Social media is no longer used for pastime activities, at least not by companies that are conscious about branding. They know they can harness the power of social media and reach out to a massive number of consumers. Quantity matters! Access to more number of potential consumers means better prospect for sales. The marketing department of every company these days, be it online or offline, are aware of this and doing their best to build a presence on social media.
It’s 2014 now and we need new techniques for this year. The erstwhile techniques have already been tried and tested. As their effectiveness has shrunk, we need new and more effective ones this time. In this article, we’ll discuss some of those techniques.
Choosing the apt platform
Selecting the right platform is of paramount importance for the success of a social media campaign. Not all networks are suitable for all types of websites. LinkedIn for example is a cross between a conventional job portal and a social network where people could communicate with each other. It is an ideal platform to promote a staffing agency but not at all suitable to market a video hosting site. The latter can be best advertised on YouTube. The right platform therefore must be identified before the social media marketer makes an advance.
Social media marketing these days calls for personal branding. On social networks everything is visual, everything is audible and everything is communicable. You have a good chance of getting lost in the overwhelming crowd. To stand tall you need to personalize your branding. Building personal branding is not easy. You need to post in a timely manner, use images and videos and above all build a relationship with audiences. The audience should identify you not as a company but as a person. They should interact with you the same way they interact with others. Unless you take user engagement to this level, your brand building won’t be a success.
Companies have become so engrossed in online marketing activities that they literally forgot the importance of offline marketing. An effective marketing campaign is actually a combo of online and offline marketing strategies. The main reason marketers have turned their faces away from offline promotion is cost. Offline marketing is a costly affair. You may have to put ads on newspapers and buy slots on radio and television which come with heavy expenses.
Social media however allows you to go offline and at the same time take up the reins of expenses. You can host an event at a particular place, on a particular day and inform users on social media about the event. Sites like Facebook let you promote your page to a fixed number of users for a certain amount of money. A number of informed users attending the event means you’d get the chance to approach them about your product/service directly.
Trolling is a concern for online marketers. Trolls love to be on social networks and intentionally comment on every status updates and tweets. Of two types of trolls, one is pissed customers who know the reputation of the company cannot be spoiled otherwise and the other is paid agents of your rival companies.
You have to handle trolls carefully. Inept handling could put your company’s reputation at stake. First formulate a strategy to identify trolls. Keep close watch on the profiles that are commenting on every single post and whose comments are not in your favor. Answer decently to the questions asked by them. If they show anger, lessen them. But don’t argue with them or send them private messages. If they exasperate, remove them from the page.
Mobile app marketing
Handheld devices are heavily used for app download. You can take advantage of that. You can develop apps by hiring professional developers and advertise your company on the download page. You can also put ads on existing apps. Many apps are on social media, which is an added advantage for you. A survey done by Pew Research shows 58% Americans own Smartphone and the speed of mobile web adaptation is 8 times faster than the speed of desktop web adaptation during the late 90s and early 2000s.
The success of a social media marketing campaign depends on the techniques being used. So only apply a strategy when you are fully sure it will fetch you a handsome ROI. If you realize a technique has become outdated, replace it with a new one. Remember social media marketing constantly requires new ideas and their implementation. So you should creativity is needed.
What is your opinion on social media marketing in 2014? Tell us in the comment section.