Social media for companies is used as a tool to reach a mass number of customers within various market segments and niche areas.
Customers interact with multiple brands through various social platforms and you are probably missing out if you’re not interacting with them directly through these platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Pinterest.
The best thing about social media marketing is that it delivers a huge amount of benefits for companies.
This is done by increasing its brand awareness among the consumers, creating outstanding success to the business and most importantly, an increase in sales and market growth.
What is Social Media Marketing?
Social media marketing or in the shorter term, SMM, is a type of online marketing model that comprises of creating and sharing content throughout different social media networks. This is done in an attempt to achieve the desired business goals mainly marketing and branding goals.
The social media marketing activities include promoting your business in a broader market segment by posting and sharing of texts as well as interactive multimedia contents such as images and videos.
This will create an increase in customer engagement while selling your products and services on the various social networking platforms.
In this article, we have outlined a clear introduction to using social media for companies including some additional information and tips on how you can utilize this as a tool to enhance your social business presence.
Using these tips, you can now learn to develop a strategic social media marketing plan for your company in order to stay updated with the current business trends as well as be aware of the rising competitors in your competing industry.
The Importance of Social Media for Companies in Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
As the digital era is evolving, research has found that almost 74% of consumers highly depend on social networks before making purchasing decisions.
They do this by checking out the company’s profile on their social networks or reviewing comments from past buyers who used to purchase their products and services before.
Therefore, companies need to maintain their online business reputation on social networks because their business profiles are the first things that consumers will search for in search engines.
This shows that social media is a significant component in aligning with your company’s SEO strategy. Take a look at the Great Conversation Prism below for a better view of the social media landscape.
The Great Conversation Prism
Introduced in 2008 by Brian Solis, The Conversation Prism is a form of visual map of the social media landscape. According to this prism, your audience can use it to:
- Explore the idea behind social media landscape that goes beyond Facebook, Twitter & Instagram.
- Discover new social channels and ways to benefit from it.
- Employ social channels as a medium to create content.
- Analyze the social landscape as a means to create new social media strategies
- Display the crucial significance of social media for your company
Check out the social media landscape below:
Essential Strategies of Social Media for Companies
Given that social networks are an important digital marketing component for many brands of various products and sizes, it is crucial for you to fully utilize this tool to its fullest potential.
This is to prevent you from not missing out on big opportunities while expanding your businesses to larger markets.
Here are the top 6 strategies of social media marketing that you can apply to boost your business from your competitors:
1. Use Varied Content Types
Posting the same contents all the time can be boring to your target audience and this can seriously impact your business presence as the desired engagement goal is not achieved.
Thus, you can use various content types other than texts such as photos, interactive videos, blog posts, and even infographics to encourage the consumer’s engagement in your social sites. From having these elements, you can easily identify what your target audience favors most.
In addition, there are 5 types of video forms that you can add to your visual content strategies such as:
1. Live Videos
If your company has a significant following, Facebook Live, Instagram Live, YouTube Live or other live streaming platforms can be the best ways to connect with your target audience effortlessly.
Live videos are usually effective for press conferences, product launches, behind-the-scene looks, etc. While you are effectively engaging with your customers, live videos also allow you to interact with your consumers through Q&A sessions and live chats.
2. Tutorial Videos
The interesting part about tutorial videos is that it visually highlights your company’s products and services that your customers can use these videos as guidance. Additionally, tutorial videos are proven to be among the most frequently shared on social platforms.
The strategies for doing tutorial videos need to be clear, educational and entertaining. Most importantly, the information posted needs to be visible for your customers to read and the video is not too lengthy.
3. Informational videos
Informational videos can be about any topic and companies need to make sure that these videos are interactive, insightful and unique in order o increase their consumer’s engagement.
However, they can be pretty boring if the information is not developed efficiently. So, it is important for you to make sure the video content is not only interesting and attractive but also encourages the viewers to share it across multiple social networks.
Here are some helpful tips before adding informational videos in your marketing content:
- Create videos with contents that match your brand identity
- Avoid making too lengthy or overly-detailed videos.
- Analyze which videos perform the best to benchmark for making future informational videos.
