How are businesses using social media to project growth? From video platforms like YouTube and Tik Tok to the most popular social media channels like Facebook and Instagram, it's hard to know which ones work best for business owners.
The first thing you want to look at is your target demographics. You'll need to know your ideal client or customer’s gender, age range, and location. It's also worth looking into the primary demographics for each social media platform if you want to narrow down your choices.
For example, if you want to target millennials, your company should be on Instagram or LinkedIn; if you want to target Get X, make a Facebook account; and, of course, your best bet at selling to Genz Z is via Tik Tok.
How are Businesses Using Social Media? They're Picking Their Battles
When you first start marketing your company on social media, you'll want to start with just 1-3 platforms. While omnichannel marketing is a necessary strategy in the long run, focusing your attention and methods on specific platforms will:
A. Help you create a closer connection with your target audience, and
B. Narrow down time spent marketing
In other words, you need to pick your battles.
In cases where a demographic is hard to niche down, the intent of each social media platform can help you determine where you need to be to market your business. B2B companies will do better on LinkedIn and Facebook, whereas B2C can see substantial growth on Instagram, Pinterest, and Tik Tok.
Once you've decided on your social media platforms, here are 3 strategies you can use to get the best ROI.
1. Paid and Organic Marketing
Many business owners quickly hop on paid ads to grow their social media channels. As Sprout Social reports, "social media recently overtook paid search as an advertising channel, growing 25% YoY and exceeding $137 billion (just edging out search's $135 billion).”
That being said, be cautious of spending money on ads at the beginning of your social media journey. As one study suggests, consumers "have become increasingly resistant to traditional forms of advertising."
Organic social media marketing is a long game, and it can sometimes seem tedious. But here are organic social media strategies that are guaranteed to attract attention:
Use trending videos ideas and audio to fit your industry or niche
How-Tos and Tutorials (i.e., solve a problem for your audience for free)
2. Influencer Marketing
How are businesses using social media to grow brand awareness? Influencer marketing is a billion-dollar industry ($16.4 billion to be exact) that may be worth your while.
Teaming up with popular creators and/or a large amount of creators is an excellent way to get the word out about your product, service, or company in a short amount of time.
Marketing with influencers can go one of two ways:
You pay them: This can be a set amount per piece of content and per platform. Remember that influencers set their prices, so make sure you're aware of the current going rate. Also— have a contract!
Payment-in-Kind: This means giving a social media creator your product or service for free in exchange for an unbiased review, backlink, or shout-out. In this case, you only eat the cost of the product, so it's (almost) free marketing.
The problem with influencer marketing is that most businesses don't do their due diligence to collaborate with the right creator for their brand. You should look at more than just their social media following count to determine if this type of advertising will work. That means:
Asking for their media kit;
Analyzing their content performance;
Knowing the influencer’s average engagement rate.
3. Customer Service
When push comes to shove, the best and easiest way businesses use social media is simple: Customer service.
By customer service, we don't just mean responding to comments on your posts and answering Direct Messages.
That should be the bare minimum.
Instead, make sure you're connecting with your audience authentically. Create videos and posts in response to a comment's question (like this), and take at least 30 minutes per day to comment on other posts. Gary Vaynerchuk's $1.80 method is a great place to start!
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Tom Lewis, Partner | Creative Director
With over 20 plus years of award-winning advertising and design experience, Tom has spent much of his career working with a variety of companies throughout the southeast. His client list has included: UNC Health Lenoir, Hutchens Law Firm, Equifax, Georgia Pacific, Citi Group, Weyerhaeuser, The Atlanta Hawks, Randstad Staffing, Craven County Tourism, America Knits, Guardian Repellent, and The Shizzle Jerk Marinade.