If your client or brand wants to be successful in social media, forget everything you know about traditional media. Social media marketing will require you to leave your comfort zone and become more transparent and malleable with your content.
When you approach social media as a relationship builder and focus on creating connections with brand advocates, a little hard work and a deep dive into audience data will result in a social media campaign that sells itself.
Know where your audience hangs out
This may come as a surprise–but not everyone is on Facebook. However, just because someone is not on Facebook does not mean they don’t use Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn, or Twitter. As social media gets older (if Myspace was still around in its original form it would be taking AP calculus right now) and more social networking platforms are born, the usership of these platforms is becoming more segmented.
The age demographic for Facebook is skewing older every year, while new generations of consumers are finding their happy places on video and messenger apps like Snapchat–a company that never intended to be a social network (Pardes, 2018)– and Marco Polo.
Luckily, there is an endless amount of data out there that will help you pinpoint exactly where your target audience is hanging out. It is not a good strategy to be on every social media platform out there. Find the two or three platforms your demographics frequent and put all your content creation effort and marketing dollars into those platforms.
As with all relationships, it’s not all about you
Social media is a relationship builder. It is where you will find brand advocates: Individuals who will talk about your product with their family and friends, write reviews about your product, post pictures of your product, etc. When you are trying to be successful in social media, the most important promoter you can hire is your own customer.
Remember the Pareto Principle: 20% of your output will yield 80% of your results. That means media platforms should be up to 20% promotional; the remaining 80% should be related to your customers. So, when you are creating content for social media, stop talking about yourself. Talk about them, the people you are trying to reach (Forbes, 2018).
Social media – whether you’re posting or advertising on Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, or Snapchat—is where people go to read about the things they love and speak with the people they care about. You want your product to be one of the things they love, you want your brand to be the someone they care about. They don’t have time or the patience to hear about your brand’s long history. They want to hear about what you can do for them, right this instant, to make their lives better.
Show your human side
Social media is about transparency. When it does come time to talk about yourself, get personal. Tell your behind-the-scenes brand story. Showcase a real day in the office. Get on Instagram and film a quick story about a recent failure. Working on a new project? Film and post snippets from your meetings. Show people what it takes to put together the products and services they’re using, and they will love you for it.