Published on August 12, 2017
Social Media Marketing can be intimidating at first especially when it comes to your business. There are plenty of questions to ask and even worst plenty of ‘experts” that give you advice, that sometime can confuse you even more. Questions like:
Yes all these may be overwhelming and puzzling at first. The good news is Social Media Marketing itself provides you with all of the answers. With a few simple steps, you can become confident in what you’re doing on social.
Understanding, optimizing and growing your social media presence with 4 simple steps. This process can be a complex as you like, but start with a few competitors and networks until you feel more comfortable.
Write out a list of your top 5 competitors. Visit their website and check out which social media channels are them using. So you’ll know where to start.
Site note: You’d be surprised with how many social media links on a website don’t actually link to an active network. They put the icon and forgot to link their profile, or even worst they don’t have a profile.
If everybody use Pinterest, it worth checking that out, even if that wasn’t on your radar. Do not discard a platform just because you don’t like it or you don’t use it. Social Media Marketing is about your audience, not about you taste and habits. For example: We get this all the time, B2B businesses that wants to be on Instagram, just because they heard that is trendy or even worst, just because their daughter love it. I am not saying that Instagram will not work for B2B, but think twice before. Why there is none of your competitors there?
Visit their profile, it might just be a forgotten profile or a gold mine. Be aware that there are some Social Media Marketing tools that allow you to mirror the same content in multiple platforms. (i.e. Repost everything you do on Instagram in Pinterest or distribute your Facebook posts to LinkedIn) so maybe there are just doing that for SEO purposes. On the other hand, they may have discovered a niche in a platform that none knows. If that is the case you can start digging in the same gold mine yourself.
Frequency, this is not a black and white answer. Even “gurus” will have a different point of view, but remember your first step is to overcome your competitors so for now forget about network potential and just write down their number of post per day. Check out which days are they using.
You need to be relevant to your audience, so if your competition only used images on social media, you’ll know that will be your starting point. There is no way you’ll get attention with just text in a video world. If you can go with videos at once, don’t hesitate just do it. It does have to be a major production.
Count comments, likes, replies and shares and calculate an average by week or month whatever you like best. This will give you a threshold of the level of angagement that you should aim for.
Dive in deeper to see if the social media messaging is similar if so what’s the engagement. Does one form of writing speak to you more than another? If so, analyze why? Take lots of notes and spend as much time as possible during this process to gain insights from your competitors on what’s working and what’s not…. And Yes you should read every post that they have write in the last 6 months.
Now put all this information in one page format (excel, word, google doc, etc…) and start asking questions. Once you finish this exercise you should know: Where are they posting, how often, which format, what topic and what result are they getting in just one slide.
Do the same exercise on your execution and put it side by side with your competitors. So you can easily spot opportunities, weakness and strengths of your Social Media execution. Look for:
When we think of social media marketing, we think of Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. However, it’s not a cookie cutter process. The mistake most brands make; they spend unnecessary time on social platforms that do not speak to their target audience. Use your time wisely. Once you’ve researched your competitors focus on the channels where you see, they have had the most success.
Based on your competitor analysis. Come up with a process.
Look for the hidden opportunities. Your competitors may only be posting a few times a week. Or they may be posting daily. Decide if you can commit to posting quality content daily or several times a day. If you competitors are re-posting someone else’s content, which is a valid option, try to understand the reason behind that. They may be doing it so their audience will not feel overwhelmed with their brand, or maybe just because they cannot produce fresh content to keep their Social Media calendar. Look, count and you’ll discover their strategy.
Your competitors can tell you exactly what kind of content you should be posting. During your analysis did you notice their audience engaged with statistics, quotes, humorous or fact-based copy? Try to identify which content had the most engagement. Try to look for a pattern and from this create your 3-4 communication pillars or talking points.
Voila! You are a Social Media Marketing expert, or at least a very knowledgeable Social Media marketeer in your industry. Social Media with the right action plan does not have to be complicated. Evaluate your competitors, decide on your main platforms, create your game plan and start posting away. Have fun and enjoy the process.
Have additional Social Media Marketing questions? Let us know we’d love to write about it. And remember no one knows your business as well as you do….once you have the answers to these questions.
After reading this you may decide that Social Media Marketing is not your thing. Well you can always use this list of questions the next time to sit down with your Social Media Marketing agency or Social Media Manager.