Storytelling: The Best Way to Build a Lasting Social Media Strategy
March 17, 2023 |
November 23, 2021
The most effective way to reach an audience and convince them to use, or keep using, whatever service or item you’re selling, is by being exactly where they are when they need your goods! This hasn’t always been possible, meaning companies have had to rely on sales teams, manage their reputation as best they could from afar, and most importantly, employ outbound marketing campaigns. You may wonder which social platforms you should target and use to reach your customers through marketing, and we have you covered with our insight below.
Most businesses have learned by now that staying relevant in the digital age means being present on social media. But, before leaping into perhaps the most charted territory there has been or will ever be, there are a few key things to consider. First, ask yourself if social media even makes sense for your business and your industry. Although you may be hard-pressed to find an industry that doesn’t benefit in some way from social media exposure, this is still a great question to consider and one that helps brands think through what their business hopes to achieve by joining the social party.
If you answered yes to the question above, it’s time to consider which social platforms to focus on. Choosing the right platform to establish your presence on is key and can help brands reach clients they were not in front of before using this tool.
Unfortunately, as beneficial as the right platform can be, establishing a presence on a platform that doesn’t fit your brand can cause irreparable damage to your brand’s digital, and overall, reputation. Think of social media platforms like an investment. When you make a smart investment, you get your money back and then some. When you make shady investments, you often feel the negative effects long after the money’s gone.
Finally, how can a business use social media and social media marketing to achieve business goals? As with any business tool that requires an investment of time, money, or extra effort in general, you want to use said tool to its full potential. One way to do this is by finding ways to incorporate social media into your business strategy. For example, create content that addresses the barriers potential clients may experience to simplify the conversion process. Mitigate negative feedback by using social media to respond directly to clients with questions and concerns, promptly, to avoid spreading a negative word about your com[any. Finally, try incorporating engaging marketing tactics to establish a trustworthy presence and industry expertise.
Most companies have goals in mind that are structured in yearly, quarterly, monthly, and even weekly increments. Social media is a great tool to achieve some common business goals like increasing awareness, increasing reach, driving more traffic to the website/store, and converting more leads into happy clients.
If you have a decent understanding of your target audience demographics, or even if you don’t but would like to, social media is a great place to gather and harness this exact information or data.
As seen in the graphic above, there are 4.2 billion social media users turning these platforms into giant opportunities. Meet your client base right where they statistically spend most of their social time, for an advantage in reaching them, understanding their needs, and figuring out what kind of content they respond best to.
If what your business offers is best received visually, social media is a great place to do just this. Social platforms allow brands to paint beautiful pictures, tell stories, and better explain a product or service through the use of engaging graphics, fun videos, and tutorials they’ll revisit over and over again. Social media also grants brands the benefit —or maybe not in some cases— of instant audience feedback!
For the purposes of this article, we’ll cover three social media platforms that businesses are seeing awesome results with — Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. These platforms are user-friendly, intuitive, and have ample resources on best practices.
Facebook allows users to create a public Facebook Business Page that hosts business information like services offered, contact information, location, and a business website link.
Facebook Business pages allow businesses to communicate with their audience members, share important business announcements, promote sales and special offers, and can often help brands feel more human. The business pages can also be connected to Facebook Shops and Facebook Ad Accounts.
Facebook also offers Audience Insights, which illuminate demographic information relating to a specific audience, which type of content does the best among that audience, frequency of activity, and purchase activity, if applicable.
Instagram allows users to create an Instagram Business Account, which can also be linked to a Facebook page, making cross-posting (posting simultaneously across platforms) possible (use appropriately). Important to note, having a Facebook to link your Instagram to is actually a requirement of the Instagram Business Account, but this is something that can make for a more seamless social presence overall.
Instagram Business Accounts are public and offer insights, like Facebook, to give businesses a better idea of how the people who are interacting with their social profiles are behaving, their preferences, and what they respond well to.
Businesses are also able to promote certain posts and create ads via Instagram Business Accounts with direct links in their posts that users can immediately purchase from, known as Instagram Shoppable Posts.
LinkedIn is a great resource for businesses to use to connect with each other. Its professional nature allows for brands to establish industry expertise by sharing accomplishments, graciously boasting exciting awards, and releasing shoutouts to other industry professionals they work with on the regular and can’t live without.
LinkedIn allows users to create a LinkedIn Business Page that can be connected to and linked from a business owner’s personal page. Again, LinkedIn is a great platform to share certifications, degrees, volunteer history, or for a business, tell the story of why and how you do what you do, which all speaks to your business’s credibility.
LinkedIn allows other connections (e.g., friends) on LinkedIn to “endorse” users for certain areas of expertise, and connect with people in a more professional, and potentially more legitimate, capacity.
As mentioned above, Facebook and Instagram offer insight capabilities to track how well your brand performs digitally.
While social media for small brands is different from social media for larger companies, a few things remain the same —managing social media accounts requires a decent time commitment and is often time-sensitive. Advertising and marketing on social media will also cost time, money, and resources.
Some brands choose to handle their social platforms themselves, while others decide to hire an expert in the field, such as a social media manager. Social media managers understand the social vocabulary and can decipher data collected from each social platform to determine where changes need to be made, which content is working well, and how to best move forward.
Digital Marketing agencies, like PHOS Creative for example, take management a step further by managing not only assisting with social media profiles but also creating an entire online presence that tells a seamless story of a brand. This story is compiled of a professional website, cohesive brand image and marketing materials, intriguing written and graphic content, and strategic focus anywhere online a brand may be mentioned.
In short, social media marketing helps businesses establish an online presence, establish industry expertise, and connect with their target audience.
An online presence is extremely important because online is typically the first place people look to learn more about a business. Creating a solid social media profile for your business confirms to potential clients that you are, in fact, a legitimate company. It also shows that you hopefully have positive reviews that speak to the quality of work or services you provide and answer the question of how much experience your company is bringing to the table.
Prove that your business knows what it is doing. Positive reviews, photos and videos of past and present work, public interactions with clients, and the answering of common questions are all great ways to also establish industry expertise.
Finally, connecting with the right audience when, where, and how they prefer lets audience members know they are seen, heard, and valued, and creates a positive customer experience to help strengthen brand loyalty over time.
You are the expert on your business. Strategically using social media to achieve business goals is just one more way to grow your business, learn about your audience, and consistently deliver excellence.
For expert insight on how to use social media marketing to reach your business’s goals, reach out to the team at PHOS. We love helping companies like yours leverage the power of social media to improve customer engagement and help create longtime fans for years to come.