Social media marketing 2024
Social media platforms and networks have revolutionized the way we communicate with friends; However, it has also changed how we interact with business organisations, and how business organizations interact with us as customers. This has led to a massive proliferation of social media marketing, which means the use of social media platforms and networks to promote products and services.
There are several ways social media platforms can be used for marketing, including promotion, sponsored content, influencer marketing, organic reach, customer engagement, and employee advocacy. This article covers all of these techniques and provides some helpful tips for starting your own social media marketing business.
What is social media marketing?
There are several definitions of social media marketing, but they all have one element in common: the use of social media tools to promote or market products and services.
Definitions of social media marketing
- Definition of Investopedia Encyclopedia
- Wikipedia encyclopedia definition
- Definition of Internet Marketing Company WordStream
Forms of social media marketing
Social media marketing may include the following forms:
- Market research , to learn more about your customers and competitors: This article on marketing research and marketing decision-making explains the steps and methods of market research, and social networking sites in this context represent an important source of information about customers and competitors, through several methods, such as listening, or scanning communication platforms social media in search of specific content, or from your customers and competitors; Some companies also use social networks to continuously interact with customers and learn about what they want from products.
- Sharing original content, including blogs and videos: Many companies use social media as a tool to support content they have published on other platforms, including copying ads. This process may include blogs and videos posted on their website, or content posted on social media . other social networks, such as Linkedin and Medium; In addition, most social media sites offer the feature of automated posts, which means that you can publish specific content over a period of weeks or months, ensuring that your content will be shown regularly.
- Sharing other people’s content such as customer reviews about your products: to diversify your posting style from original content, and to make companies’ social media pages more balanced; The latter share content created by other people, which may include, for example, positive customer reviews and comments from satisfied customers, but may also include content from competitors if such content is of interest and engagement to customers.
- Listening to and interacting with customers in response to their initial contact: Many companies resort to a very limited number of posts on social media, and instead of promoting publication, they use the site as a tool to respond to and talk to customers who contact the company, and this usually includes dealing with complaints , which allows the company to quickly respond to it and transfer it to a less public domain such as direct messages.
Companies also need to monitor their social media pages in order to avoid any issue, such as a post going viral for the wrong reasons, which requires a quick and careful treatment.
- Influencer Marketing: This method consists of using what are known as influencers on social media platforms for marketing. Influencers are independent users with a large following who accept to receive money or products in exchange for promoting a particular product or service. This approach usually works because people are more likely to believe someone’s testimony about the quality of a company’s product or service when they consider that person to be independent of that company.
- Employee Advocacy: Employee advocacy simply means allowing your employees to interact with customers on social media in both their personal capacity and as your employees. Business organizations often encourage their employees to share content related to their products on social media platforms, which can expand the natural reach. . Employee advocacy makes companies appear more human, but it can be a double-edged sword if employees use the wrong tone in their social media posts.
- Paid content and publicity: Social media companies have worked hard in recent years to reduce the natural reach of corporate posts on these platforms. It is now very difficult for business organizations to automatically reach enough customers to make free social media worth a try. Instead, the best way to reach specific customers is to pay for this service, and social media companies offer companies willing to pay highly targeted advertising services to very special segments of their user base, which makes paid content very profitable.
None of the above forms of social media marketing are exclusive to use, as companies can and often use several of these methods simultaneously.
How do you start social media marketing?
Before you start any type of social media marketing, you need to be very clear about what you want to achieve from it. Do not use this type of marketing simply because everyone uses it. Instead, you should clarify your goals through social media marketing, which fall within the broader context of your overall marketing strategy. Therefore, you need to use these goals to determine what form of activity is best for you and how you will measure your success. .
You also need to take some time to develop and define your brand image , so that everything you post on social media is consistent with it. The next step is to choose your platform or platforms, depending on the following:
- Your audience’s favorite platform, because it’s useless to share premium content if your target audience will never get to see it.
- The type of content you want to share. Some platforms are better suited to certain types of content than others.
You may have to do a little research to find out which platforms are best for you, and remember to keep your research up to date to make sure you’re still in the best place.
Useful tips about social media marketing
Optimal use of social media marketing depends partly on experience gained through practice, and partly on the use of health tools and techniques. There are a number of tips that can help you in this context, as follows:
1. Use programmed social media posting tools but give yourself the flexibility to respond to events
There are many publishing programming tools available today, some of which are platform-integrated and others that are stand-alone. These tools allow you to program specific posts, which allows you to plan your social interaction well in advance.
These tools help make social media marketing planning easier because you can schedule a post over several weeks, giving you the flexibility to set up a pre-planned post campaign . You can then spend time monitoring and responding to interactions on your automated posts, rather than thinking about preparing and publishing your next post in time.
2. Use monitoring tools on social media to listen to events and respond quickly to their developments
You can’t be in all places all the time, so instead, you can use social media monitoring tools to pick up on any mention of your company, allowing you to quickly respond to any unexpected signals.
This method is essential for dealing with negative coverage, but it’s also nice to be able to respond quickly to any compliment.
3. Use tools to monitor and evaluate your activity on social media
It is important that you monitor and evaluate your social media activity against your strategy goals. You need to know if your social media strategy is effective, in the sense that it is achieving what you want it to achieve. Your activity may result in broad engagement on a particular platform, but it does not mean anything if your goal is to attract people to your website Internet, so use the tools available on each platform to check your effectiveness.
4. Do not post the same content on several platforms, but share posts to support it
Every social media platform generally has its ideal content. Content that looks excellent on Instagram is unlikely to have the same effect on Twitter, and vice versa. It is better, then, to choose your platforms, and then tailor your content to them, rather than simply posting the same post on every platform.
However, you can share the same original content across multiple platforms. You can also share long-form texts from sites like LinkedIn and Medium via Twitter as a way to boost the reach of your posts, the idea here is to tailor a post to a specific platform while using the same core content.
5. Be sure to stay up-to-date with the benefits and services of your chosen platforms
It is very easy to do your research and make decisions about your chosen platform, but it is much more difficult to monitor the changes that occur on these platforms to ensure that you are keeping pace with their progress, and there are three reasons that make this effort, as follows:
- You may miss out on new features that could be very useful to your marketing.
- Your audience may move to another platform.
- Your content may not reach your target audience if the site changes in some way.
For at least the last few years, it has been expected that almost every business organization will use social media for marketing purposes, but social media marketing is not for everyone. Take your time making sure that you will reach your target audience, and that your marketing activity will add value to your company, and if this is not achieved, it may not be worth the time and effort required.