Tired of throwing money at your online marketing without getting any decent real results?
Want to find out why branding is essential to your next social media marketing campaign and generate the results you’ve dreamt of?
If so, we have good news. In this article, Lexie Lu highlights why branding is vital on social media, along with 12 top tips for running social media marketing campaigns.
- Why Does Branding Matter on Social Media?
- Tips for Social Media Marketing Campaigns
- Tip # 1: Know Your Audience
- Tip # 2: Use Video
- Tip # 3: Tie Into Real Life Events
- Tip # 4: Reach Younger Consumers
- Tip # 5: Show Off Your Personality
- Tip # 6: Add Videos to Your Social Media Pages
- Tip # 7: Utilize a Social Media Calendar
- Tip # 8: Enhance Your Reputation
- Tip # 9: Plan out Images
- Tip # 10: Watch Your Competition
- Tip # 11: Establish Yourself as the Authority
- Tip # 12: Collect Leads
- Know Your Brand Identity
Social media marketing is a must in the current environment. However, you can throw a lot of money on online marketing without getting any real results. You need to think through your social media marketing campaigns carefully for them to work the best.
In one report, researchers found there are now more than four billion users on social media. No matter who your target audience is, social media reaches that demographic. Not only are your customers found on some social media platform somewhere, but social media targets the audience in a highly specific way based on the behaviors and personal data of the user.
Why Does Branding Matter on Social Media?
There are over three million businesses active on Facebook, and the number grows each year. Users become so accustomed to seeing ads and sponsored posts that they tend to skim over most of the marketing presented to them. The only way of standing out in a noisy environment is differentiating your brand from others in your industry.
Think about the first impression your brand has on consumers and how you present your mission. Keep in mind the user may not pay attention the first or even the second time they see an ad from your company. However, if your message is consistent each time the consumer sees something from you, your branding sticks, and eventually the person may convert into a customer.
Tips for Social Media Marketing Campaigns
As with most types of marketing, branding is essential to social media campaigns. Take a look at the following 12 tips to help you ensure your social media marketing is as successful as possible:
Tip # 1: Know Your Audience
You’ve likely heard the advice before about knowing your target audience, but it’s such an essential aspect of marketing that it bears repeating. Dig into your internal analytics and figure out who your customers are. Once you know your customer, what drives them and where they hang out, your social media marketing naturally follows that audience.
For example, if you discover most of your customers are millennials, they trend toward Instagram more than Facebook, so you’d focus your efforts on that social media platform.
Tip # 2: Use Video
Video grabs the attention of users and offers easily digestible content. The number of product reviews on YouTube grew about 50 percent annually. Videos are an effective way to get the word out, so marketers use them more now than in the past.
Girl Scouts uses rich images and videos on their Instagram page, which grabs the attention of Generation Z and creates interest in the organization. Note the video’s focus on something the Girl Scouts are known for — Thin Mint cookies. The creative use of the disappearing cookie grabs the user’s attention.
Tip # 3: Tie Into Real Life Events
No matter where you serve your customers, they crave interaction with your brand. If you want loyal customers, think about the best ways to engage them. For example, if you have a presence at an event with a trade show booth, how can you integrate that event into social media?
One example includes using a hashtag users search for that pulls up images, videos and news about the event. Display a large sign and include the hashtag on your signage, so people use the photo op and upload the image to social media along with the hashtag.
Tip # 4: Reach Younger Consumers
If you want to reach Gen Zers and even millennials, promote your business on Snapchat. These generations like the immediacy of the platform, so you can use it to create limited-time offers for those who follow your brand. Snapchat has the feel of being in an exclusive club, so the platform builds brand loyalty among your followers.
World Wildlife Fund uses Snapchat to get the word out about endangered species. For example, they used an image of a gorilla and posted “Don’t let this be my last selfie.” The tagline and unique image grab the attention of the target audience on the social media platform.
