. This will help us in getting an initial audience.
- Create a social media marketing strategy
- Start creating content according to desired audience interests and demographics.
- Research on the trends and use content marketing to create more engaging content.
- Images and videos run best on Facebook, so make sure to create and post images and videos regularly.
- Run facebook adswhen required in order to grow your audience and convert them into customers.
- Engage with your audience with the help of messages, Facebook live feature and stories.
- Run contests and giveaways to attract more consumers
- Don’t rely on a single social media strategy and continue experimenting on what is working best for you.
This will help you build good brand authority on Facebook in no time.
All the best!
UNDERSTANDING THE COMPETITION IN THE MARKET AND TAKING RELEVANT ACTIONS TO LEAD IN THE GAME
One of the major benefits of social media marketing is that it offers us metrics with the assistance of which we can trace our competition.
With the help of insights and analytics tools, we can dig into our competitor’s social media performance. This will help us in understanding:
- What type of content our competitor is focusing on?
- Who is the target audience?
- Is our competitor running ads on Facebook and Instagram?
These questions can be really helpful at the time of framing social media marketing strategy. And the focus behind the strategy will be to fill the gap in the competitor’s social media marketing strategy with the help of quality content.
How to look into competitors social media insights?
The following action plan will help you do a social media competitive analysis:
- Understand who is your competitor in the market.
- Analyze their website and the keywords they rank for.
- Now, go to their website and analyze social media profiles.
- Note down: the social media profiles, followers and their post frequency.
- Use SWOT analysis to make a manual report about their social media strategy.
Let’s discuss SWOT analysis before going to the sixth point:
SWOT analysis means analyzing your competitors:
- Strengths; what are the strengths of your challenger
- Weaknesses; what are the weak points
- Opportunities; How to leverage their weakness and turn it into an opportunity
- Threats; What are the areas the brand’s strategy can be a threat to yours?
6. Check how frequently your competitor is posting, what are the platforms they are
GET MORE INBOUND TRAFFIC
There are many methods to acquire decent website traffic:
- Writing search engine friendly content
- Using SEO to optimize your website properly
- Social Media Marketing
With the help of social media marketing, you can reach more versatile customers online and introduce your brand to more consumers. Let’s discuss the action plan:
Action plan to get more website traffic with the help of social media marketing
- Add your website link in all of your social media profiles.
- Add a button on your page, which users can click to open your website.
- Identify your audience interests and start curating content.
- Publish videos, case studies and blog posts with your audience which redirects them to your website.
- Run giveaways and contests; like register your e-mail address on our website and offer them something in return.
- Share your content in the relevant audience to grow your following as well as introduce them to your website.
- Be consistent in the process of creating quality content
- Ask for feedback.
In this way, you can grow your website traffic by 40%.
GET BETTER LEADS AND CONVERSION RATES
One of the major benefits of social media marketing is that you can use paid advertising to get more leads for your business. Posting content regularly on social media attracts recognition for your brand.
This recognition further helps in building relationships with a variety of people available on social media. Remember social media is all about building strong connections and business in all about good relationships and empathy between brand and customers.
So the better content marketing method you approach the easier it will be for you to make content solely based upon user intent and emotions.
OFFERING YOUR AUDIENCE A BETTER AND 24 × 7 REACHABLE CUSTOMER CARE SERVICE
Social media is a great way to communicate in a one-on-one medium. It helps the brand in understanding the queries of the user and addressing them personally.
And by resolving queries personally, the brand attracts loyal customers and keep them satisfied. Let’s understand the action plan which can help us provide our customers a good customer service on social media platforms.
How to provide effective customer service with the help of social media?
The following steps are effective in building a good brand-customer relationship online:
- Be active on all the social media platforms especially Facebook and Twitter. It will help you to resolve the queries in short time.
- Use chatbots to provide users a human-human conversation experience. Your customers shouldn’t feel like they’re conversing with machines who are further delaying their queries.
- Do something special for your customer when he/she reaches you out publically ( when they have a complaint or want to give some feedback on the service of your brand)
BUILD SOCIAL SIGNALS TO BOOST YOUR SEO RANKINGS
Do you know social signals is one of 200 top ranking factors of Google? So what are social signals?
