Grace Odofin and Olamiju Oladele are Social Media Marketers at WSI Axon. In their webinar, they explained the various ways in which startups, entrepreneurs, and corporate brands can use Social Media Marketing to drive more leads to their landing pages, websites & blogs – and eventually how to convert these into returning customers.
Social media is a powerful platform to better reach and understand your audience. With Nigeria’s 33 million active social media users, every business in West Africa should be tapping into social media marketing. As the continent becomes more and more digitized, companies need to capitalize on every opportunity they have to get in front of their customers.
Keep reading to find out how social media marketing can help you reach your marketing goals, ways to engage your audience to take actions from your online platforms and social media do’s and don’ts.
What is Social Media Marketing?
Social Media Marketing (SMM), is the process of creating and sharing content across social networks to attract and engage your target audience, promote your brands and achieve your marketing goals.
So why is it essential to brands today? For West African businesses, social media is a powerful and affordable tool that allows you to better interact and understand 33 million Nigerians – not to mention, it’s faster and more cost-effective than traditional marketing like radio, newspaper, billboards, television etc.
With social media marketing you get to benefit the following:
- Social Media Marketing helps you tell your brand story
- Build more brand awareness
- SMM helps you build a community and build relationships with your audience
- SMM is a cost-effective avenue to reach your target audience
- Increase your overall ROI
- Telling your Brand Story– It helps consolidate your brand voice. If your story is inspiring and compelling, your interactions and conversions can go through the roof.
- Building Brand Awareness– With social media, you can grow your brand’s online presence and people’s awareness of it.
- Helps you Build a Community and Better Relationships with your Audience- SMM is not all about promotion and selling. It helps you build communities and form better relationships with your audience. Through this, you not only build trust with your audience but learn how to serve them better.
- Cost-Effective Avenue to Reaching your Audience- It is simply the most effective way to promote your products and services at little or no cost. It is far better than traditional marketing and you can reach a wide number of potential customers through paid campaigns that cost a fraction of what a billboard would.
- Increases Your Overall ROI- The return on investment usually trumps that of its traditional counterparts. For example, it’s not uncommon to see a well-executed Social Media campaign bring in more conversions than a radio jingle.
See Similar post- Social Media Strategies that works and convert
Fundamental Element For a Successful Social Marketing
Before creating your social media profiles, it is imperative that you follow best practices in order to give your SMM campaign a shot at success. We will look at the Who, What, Why and How’s of Social Media Marketing. Below are some essentials:
- Outline your Marketing Goals and Metrics
Here’s the “what” of social media marketing. What are you looking to accomplish with your marketing? What do you want to gain from your social media presence? Can you articulate the goal you want to achieve? Do you want more traffic to your website, to increase social media engagement, or to activate dormant audiences. Without having clear goals in mind, you won’t be able to map out your next steps.
For whatever goal you’ve got, make sure it’s a SMART:
- Specific- Make sure your goal is clear, and meaningful. The more specific your goals are, the greater your probability for success. For example, if your goal is to promote your new product, carve out detailed steps you’ll take to reach that goal.
- Measurable- Set quantitative goals. For example, your goal could be to drive 2500 new visitors to your website monthly. Quantifiable goals help you track your progress.
- Attainable– Can you attain the goals you set up for yourself? Sometimes, we can be overly ambitious. So you have to ask yourself, “Do you have the tools and resources to reach these goals?”
- Relevant- Check if your goals align with your company mission and bottom line. Because there’s no point in setting goals that are not relevant to your brand or its long-term aspirations.
- Time-bound- Set a deadline for when you want to achieve your goals. For instance, you might want to generate leads through social media ad campaigns within the next 3 months.
- Research Your Audience
This is the “who” aspect of your social media. Who are your ideal customers? Where do they spend their time online? Which social media platform do they use most?. One way to put these insights to use is to craft a detailed persona profile of who your ideal customer is. When you have a thorough understanding of your customer’s motivations and concerns, you’re able to
- Determine Your Brand Value Proposition
Your value proposition answers the “Why” of your marketing. A value proposition is a promise of value to be delivered and communicated. It is also a belief from the customer about how much value will be delivered, experienced and acquired. If you can’t define value, you certainly won’t be able to show value. Ask yourself why your audience should pay attention to what you put out? Is your product or service a must-have? Your value proposition should show how you stand out from your competitors or any competitive advantages you possess.
- Determine The Social Platform/Contents To Use
Determining the social media platform and creating engaging content factors into the “How” of your marketing. Identifying which platform resonates most with your brand and audience by using your persona profile. E.g. If you run an eCommerce business, then you should consider using Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest to establish your online presence. Also determining what content to push out is very important. You can conduct keyword research to find out what your audience is looking for or how they keep tabs on their favorite content through social media. Conducting keyword research will better make your content visible.
- Research your Competitors
To reap dividends from Social Media Marketing, you need to research your competitors as well. This is called brand monitoring or social listening. By researching your competitor, you get valuable insight into practices and approaches that could appeal to your customers. You can also go through your competitors’ reviews and comments to see their audience’s complaints and concerns. With that, you can leverage that insight and figure out opportunities for a competitive advantage.