- Be prepared to invest more effort and time in these videos to deliver better quality
- Be attentive on what customers say on your social page
4. Behind-the-scenes Videos
Behind-the-scene videos are one of the great ways to allow your consumers to feel like they’re virtually a part of your company’s day-to-day operations with your team members, the manufacturing processes involved, your offices and more.
This form of video provides a method for companies to build customer brand loyalty and develop a brand identity. A memorable behind-the-scenes video will instill a strong relationship between your company and your customers. Thus, creating a firm brand identity.
Tips for adding behind-the-scenes videos to your content marketing:
- Add personality when filming these videos.
- Think about your company daily operations that your customers may find appealing to watch
- Use these videos as a way to enlighten your customers about your products, your brand, your people.
- Include your customers or your company personnel in your behind-the-scenes video.
5. User-Generated Videos
User-generated videos are used to encourage the audience to share the contents they created by sharing these videos through links to give them more exposure.
Viewing the user-generated videos will allow your company to personally feel the user’s personalities as well as their interests that they exposed in their videos.
Tips for adding user-generated videos to your content marketing:
- Encourage users to be creative and entertaining with their video content.
- Be sure to properly give credits to original creators for the content and thank them.
- Recommend the featured users to share their content within their circle of friends/mutuals.
- Encourage other users to vote and share high-quality video content that they like the most.
- Promote giveaways or special competition linked to user-generated videos.
2. Try Influencer Marketing:
Influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing method that involves collaborations and endorsements from well-known influencers and social groups.
They are known for having a special level of knowledge and/or social influence within their social environment in the respective fields.
Thus, using influencer marketing for your company will create a higher level of consumer engagement, be it the current or potential new consumers, while boosting your brand credibility from your competitors.
3. Run Cross-Channel Campaigns:
Multi-channel marketing is a method of using various channels to engage with a large number of consumer segments. Also known as cross-channel marketing, it allows users to complete the desired conversions on any channels that they are comfortable with.
In using social media for companies, you can run cross-channel campaigns throughout different social platforms to promote your brand. This is because cross-channel marketing campaigns offer extensive opportunities for your company to take full advantage of from the advertising and branding efforts across various integrated channels.
4. Use Happy Customers as Brand Advocates
Recommendations and real-time reviews are proven to be more trustworthy and encouraging for consumers to rely on. Your loyal customers are the best representatives for your brand due to the reviews and recommendations posted on your company’s social media page.
This effort not only allows an increase in your company’s brand awareness but they are also used as social proof to instill trust and faith among customers in your business.
Listed below are 5 essential steps to turn happy customers as brand advocates:
- Provide excellent service
- Personalize it
- Build a community
- Find advocates
- Start generating customer-driven buzz
Tools to Manage and Analyze Social Media for Companies
After getting the strategies executed, how can you keep track of all your social media tools in your business? From creating to publishing these media contents, it can be pretty daunting for in-house marketers with these jobs that they need to get it done daily.
Thankfully, with the existence of many social media management tools out there, the workflows for your in-house marketers have never been easier to do.
This is because these tools can save a lot of time as it provides convenience for your company to get your content reached to the right target audience at the right time.
Here are the top 5 tools that you can use to manage and analyze social media marketing for your business:
Buffer is known as one of the simplest social media management tools that allow you to plan and schedule posts on various social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and so on.
Besides, Buffer provides an advantage that speeds up the process of posting on social media and this feature is accessible through mobile apps or with browser extensions.
Hootsuite is an online application that allows you to manage all of your social networking sites in one place.
It also allows you to plan your posts on various social platforms as well as analyzing the performance of these posts. This advanced functionality has made it an easier solution for larger teams to manage social sites seamlessly.
Just like Hootsuite, Sprout Social is a platform that lets you schedule your social media posts across multiple networks at once – from social media scheduling to data tracking and reporting.
The key advantage of Sprout Social is that it emphasizes on tracking the data of user’s social media activities while enabling an effective social media strategy decision making.
Also, Sprout Social is one of the few social media management tools that have Customer Relationship Management (CRM) features. Having this advantage allows your company to serve your targeted customer segments better and eventually build firm relationships with them.
MeetEdgar is an application that provides social media scheduling and automation features to easily manage and plan your social media posts.
It further focuses on the management and grouping of your content while allowing you to automate the re-publishing process of the best posts across different social networking platforms.
