It’s now about halfway through Q1 2017, and perhaps your company’s New Year’s resolution is to improve your social media marketing efforts. Clearly, posting content at random without direction or discipline will not yield the results you desire. Implementing a disciplined social regimen with set goals in mind will greatly increase your chances of expanding your reach and influence over your targeted platforms.
To help you get started on growing your brand’s social influence today, consider these tips:
Define Your Goals
Before you send your next tweet, take a step back and brainstorm some goals that you would like to accomplish through your social media efforts. These could be numerical goals, such as growing your follower base, or they could be more qualitative goals that emphasize certain messaging that is important to your brand.
Collaborate with your colleagues on developing ideas and jot down a list. Once you have determined potential campaigns and themes you may want to pursue, pick the ones that you think best represent your brand, are the most easily achievable, and will yield the most desirable results. This is important, especially if your social accounts are operated by more than one person.
Once you have your goals in mind, you will be able to both realize what you want to accomplish and hold yourself and others accountable to working toward your social media growth efforts.
No matter which social platform you choose, make sure to include a healthy dose of images. Original photography and graphics are preferred in this case, as they will strengthen your brand identity amongst your audience members. Since many users often access their accounts through their smartphones, they are likely to “scroll” up and down their feeds as they search for new content to consume. Using visuals allows your posts to stand out from the endless stream of text and entices them to delve deeper.
Social media has “social” in its name for a reason. Returns on your social media marketing efforts are greater when you are making a conscious effort to interact with your audience, fellow community members, or other key players in your industry. If you are creating opportunities for others to share your content on social, that will exponentially amplify the amount of eyes that see your social content. If there is an opportunity to connect with others on social, take it!
Pay close attention to the times that you are posting on your social media accounts. Posting at the right times can lead to better returns on reach and engagement.
According to CoSchedule, these are the best time to post on the most popular social media platforms (keep in mind, these are approximate and may not be applicable in every situation):
- Instagram: 8-9 a.m., 2 a.m., 5 p.m.
- Twitter: 12 p.m., 3 p.m., 5-6 p.m.
- LinkedIn: 7-8 a.m., 12 p.m., 5-6 p.m.
- Facebook: 9 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m.
The most popular times to post tend to be before or around 9 a.m., around noon, and on or around 5 p.m. In the context of a standard forty-hour work week, this would line up with the start of the workday, a lunch break, and the end of the day. Post when your followers will have the most free time throughout the day. This will help better ensure that your content reaches your audience.
Make Call-to-Action Posts a Priority
What is the best way to engage with followers? Prompt them to engage with you in a specific, yet easy way. Create call-to-action posts that require a response from your followers. Some examples of call-to-action posts are: asking your audience to answer a particular question, participate in a survey, or share a post as part of a giveaway promotion. These kind of posts naturally invite followers to respond and engage with both your brand and with one another.
Incorporate Live Video
Recent trends show that live video is shaping up to be the new visual medium of the masses; it would not be out of the realm of possibility that live videos will be the medium through which the next generation of social media influencers will arise. The idea of watching a video and communicating its creator in real-time is attractive because of its instantaneous nature.
You’re going to want to make sure that your brand is including live video in its social strategy as soon as possible. If the idea of implementing this live video strategy is intimidating or confusing, consider these tips to get started. Here are some additional tips for starting your live stream from YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
No matter the measures you take to expand your brand’s social media reach, it all comes down to taking a proactive and disciplined approach. Make your social media marketing a priority, make an effort to follow a strategy and factor it into your daily business activities. Using this approach will help to increase the impact your brand has on its audience.