Social media marketing is a powerful strategy due to its unparalleled reach, targeting capabilities, and engagement potential. As a small business, one of your strengths lies in the authentic connections with your individual customers that larger corporate entities simply wouldn’t be able to maintain. And in social media marketing (SMM, FYI) authentic connection is the name of the game.
Whether it’s the organic content and word of mouth advertising happy customers freely provide, the great analytics available when creating and analyzing your campaign, or opportunities for influencer partnership and more, harnessing the power of social media brings handsome rewards.
- Increase traffic to your website
- Generate brand awareness
- Generate contacts for your marketing list
- Improve engagement and get valuable feedback from customers
#1: Choose goals based on industry
What type of business do you run? Just like an independent retail shop is going to have a very different customer base -and marketing strategy- than a large legal firm, different industries often have very distinct target audiences and social media goals. For instance, a modern digital agency might heavily rely on social media sites to engage tech-savvy social media users seeking real-time updates and interactive content. On the other hand, an export-import business with a focus on international trade might prioritize understanding the different platforms popular in various regions, particularly in emerging markets like China and India.
Let’s take a look at a few examples.
Focus on driving website traffic, increasing online sales, and enhancing customer retention through personalized offers and engaging content.
Fashion and Beauty
Utilize visually appealing content to showcase products, collaborate with influencers for endorsements, and run contests to boost engagement and brand awareness.
Emphasize thought leadership by sharing industry insights, building a strong community, and showcasing innovative products or services to establish brand authority.
Health and Fitness
Concentrate on building a community around wellness, sharing informative content, and leveraging user testimonials to establish credibility and trust.
Hospitality (e.g., restaurants, hotels)
Prioritize creating an enticing online presence, encouraging user-generated content (UGC) like reviews and images, and promoting special offers to attract and retain customers.
#2: Know Your Audience
Knowing a business’s customers is essential to understanding the business itself. It’s like uncovering its core essence. A savvy marketer must be able to clearly define what the business does, its purpose, and who its target customers are. If they can’t pinpoint who they are and who their customers are, how accurate can their marketing strategies possibly be?
Data and Analytics
Data and analytics are key to unlocking valuable insights that can transform your business. By using tools like social media stats, website tracking, customer surveys, and market research, you’ll understand your audience better—what they like, how they act, and what they need.
Armed with this knowledge, you can make smart, data-driven choices to boost your marketing and improve customer experiences.
For a quick and easy access to top-quality data, check out our web design article “Data and Analytics in the Design Process” where we discuss some of CodeDesign’s most successful tips and tricks for integrating data collection and analytics right into the website design process.
#3: Tone Matters
Generally speaking, a business that targets a broader section of the general public -with diverse age ranges, interests and cultural backgrounds- will have better results using a casual, informal tone than a company that serves a niche market with specialized products or services.
In the right industry, the informal approach can establish a sense of approachability and relatability, resonating with a wider audience.
Fast Food Chain
A popular fast-food chain targeting a broad demographic, including teenagers, young adults and families, adopts a casual tone on its social media posts. They use fun, lighthearted language, emojis, and trendy memes to engage with their audience playfully. This approach makes their content shareable and helps build a sense of community around their brand.
Beauty and Wellness Brand
A beauty and wellness brand with products for different skin types and preferences adopts a casual tone on social media. They encourage followers to share their skincare routines, use colloquial language in product descriptions, incorporate popular hashtags related to beauty trends, and host interactive Q&A sessions with skincare experts to build trust and engagement.
A travel agency catering to various travelers, ranging from backpackers to luxury seekers, utilizes an informal tone on social media platforms. They share captivating travel stories, user-generated content, and witty captions, creating an emotional connection with their followers and often create virtual communities for fellow travelers.
Using a casual or informal tone might not be well-received in other scenarios, especially for businesses targeting niche markets where a more professional and specialized communication style is expected.
Financial Advisory Firm
A financial advisory firm that caters to high-net-worth individuals and offers complex investment strategies may face backlash if they adopt a casual tone on social networking platforms. Their audience expects a serious and professional demeanor, as they are dealing with sensitive financial matters. Casual language might undermine their credibility and expertise.
B2B Software Solutions
Companies providing intricate B2B software solutions such as website design and development require clear and precise communication. A casual tone might confuse potential clients and prevent them from understanding the technical aspects of the product, hindering their decision-making process.
Legal Services Provider
For a law firm providing specialized legal services, maintaining a formal and professional tone is crucial. Social media content should reflect their expertise and knowledge of the law. Being overly casual may convey an unprofessional image, leading potential customers to doubt their capabilities.