Social signals refer to a webpage’s collective shares, likes and overall social media visibility as perceived by search engines. These activities contribute to a page’s organic search ranking and are seen as another form of citation, similar to backlinks.
Some relevant social signals are:
- Number of tweets and retweets and the popularity (followers) of the people tweeting
- Facebook shares
- Pinterest shares
SEO is all about providing users the best results which solves their query and is relevant to what they search. And social signals is a great way to measure how relevant and is it able to solve user intent.
With the help of social media marketing, you can increase the authority of your website pages and increase SEO traffic.
How to increase social signals to boost your rankings?
Remember quality content is the behind understanding user intent as well as make the content relevant. Following tested social media strategies can be used to increase your social signals:
- Post daily: Keep your brand at the top of social media news feeds.
- Use images: Images greatly increase interaction rates for all social media types.
- Listen: Hear what people are saying about your brand and respond to critique in a constructive and positive way.
- Monitor: There are several free social media marketing apps which track shares, re-tweets, likes, and keywords associated with your brand.
- Contests: Contests and giveaways are a great way to increase interest in your brand.
- Partnerships: Share links and produce original content with other popular brands.
- Cover all the social media bases: Produce content for all of the top social media sites.
SOCIAL MEDIA TRENDS IN 2020
In this part of the guide, we will discuss the social media trends which are going to matter in 2020 and beyond. So let’s dive in:
Social Media has changed a lot in the past 10 years and continues to evolve at a drastic pace today. Reason being, the user behavior is changing as they’re understanding that their attention is being sold online, the advertising nature is transforming rapidly and with lightning-fast technology, everyone is going impatient.
So how to build a social media strategy which can help us grow and cope up with its exponentially evolving industry? Well, the answer is you need to follow the social media trends which users are adapting rapidly.
According to Search Engine Journal, below are tested and tried social media marketing trends every marketer needs to know:
- Empathy is the key
- Facebook loves video
- Influencer marketing is important
- Chatbots are cool
- Say hello to Linkedin
- Community is the secret
Let’s discuss them one by one.
EMPATHY IS THE KEY
In 2020, understanding your audience emotions should be a top priority of your social media marketing strategy. Irrespective of being a virtual world the conversation happening between brands and customers is more human than ever.
So as a brand it is important for you to:
- Love and care about your customers
- Resolve their queries quickly and reach them as soon as possible when they need you
- Build trust and curate quality content especially for them
- Instead of spammy advertising, find their problems and create a solution which also syndicates with your services and products
Empathy is a two-way game and when you show your customers that you really care about them they will return the same love with loyalty.
FACEBOOK LOVES VIDEO
Videos are trending all over social media and aren’t limited to just Youtube. Facebook especially loves videos and boasts 8 billion views on a daily basis. There is another section called “Facebook Watch”especially to watch and enjoy videos.
Below is how Facebook videos typically perform:
As a brand, you should focus on uploading videos on Facebook as it will reward you with good audience growth rate as well as effective daily reach. You can leverage videos on Facebook with the help of:
- Live videos: Start coming live on Facebook with the help of live videos, it just makes brand-customer relation more reliable and human
- Short stories: It keeps your audience updated about the latest news from your brand
- Authentic videos; Producing content in the form of video gets better engagement and of course more shares!
INFLUENCER MARKETING IS IMPORTANT
Influencer marketing will be an essential component of 2020 social media marketing trends, especially when trying to market your product in a specific region. Below are some strong reasons behind the same:
- Influencers know their niche and region well and that’s why their campaigns go successful.
- People love influencers and follow what they say as for many they are their role models.
- It is always better to go for influencer marketing in the beginning when your brand is completely aloof about a region, people interests and what people love to watch. With influencer marketing, it is easier to connect with this type of audience and let them know what your brand stands for.
CHATBOTS ARE COOL
According to Business Insider, the chatbot industry is estimated to be 1.23 billion dollars by 2025. And by 2020 will be talking more to chatbots than our spouses. These stats clearly mention that people love to communicate with chatbots as compared to customer service humans.
Also, when we put a chatbot between a customer and our product the conversation is short, clear and satisfying. So as a good digital marketer it is extremely important to understand the potential of chatbots and should know how to leverage it for brands.