Spredfast is a social marketing platform that emphasizes on content creation, posting and data analytics.
This tool mostly aims at large corporations that look for complex all-in-one social media management solution.
Besides, Spredfast also lets you easily collaborate with larger teams, plan and analyze the results of your social media activity on a bigger scale.
Key Benefits of Social Media for Companies
Almost 90% of marketers have claimed that social media platforms generated immense market exposure for their business and that is just one of its several benefits.
Since social sites are now considered as significant tools in every marketing strategy, its key benefits for companies are substantially proven to be impactful in succeeding market opportunities.
According to Social Media Examiner, around 96% of marketers worldwide currently engage in social media marketing, but 85% of them aren’t sure of which tools are best to use.
Thus, we have listed some of the key benefits of social media for companies in promoting their business.
1. Increased Brand Awareness
As most marketers know, social media is one of the most cost-efficient digital marketing methods used in coordinating contents and increase business presence.
Implementing this method can greatly improve your brand awareness since you are marketing your products and services throughout various customer segments.
With features such as “like” and “share”, each marketing content that is posted on your social sites can be spread across to a new network of individuals that could lead them to be your potential customers.
The more people know about your company, the better the brand recognition. Thus, it is no doubt that using a social media platform does benefit your company and if it’s consistently used, it can generate a wider target audience for your brand.
2. Improved Search Engine Rankings
Using social media platforms is not just about posting marketing content to get your business some site traffics, but it also needs a substantial amount of effort to maintain its ranking on search engines such as Google.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is very important in maintaining higher page rankings while gaining traffic to your website. This is because being able to rank #1 on search results can improve your site traffic and ultimately creates positive outcomes for your business.
You can achieve this by creating and including high-quality marketing content such as blogs, infographics, visual graphics, or even company’s information like pictures of the members in the organization, company events, etc. Having these elements will make your company profile look solid and trustworthy.
Once you begin sharing insightful posts, your target audience will ‘like’ and ‘share’ them which consequently creates more opportunity for your company to expand your business and directly increase their search engine rankings.
3. Higher Conversion Rates
Higher business visibility will lead to higher opportunities for conversion. Every blog post, graphic elements like videos and images or even positive customer reviews may be the influencing factors that can increase your company’s website audience which then leads to rising in traffic.
Most marketers have known that social media marketing provides businesses to deliver convincing impressions through a humanization factor.
In other words, when brands are being interactively shared through frequent content sharing and posts on social media, it personifies the brand. Studies have found that it has almost reached 100% lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing.
Thus, we can prove that when a brand is interactively shared online on social sites, your company can build higher brand credibility within your customers who follow your brand’s accounts. Hence, higher conversion rates on your existing traffic.
4. Better customer satisfaction
We all have known that social sites are a platform for us to connect and make new connections. From a business perspective, the humanization factors in communicating your company brand through these platforms have been proven crucial in promoting better customer satisfaction.
You can easily increase your company brand’s customer satisfaction by responding to your customers’ comments rather than an automated message on the posts you shared on a media platform. Being able to recognize and respond to the customers’ comments show that your company has high attention to your customers’ needs.
Every customer interaction on your brand’s social network creates an opportunity to publicly promote positive customer relationship. and therefore, leads to higher customer satisfaction.
5. Improved Brand Loyalty
For any business, it is obvious that one of your main business goals is to create a loyal customer base. Considering customer satisfaction and brand loyalty usually come together, it is vital for you to constantly engage with the customers to maintain the bond with them.
Your company should always know that social network not only serves as a platform to share and post your brand’s products and other promotional marketing campaigns. But, customers also use these platforms as a medium to connect with your brand where they can communicate directly with your business.
Therefore, your company should utilize this technology advancement to its fullest potential when using social media marketing by consistently improving brand loyalty to their highly influential consumers.
Most of us know that setting up social media profiles are almost free and this has been considered as the most cost-efficient tool in one of the marketing strategies.
Being cost-effective can deliver a great advantage for your company as you can gain a great return on investment from any paid promotion that you decide to invest in and maintain a higher budget for other marketing expenses.
Say you decide to do paid advertising on social networks, it is advisable to start small first so that you will know what you can expect from it in the short term. Once you are comfortable with it, you may tune it that is adaptable with your current marketing strategy along with your budget.
