You may be asking yourself if your business can afford to spend the time and resources on developing and maintaining a social media presence. The better question may be: can you afford not to? Social media isn’t just a fad that will disappear in time. It presents a new way of communicating with customers and influencers whose opinions are highly-valuable, something each business can use to their advantage. Discrediting social media cuts off a pathway of communication between you and consumers.
So how do you get started? You begin by finding your target audience. Approximately 74% of the population of the U.S. is using at least one social media platform with the most users being women aged 18-29. Each platform has a slightly different demographic of users that dominate it.
Pinterest remains popular among later Millennials and Generation Xers, with the majority spanning 25-44 years old. This market belongs to the female population, and has a significant number of 18-24 year olds with accounts as well.
Instagram and Snapchat are where you will find the youngest users. Though they may also be on other networks, U.S. teens rank Instagram as the most important social network to check.
Once you find your target market’s platform of choice, you must have a well-optimized profile and engage with your fans and customers. If your industry finds most customers on Pinterest instead of Twitter, focus your energies on promoting pins and creating group boards instead of worrying about hashtags.
Don’t be afraid to snoop on your competitors, either. What are they doing that is successful, and what could you do to set yourself apart? Don’t be afraid to blaze a trail and try something new. That’s the beauty of social media; you can change your strategy at the drop of a hat.
The best guideline to follow when developing your social media strategy is to provide valuable, fresh content to your followers. No one with a social media account wants to see you link to your service pages or e-newsletter sign-up form over and over again. If you provide great articles and commentary that will resonate with your audience, it will be shared over and over again. Shareable content will raise brand awareness and lead potential customers to your business’s website. With a strong on-page call to action, this will generate leads – a measurable result of your social media strategy.
Social media is no longer an afterthought, but a new way to communicate with your current and potential customers. Whether you are reaching out to industry professionals and influencers in LinkedIn or responding to a single customer comment on Facebook, social media gives you the chance to provide the one-on-one customer service of brick and mortar stores that had previously been missing from the digital landscape.
King Media in East Lansing, Michigan is a marketing and advertising firm that specializes in traditional and digital strategy, with an emphasis on branding. For more industry news and best practices, sign up for our e-newsletter below or follow us on Facebook.