#4: Tailor your strategy for each platform
According to Mixbloom, in 2022 Youtube and Instagram were the top social media platforms for millennials and Gen Z, Facebook and Youtube attracted a higher earning user base, and LinkedIn was (and is) the top spot for niche, industry specific advertisements. Is this info extremely general? You betcha! But now that you know who your audience is, let’s figure out where to find them. Chances are good you’ll find a few sites that really stand out.
Focus on short-form, engaging content that resonates with the platform’s predominantly young and creative audience. Embrace trends, challenges, and viral sounds to stay relevant, and leverage eye-catching visuals to captivate viewers. Emphasize authenticity and user-generated content to foster a sense of community-oh, and make sure you’re optimizing your content for mobile devices!
Facebook is a great place to set up a business page, post video content (research shows that Facebook users currently watch a total of 100 million hours of video content per day) and centralize your contact information. Use this as a hub to direct customers to your website and other social media presences, highlight important information and hours of operation, and so much more.
Instagram is, as you might guess, extremely visually focused. You won’t be able to make text based posts or insert links within them, but with an eyepopping number of monthly active users, it’s one of the best places to run an image heavy campaign.
A huge part of what makes Twitter so effective is the focus on short messages that get the point across. Twitter has become the go-to app for customers wanting human interaction with a business, and is often the first stop for customer service even before a contact form.
Another visually oriented platform, Pinterest allows users to save and display content by pinning it to digital bulletin boards. 77% of users find new products while browsing, and with the right strategy Pinterest can be a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal.
You can create a campaign that uses each platform for different elements of your overall message, or focus on the individual platforms that best match your style. Just remember that the more sites you market on, the more there is to keep track of and maintain. Consider using a social media calendar to stay on top of everything.
There are plenty of other platforms we didn’t cover here, of course. However seemingly well or poorly suited to marketing a given social network might seem, there’s almost definitely a community waiting to be tapped into. Don’t discount places like Reddit, Snapchat or Whatsapp.
Marketing vs Organic Social Media Growth
There’s no doubt that marketing is a hugely important part of any successful business, but it can easily be a full time job. Moreover, staying updated with accurate information is crucial in today’s digital age, as disinformation spreads rapidly through instant messaging and other channels.
The fact is, the digital landscape is constantly changing and keeping up with current trends on top of running your business can be overwhelming. We can give you all the tips in the world (and we plan to!) but at the end of the day, how much is your free time worth?
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do a social media campaign?
Running a social media campaign is a smart move for businesses due to its cost-to-benefit advantages. While there might be some initial investment in content creation, ads, or hiring a social media manager, the potential return on investment is impressive.
A well-executed campaign can boost brand visibility, drive more traffic to your website, and result in increased conversions, making it a bang-for-your-buck marketing strategy. Plus, kickstarting your online following through the campaign can open doors to ongoing organic benefits.
As your audience grows, word-of-mouth referrals, user-generated content, and customer loyalty can take over, leading to continued engagement without constant paid promotions. So, beyond just the initial push, social media campaigns offer a ripple effect of long-term rewards for your brand.
What are the best social media platforms for my business?
Choosing the best social media platforms for your business depends on who you’re trying to reach and what you want to achieve. Let’s group these social media sites into three loose categories to make it easier:
- If you’re all about visuals, like fashion, beauty, or lifestyle stuff, Instagram and Pinterest are your go-to places because they’re all about cool images and inspiration.
- If you’re a B2B company or into professional services and want to network and get industry insights, LinkedIn is your spot.
- Now, for businesses aiming at younger crowds and looking to share viral stuff, TikTok and Snapchat are where it’s at.
And hey, wherever you’re already getting engagement, stick around there too. It shows you’ve got an active and interested viewership. By knowing your audience and understanding each platform’s strengths, you can tailor your social media game and get the most out of it.
Can I find a social media manager on Fiverr?
Absolutely! You can find a social media manager on Fiverr, and it’s true that the platform offers a wide range of options, including inexpensive and even free services. However, there are some risks involved when going for the cheapest options.
While you might save some money upfront, the quality might not meet your expectations. Inexperienced or low-cost social media managers may lack the expertise needed to effectively manage your brand’s online presence and engage with your target audience in a meaningful way.
Apart from potential quality concerns, there are a few other factors to consider. Communication and understanding your specific business goals could be challenging when dealing with someone you’ve never met face-to-face. Additionally, timelines and deliverables might not be as reliable as they would be with a dedicated in-house or professional agency team.
On the bright side, Fiverr can be advantageous for certain situations. If you’re just starting and have a limited budget, or you’re experimenting with different strategies, it can be a cost-effective way to dip your toes into social media marketing. Some sellers on Fiverr may be genuinely talented and provide good value for money.