Are You Using Social Media Strategically?
Even though it’s not new, many small business owners still struggle to determine how or even if social media fits into their marketing budget. And if it does, which platforms? And how often do they need to post? There is not a right or wrong answer. There is, however, a few basics that every business should consider when it comes to social media.
Social media, at its most basic, is marketing. Which means the point of view that any business should consider is that of their customers. It’s not about whether you or your team uses social media. The question that needs to be investigated is “how does your target market use social media?”
When your business can answer that question your social media strategy becomes a lot easier to understand. This requires your business to have a defined definition of your target market.
This profile should include:
- Demographics (age, income, education, marital status, location, etc.)
- Psychographics (what they value, how they think, etc.)
- Are they new prospects or do they already buy from you?
The goal is to be where your target market is, so then you can start to determine: Which platform is the right social media channel? A simple Google search can find an up-to-date report on the demographics for each popular social media platform. Your business should schedule time to look at this at least once a year because platforms evolve and so does how your target market use each platform. The simple answer here is that the right platform is the one that your target market is on.
How often do you need to post? Again, this is determined by your target market. You should research how much time your target market tends to spend on the platform. You want to spend more time on the platform your target market is on. It increases your chances of being seen. If they rarely log in or spend just a few moments of time, it’s harder to get their attention. Your window of time is smaller, which means you might need more direct contact. For instance, if your target market is on LinkedIn, but rarely logs in, posting two times a day won’t be helpful. However, paying to send a direct message to them might make sense.
Next, like the above example, understanding how the platform works is key. For instance, on Facebook a user will see most posts from people they like or follow, some comments and likes made by those they follow, or sponsored posts. This means that unless you have a large following on Facebook, to get seen by new prospects you may have to pay to boost your posts or buy a targeted ad.
It’s worth noting, too, that each platform has a different strategy. For instance, your content on TikTok may get more free views when it’s on the “for you page” because their algorithm targets videos to users based off who they follow and interact with. Of course, you have to understand how to get your content on this page using hashtags, your own interactions and following trends. And even though TikTok is a relatively new platform, if it’s where your clients/prospects are it might be the place your company needs to be. Not to mention, it’s still finding its footing when it comes to ads/sponsored posts which means it’s easier to compete for your target market.
The point is simply to make sure that your business isn’t discounting social media or even certain platforms because of your habits. Instead, your business should be researching and making decisions based on your target market. There are plenty of low-cost options to get started in social media, but it starts with challenging your own point of view.
Keep an eye out for future articles from us on how to manage your social media strategy.