Tip # 5: Show Off Your Personality
Social media offers a chance for you to show off your brand’s personality a bit. While you might be all business by necessity on your website, social media allows engagement with consumers, which lets you dig deeper into what makes your company tick.
Share the issues you care about with your followers, but be careful not to alienate anyone. It’s best to stay away from politics and other controversial topics people feel strongly about unless it directly relates to your industry.
Tip # 6: Add Videos to Your Social Media Pages
Adding a video to your landing page helps increase conversions and cater to consumers’ decreasing attention spans. Adding video to your social media pages provides an engaging piece of content from the moment a user lands on your profile. Easily add new videos and rotate the featured ones to keep your page fresh and enticing to both regular visitors and first-time users.
When people watch marketing videos on Facebook, about 64 percent of them buy the product or service. Videos on social media are powerful!
Burger King utilizes videos on Facebook to remain current and tie into seasonal marketing. On the Fourth of July, Burger King tapped into the patriotic spirit of the holiday by highlighting a video of the ABK Sparkler (American Brewhouse King). In the description, they explain what the sandwich is, although the images speak for themselves.
Tip # 7: Utilize a Social Media Calendar
Take the time to plan out the next six months for your social media pages. Look ahead to upcoming events, holidays, product releases and company news. Scheduling content in advance allows you to create timely social media posts. You can always move things around or delete or add posts, but that way, you won’t come up on a holiday and not have any content for your followers.
Tip # 8: Enhance Your Reputation
Researchers found that about 88 percent of survey participants said they were likely to avoid a brand with a bad reputation. Your online reputation matters, and you can make it or break it on social media. Before engaging on any social media network, ensure you have the customer service processes in place to quickly and effectively deal with issues that arise.
If a consumer posts a complaint about your brand, everyone on the social media team should know how to respond. It looks good on your brand and potentially retains that person as a customer, turning a negative into a positive.
Spotify features a strong presence on Twitter, reaching out to customers and keeping them informed of any issues and what’s going on to resolve those problems. They also respond promptly to any complaints, coming up with a resolution and showing consumers they care about their customers and keeping their business.
Tip # 9: Plan out Images
Sites like Instagram that are image-rich allow you to get creative with social media branding. For example, Reynolds Kitchens came up with a concept called the neverending table. One image ties into the next image, and when viewed on any type of device, the images look like one long table with a variety of foods displayed. It’s quite creative but requires a lot of planning.
Tip # 10: Watch Your Competition
You want your brand to stand out as unique. One way to ensure consumers see you through a different lens is by keeping an eye on the competition. Study the competition — not to copy what they do but to do something different from them. Take a look at their posts and find holes in their marketing. The holes they haven’t covered provide ideas for content that’s unique and stands out.
For example, if the competition posts a lot of videos, focus more on images and infographics. If the competition posts spammy comments, start a conversation and stay away from the self-promotion — it’s a good idea not to promote your brand continually anyway, as this is a big turnoff to consumers.
Tip # 11: Establish Yourself as the Authority
Consumers should see your brand as the go-to standard in your industry. Establish yourself as the authority in your field with helpful content and by answering questions on social media. Take the time to engage with others rather than just expecting them to follow you and buy your products.
If there is a forum related to your industry, join the discussion and answer people’s questions without promoting yourself. Over time, your name becomes synonymous with answers in the field, and you’ll naturally have more authority — which leads to more traffic to your social media pages and website.
Your goal is for your name to be the first one that comes to mind when someone has a question about whatever product or service you offer.
Tip # 12: Collect Leads
Tens of thousands of followers on social media aren’t much use to you as a brand if you have no way to contact them outside of the platform they follow you on. Instead, invite them to join your newsletter mailing list or try out free offers. While you don’t want to promote to them non-stop, you do want to promote to them.
If users sign up for your list, then you control when and how you contact them.
Know Your Brand Identity
Before you create a presence on social media, make sure you fully understand your identity as a brand. Once you know what your underlying company philosophy is, everything you do on your website, social media or in person ties into your image and creates the impression users have of your business.
This article was contributed by Lexie Lu.