Digital Marketing: Five Universal Social Media Basics for Brands
The majority of brands now know it’s crucial to have a solid social media strategy as part of your digital marketing efforts. However, experience and know-how are vital if you are going to get things right, especially since there are critical differences between personal and brand social media accounts. The following article looks to provide some universal social media tips for brands to follow.
1. First impressions count
It’s tempting to want to jump into posting updates, but you should stop and think before you do that. The first thing you want to do is to set-up your social media accounts, so they give the best impression of your brand. You want to make sure you have consistent branding across social media, and your fans can instantly recognize each profile belonging to your brand.
Various things go into this, such as having a simple name, a concise bio description, and good quality images. If you start sending out tweets from an empty account, then you are already giving off a negative impression of your business. So, take some time to get the basics right before you start with your social media activity.
2. Have a plan
Many brands start their social media activity with the best of intentions, but it’s incredibly easy for other aspects of your business to get in the way. The bottom line here is that if you only do your social media when it’s convenient, then it’s going to come across as haphazard and chaotic.
One of the best ways to avoid this is to have a clear plan for when you are going to post content and which topics you will cover. By doing this, you ensure your content will be more consistent, and you will also make the process for creating content more manageable. The last thing you want is to waste time wondering what to post next.
3. There are no prizes for being on every social media platform
Many brands think there is a competition to be on every social media site. So, they sign-up for them all without thinking. The reality is what’s most important is the results you get from your collective social media efforts.
It may surprise you to know that sometimes this is a case of being on only one platform but doing it incredibly well. Others may feel the need to be on three or four, but if you are on more than that, you are probably doing things wrong. So, start by doing things as well as you can on one to two platforms and then perhaps add a third. Remember also that each platform has pros and cons and they aren’t all suitable for all brands.
4. Communicate rather than sell
It’s disappointing that many brands view social media platforms as merely places to sell. Of course, this may well be because they think they have limited time, and that’s all they have time to do. The reality is though this approach is entirely counter-productive because users will not pay intention to this approach.
If you look at social media platforms as a whole, they exist for conversations, connections, and collaboration, so users aren’t visiting them with the primary purpose of buying products and services. It may be an inconvenient truth for a lot of brands, but getting things right on social media takes time. Your first intention should be to connect with your fans, get to know them, and produce content they will love. If you can achieve that then eventually a small percentage of them will become customers.
5. Respect each platform
Each social media platform has its pros and cons, which means they are all uniquely different. However, some brands make the mistake of thinking they are the same, and you can’t treat Facebook the same as Pinterest. Again, if you are selective with which platforms you are on, you can spend the time to master each one.
It’s certainly worth doing enough research to work out which times are best to post and the size to change your images to. There are different rules for hashtags as well; for example, you should only use a few on Twitter, but a lot on Instagram. The more you respect the platform you are posting to, the more success you are likely to find in growth and engagement.
Most brands now have a digital marketing strategy, and social media will play a significant part in that. However, getting things right takes time, effort, and know-how. Hopefully, this article has provided some useful pointers to at least get the basics right. Remember, first impressions count, have a plan, there’s no need to be on every platform, communicate rather than sell, and respect each platform.