Social media is now one of the most powerful tools that people use to boost their businesses, and the advantages are truly endless. Through a carefully managed social media strategy you can grow brand awareness, increase site traffic, gain new leads, interact with your customers, and reach out to a new audience, over time building a community of lifelong customers.
Whether you’re new to social media or you’ve been blogging for years there are five very important things you should always include in your social media efforts to ensure you’re not only generating new leads, but also keeping your customers around for the long haul.
If you want to attract new customers, and keep them hooked you need to produce something other than product promotions, because let’s face it most people aren’t likely to read a boring sales pitch. Enter content marketing, an amazing tool to draw in a new audience and maintain a loyal following of customers. When thinking about content marketing it’s important to focus on quality versus quantity, and producing amazing posts that your customers will care about.
You need to consider not only what you share, but to whom, when, and where. The kind of content you should create is something your audience finds useful, inspiring, and worth the read. You should find link-worthy content by looking at posts that already have generated a ton of clicks. Look at what they’re talking about, how it relates to your business and then strive to make it even better. Make a post longer, more thorough, up-to-date, or redesign it with some stunning visuals. Visuals such as photos, videos, and infographics are extremely valuable, as your audience often only has enough time to scan.
Another major thing to consider before you even start creating content is who your audience may be. If it’s your potential customers you need to consider what their interests are, their demographics, job position, needs, etc. Only when you better understand your audience can properly produce content they will be excited to read (and produce products and services that want to use).
You should also consider where you share your content. If you keep a blog for your business then you should share your posts on all your different social media sites. You should even carefully plan when you post on social media because your audience not only are active at certain times, but are also using different social media sites at different times, and days of the week.
Great content is key for building a loyal audience, but it’s difficult to acquire new customers unless you’re also thinking about distribution. Social media combined with email subscribers is the perfect combination.
Amazing content on your social media, combined with clear calls to action will result in a massive email list, full of new and repeat customers. There are several ways to build your email list but an easy to use email signup form on your blog is a great start. Try placing it in the header of your site, your byline, sidebar or the footer. Another method to gain subscribers is to give away something valuable. Think about free consultation, videos, private blog content, and early access to new features – something your customers want – that you can attach to your email signup form. They get something awesome for free in exchange for their email address.
Partnering with like-minded sites is a smart way to introduce your content and business to a new audience (potential customers) and also acquire those oh-so-important email addresses. Reach out to the right people that are in your niche market, interested in your content, and already have link to articles of the same topic. You can promote content created by these other brands, and they can do the same for you. This results in long-lasting partnerships and also increased visibility and traffic for both brands.
When you’re considering your partnerships be sure to work with companies and organizations that fully understand your audience, as that will ensure you will in fact be introduced to the right people and potential customers.
Social media is the easiest way to interact with your customers efficiently and effectively. Reach out to your users, and ask for feedback. When you ask engaging, and even challenging questions – for example user preferences, product reviews, etc. – take their responses seriously, making visible changes, your customers will notice and feel appreciated. When customers see they’re being listened to, they feel valued and will stay loyal to your brand. When you interact on social media you not only discover deep information about your customers, but you can also have instant conversations, organize events, and build new relationships all on real time.
Amazing design isn’t only about having nice images. It’s about cohesive and eye-catching branding, which is used consistently across all of your social media. Design is also about ensuring your technology is up to speed. Your design should look great and be functioning not only on your blog and website but in your emails, and mobile versions.
The opportunities for business through social media are limitless. Yet, you need a well-developed and maintained social media strategy in order to fully experience the advantages of social media at work. You can increase your awareness, interaction, partnerships, and leads through carefully looking into these five areas of social media. And all together these can combine to produce a loyal audience, and lifelong customers for your brand.