Without you knowing, you have sustainably increased your conversion rates and therefore, gaining high returns on investment just by spending a small amount of time and money to promote your business.
7. Gain Marketplace Insights
Gaining marketplace insights is one of the most profound key benefits in utilizing social media for companies. What better ways to gain insights about your customer needs and demands other than communicating directly to them?
Using social networking platforms will allow your company to attain useful information that can help you progress in the industry you are operating in as well as understanding the customer demographics thoroughly.
Another key advantage of it is that your company can segment the needs of your consumers from the gained marketplace insights. This will able your company to categorize the syndication lists based on content that can achieve high customer impressions.
Thus, social media is a perfect tool for your company to measure conversion rates based on your posts on multiple social networking platforms while generating revenue from it.
Now that you have grasped the idea of social media for companies along with its strategies and key benefits, we have summarised 3 easy steps on how you can identify the right social media for your company.
Using the Right Social Media for Your Company
1. Seek out your target audience
Before setting up social accounts for your company, always ask yourself first who is your target audience? Which platforms do they spend most of their time? What are they trying to look for from these social sites?
You may also want to find out what social platforms do your competitors use to engage with their audience. A simple Google search will help you find out what social media networks that your target audience most active on.
Check out this web article: Comparing Social Media for Marketing to get a comparison of various social media platforms for your company.
2. Define Your Objective on Social Media
Have you discovered what are your social media marketing goals? Are you planning to expand your customer engagement? Spread word-of-mouth? Or discover new target markets on social media?
Therefore, a thorough social media audit will simply allow you to identify gaps in your current social media marketing strategies. Do you want to:
- Grow your customer base?
- Improve your customer service and promote brand loyalty?
- Create a specific channel for customers’ feedback?
- Increase your website traffic?
- Conduct market research?
- Inform your target markets about your latest products and services?
Rather than targeting a certain number of followers that you plan to gain on your social networks, pay more attention to what are the right platforms that can increase your customers’ engagement to your brand.
Thus, you should have known that having well-defined social network objectives deliver a huge impact on your goals while aligning them with your current marketing strategies.
3. Identify Your Resources and Skills
For businesses, it is important for you to acknowledge the right resources and skills in order for you to carry out a successful social media marketing plan.
This is because each social network platform complements differently in terms of skills and the resources required. Therefore, you should know that it is not only about making sure your business propagates with the right social media platform, but also to have sufficient skills and resources to use it efficiently and effectively.
Therefore, choosing the right social media platforms for your company is really important so that you can create content that’s optimized for each social media network.
Along with that, check out the 9 ways you can maximize your social media marketing when you have discovered the right platform for your company.
9 Ways You Can Maximize Your Social Media Marketing
1. Creating a social media strategy
A social media marketing strategy basically concludes every detail that you plan to do and hopefully achieve on your social sites. The more specific your strategy is, the better the execution will be.
The basis of this strategy is to make sure your social media goals are parallel to your business strategies and identifying the key metrics at the same time.
– Plan S.M.A.R.T Goals
You can set your social media goals using the S.M.A.R.T framework – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-bound. Having these components in setting up your goals will allow you to gain high ROI on your social sites.
– Keep track of significant metrics
In social sites, retweets and likes are known as vanity metrics. They are easy to be tracked but it’s hard to determine their real value. Instead, you should focus more on elements like leads generated, web referrals or even conversion rates.
For more information, you can check out these 19 essential social media metrics so that you can know its significance in social media marketing.
In addition, you can refer to the social media marketing plan below to get a clearer overview of planning a social media strategy.
2. Conducting a social media audit
Social media audit is a process of tracking down all of your company’s social sites while eliminating any fake accounts and gathering information about each of these sites in one place.
You can click to this article on conducting a social media audit as it will provide you clearer guidelines for the auditing process. Also, check out the sample of the social media audit template below for your reference or get yourself the free template here.
3. Using a social media content calendar
Social media content calendar is considered as one of the most crucial tools to include in your social networking toolkit.
Unlike normal calendars, a social media content calendar is a tool that helps you plan and schedule your future social content using the added values of various social platforms.