Some of the brands who are leveraging the chatbots in the best way are:
Using chatbots is purpose-specific and depends on what the brands want its customers to know about. Be it selling your product online or offering digital services with the help of artificial intelligence. It is more about the story your brand wants to tell its customers.
SAY HELLO TO LINKEDIN
LinkedIn is evolving and making a huge push toward becoming an informative business content sharing and connection nurturing network. They are creating alluring features for younger demographics to begin using the network as they begin entering the workforce or heading into higher education.
Also, LinkedIn is often not fully leveraged by marketers. But if you look at what LinkedIn has done over the last year with video, the rise of LinkedIn influencers and connecting their products to Bing – this is the platform to watch and get serious in 2020.
COMMUNITY IS THE SECRET
Building a community is crucial as the efforts behind building it always pays back. Instead of leveraging social media as a medium to solely advertise your products and foster brand awareness, a brand should focus on building effective communication with its community.
It is time to make the social network, social again that’s why Mark Zuckerberg has been striving hard to shift the algorithms so that the purpose of Facebook remains intact which is extremely important for sustaining the business in the long term.
SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING STRATEGY
The right foundation of strong social media marketing is laid by strategy. Without strategy social media is simply bombarding audience with irrelevant content which may or may not provide adequate ROI’s.
So let’s discuss how to create a perfect social media marketing strategy:
- Set attainable goals
- Study your audience
- Do a social media audit
- Research your competitor
- Create quality content
- Assess your performance and improve
SET ATTAINABLE GOALS
Never start social media marketing with unrealistic expectations. Expectations like:
- Growing to 1 million instagram and facebook followers
- Lead the industry in just 2 months
These expectations only stunt growth instead of fostering it. Instead, understand what you need from your social media marketing? Why you’re adopting social media marketing in the first place? When the why is clear that you’re building social media profile in order to get more customers for your business or you want to build a community, you can start setting small goals to make things fall in the right place.
STUDY YOUR AUDIENCE
Assumptions can go really wrong in marketing world, so it is always best to go with numbers. That’s why it is best to study your audience and research on them properly in order to frame a right social media marketing strategy.
By diging deep into insights and data analytics, you can understand what your audience needs and what it prefers in the first place. A proper research will help you in creating the right content for the right type of audience.
DO A SOCIAL MEDIA AUDIT
There are many tools which can help you audit your social media profiles effectively. Some of the most used and recommended tools by digital marketers are:
- Union Metrics
RESEARCH YOUR COMPEITITOR
A competitive analysis allows you to understand who the competition is and what they’re doing well (and not so well). You’ll get a good sense of what’s expected in your industry, which will help you set social media targets of your own.
This analysis will also help you spot opportunities. For example, maybe one of your competitors is dominant on Facebook, but has put little effort into Twitter or Instagram. You might want to focus on the networks where your audience is underserved, rather than trying to win fans away from a dominant player.
CREATE QUALITY CONTENT
No matter how algorithms change over time, there is no denying the fact that content is always the king. By posting relevant and high-quality content you’ll entertain and add value to your audience.
Following steps can be useful before you’re in the process of creating great content.
Research and find out:
- Figure out what your audience needs at the moment
- What is trending in the social media world?
- Where is your audience from and what is its demographic interests?
- What kind of content your audience will share the most?
By looking above and keeping all the points in mind you’ll be able to create the best quality content.
ASSESS YOUR PERFORMANCE AND IMPROVE
The best way to learn marketing is to do it, fail, learn and doing it again. Remember social media marketing is marathon, not a sprint race, so make sure you’re playing a long term game. So always prepare your assessement report and analyze:
- Growth rate
- Audience interests and demographics
- What are the gaps which can be filled with the help of content marketing?
- Where your brand did exceptionally well
Social media marketing is a powerful tool to raise your voice in this noisy world. And no matter how trends follow up, it is going to stay for the long term as for new social media marketing platforms are turning up day by day.
By adopting to new user behaviours it will always be easier for marketers to come up with new social media marketing strategies and figure out what can be done to leverage this power and scale in the market.
Thanks for reading!