- Stay focus on what is making the biggest impact
To determine what is making the biggest impact on social media, you need to watch your data and metrics. By embedding analytics into your social media pages, you get to key in on the types of content your audience is engaging with. It also informs you on what your strongest and weakest platforms are and what the reasons for that could be.
Social Media Do’s and Don’ts to get more Leads
Simply having a social media presence is not enough. If you want it to impress your customers and yield a strong ROI, there’s a method to the madness.
- Do complete your social media: Ensure that you have complete and active profiles on all your social networks. Incomplete profiles will only hurt your engagement. Partially completed profiles are not considered credible. Also, it’s advisable to choose a name or handle that is easily distinguishable.
- Create a posting schedule: You can’t be at your computer 24/7 but you can take advantage of scheduling tools like Hootsuite, CoSchedule, Sprout Social, Oktopost, Buffer, and HubSpot to plan and prep your posts in advance. Posting frequently is also ideal. It is important to keep your content fresh on social timelines. Posting at the right time each day is critical too – different audiences are active at different times.
- Do interact with your audience: Simply posting and sharing content on social media won’t work without communicating with your audience. You should be exceptionally responsive with your customers. Listen to their needs, and respond accordingly. You should also look to publicly recognize people who retweet, favorite, and mention your organization on social media. Did you know that 83% of your Facebook fans, and 71% of your Twitter followers, now expect a response from you on the same day that they asked the question? 32% of Twitter users now expect a response within just 30 minutes. When you make your audience feel heard and acknowledged, they’re more likely to become raving fans, and your most loyal social media ambassadors. You need to understand your audience and create unique content that is specifically geared toward them.
- Use visuals: Social media today says content with relevant images racks up 94% more views than content without images. Compared to other types of content, visual content is more than 40x more likely to get shared on social media.
- Use video content: Video is the most engaging type of content across social media platforms. Create at least some form of video content to maximize engagement. Be sure to upload video directly to your platform choice rather than posting a link to an outside website like YouTube. This way your video will autoplay as people land on it while scrolling through their feeds.
- Do watch your grammar and spelling: Before making a post or update, ensure you’ve used one proofreader on it. Create your social media updates in a document or spreadsheet and proofread them before sharing. Making grammar mistakes and spelling errors reduces your brand’s credibility. At WSI, a number of our marketers use Grammarly to keep their content error-free.
- Do make use of social media advertising: Social media ads are one of the quickest and most cost-effective methods to connect with your target audience. These ads provide profitable opportunities and are a great way to boost your digital marketing campaigns. Paid social media ads ensure that your post is seen by your potential customers at the right places at the right time.
List of paid social media platforms:
- Facebook Advertising: Facebook allows for both text and photo content to be displayed on your advertisement. You’re able to target and segment your audience based on interests, demographics, and geography while also determining how much you want to pay per click.
- Instagram: Instagram’s ad platform works the same way as Facebook – thanks, Mark Zuckerberg! You can display ads in a variety of formats. Best of all, it allows for very specific and granular customer segmentation.
- Linkedln: Social media plays an important role in B2B relationships; 64% of brands follow other businesses on social media. LinkedIn Ads allows you to better engage with these B2B customers. There are two paying options in LinkedIn Ads: cost per click or cost per mille (cost per 1,000 impressions).
- Twitter: Twitter allows you to choose the objective of your campaign, including tweet engagements (retweets, favorites, replies), website clicks, app installs or engagements, followers, or even leads, and it only charges you when your specified action occurs. Twitter also allows a maximum daily budget and maximum cost per action.
- Don’t Abuse Hashtags: Using appropriate hashtags is a convenient way to categorize and search content on social media networks. It should be used for that purpose only. Don’t turn every word in a post (or a full-sentence!) into a hashtag, or stuff unrelated hashtags into your post. When used correctly, hashtags increase your online visibility and followers. When used in excess, it looks spammy and turns customers off. Also, you should be mindful of which social networks actually utilize hashtags (Twitter, Instagram) and which networks tend to avoid hashtags (Facebook)
- Don’t share the exact same message repeatedly: Sharing the same message, again and again, is lazy and does not humanize your company at all.
- Don’t ignore comments: According to conversion social, there is a 25% increase in customer advocacy when you answer customer feedback or complaints. People tend to leave feedback on social media. However, the worst thing you can do is to try and hide from it. When negative feedback occurs, make sure you:
- Respond quickly and in a respectful, polite manner;
- Resolve conflicts one-on-one. Shift conversations from a public place like comments to email telephone communication.
- Don’t forget to include links: You must include links to a landing page, a blog page, a page to shop, a contact us page or anything specific that will get your followers over to your website. The goal of posting on social media is two fold:
- Getting more likes on your social media page.
- You want to guide customers to your website.
To achieve these you need to include links to your landing pages, Blog pages or to your website.
In conclusion, Rome wasn’t built in a day. However, with consistency, time, and effort, You are sure to reach great success with the following tips given.