The key advantages of using a social media calendar are:
- Discover and improve inconsistencies in content publishing
- Take notes on important dates and events
- Find the right content mix for your social sites
- Make sure your content is up-to-date and performs efficiently
- Making collaborations with your teammates and distribute resources effectively
- Provide transparency within your company
If you need more information on how to use a social media content calendar, click here to check out the clear guidelines on creating your own social media calendar.
You can also refer to the sample of the calendar below or download here to customize your own social media content calendar.
4. Creating an editorial content calendar
The editorial content calendar is another type of calendar that is favored by most social media professionals.
You can use this tool for compiling all of your content projects in one place and help you plan and schedule for each content release. You can use Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel to create and organize your calendar.
Besides that, you must include these important components in your content calendar:
- Title or a brief intro of your content
- Links to support your content
- The author
- Social sites that you plan to promote
For a clearer overview of the editorial content calendar, you may refer to the sample below or click here to download and customize your own editorial content calendar.
5. Making a social media analytics report
Recording and analyzing your social media analytics are essential in justifying the values of your social sites.
If you’re not sure where to start, you can check out here as your guidelines to use social media analytics. This article also provides you a list of useful analytic tools that you can apply to make your reporting process easier.
In your analytics report, you should include a few critical components to ensure that you are able to keep track of the social media metrics for the various social sites. These components are:
- Number of followers gained/lost
- Audience engagement
Additionally, you can refer to the sample of the social media analytics report below as your guide to record social media metrics for your different social channels.
6. Preparing a social media report
The social media report compiles all the findings from your social media analytics report for you to present them to your company’s stakeholders.
Not only you include the findings from the analytics report, but the social media report also highlights recommendations and the lessons learned for your future social media marketing strategies.
Take a look at the sample of a social media report below for your reference or download here to create your own social media reporting template.
Also, you may click here to get a clearer understanding of preparing a social media report by following the steps listed in the article.
7. Choosing the right social media image sizes
Moving on, choosing the right social media image sizes for your social page can be a hassle as social sites constantly update their design every few months.
You thought you had chosen the right image size for your company’s Facebook page header. Until you realized the image looks like it’s been resized or pixelated.
Referring to the links below, it will guide you on how to pick the right image sizes according to the social networks you’re using for your company:
In addition to that, you can also click here for more additional information and a clearer overview of picking the right image sizes for your networks. Better yet, get yourself a free and always up-to-date social media image sizes cheat sheet here.
8. Writing social media bios
After choosing the right image sizes for your page, it is important to know what exactly you need to add in your social media bios for your target audience to see.
This is because your company’s social media bio plays a huge role in clarifying what you do in the business and influences your followers’ first impression on your company.
The key details that you need to add on your bio of any social platforms are:
- Who you are
- Where are you located
- What does your business provide
- Additional topics that attract you
- How can your target audience contact you
You can refer to the sample of writing social media bios below or click here to download free social media bios template for every platform that you plan on using.
In addition to that, you can read these guidelines on how to deliver a well-written social media bios for every network for your company.
9. Doing bulk upload social media posts
Doing single posts publishing across different social platforms can be a real hassle especially when you are having tight deadlines to meet.
Thus, the method of doing bulk upload social media posts will make your job easier and there are various applications that you can use to do so. We suggest you use Hootsuite as its bulk composer tool allows you to schedule up to 350 posts in advance throughout different social sites.
In doing bulk posting on Hootsuite, you will need to create a bulk post file in a form of CSV. This means you have to put all of your social media posts on programs that use CSV. We recommend you use Google Sheets to create the CSV file or you can also use TextEdit or TextWrangler.
In the end, you will see your posts are presented in a calendar view (refer to the sample below). For more information, you may click to this link here to refer the steps listed on how to do bulk posting in Hootsuite.
This concludes that using social networking platforms offer plenty of key benefits for your company especially in this current era of modern technology.
Apart from that, it is crucial for you to have strategic plans when using social media marketing strategies. This is because having strong social media strategies allow your company to stay on track and able to outperform your competitors towards achieving your business goals.
Also, the utilization of social media management tools is essential when using social networking platforms. The reasons are because it provides you real-time data analysis and updates on how your social sites are progressing at the moment.
We hope this article will help you understand the importance of social media for companies.