However, no matter what strategy you ultimately choose, there are five things that should definitely be in the conversation.
1. Create Valuable ContentWhile this might seem obvious, it’s worth stating because creating valuable content is possibly the most important thing you can do to increase your brand’s exposure on social media. To this end,”value” comes in many forms. The content could be funny, informative, controversial, or inspiring. As long as it enriches the people who see it, they will be more likely to share it with their friends giving you free “word of mouth” (or, in this case, “click of mouse”) advertising.
In addition to word-of-mouth advertising, creating valuable content for your blog, Facebook page, or other social media outlets will reflect positively on your brand. Like a bottle of wine with a fancy label, creating valuable content shows that you’re invested in creating a high-quality product.
2. Interact With Your CommunitySo people have started to notice your valuable content? That’s great, but it’s not worth much if you don’t follow it up with some good community interaction. Ideally, at least some of your valuable content ends with the opportunity for user interaction, also called a “call to action.” A call to action could ask the users to share the piece, it could ask them to join a debate, or it could just answer a question.
Basically, start a dialogue. It might be difficult to get people talking at first, but once you do, your posts will be a lot more interesting for other users to read and it will be more fun to maintain as well!
3. Localize Your Social Media PagesIdeally, you should create blogs or websites for each locality in which you do business. This is especially important for large businesses that span cities, or even states, but this tactic also can be valuable for smaller businesses with locations in different parts of a single city as well. These localized blogs will, of course, have locally relevant content, which will be valuable to the people living in the area. Localizing a blog will also increase your social media ranking for searches in that area and will make your website more tempting to other local businesses for cross promotional deals.
If you don’t want to spend the time or money building and maintaining a blog for each of your locations, it is still a good idea to build local social media pages that will share locally relevant content. This can be a good compromise for those who don’t want to mess around with buying a lot of domain names but still want to take advantage of local internet traffic.
4. Target Mobile Social Media UsersOf the 317.2 million people in the United States, fully half own a smart phone or tablet and of these people, half actively use social media on that device. That’s a potential audience of 79.3 million people — definitely not something you want to ignore. Unfortunately, native ads don’t show up on the Facebook mobile interface (not yet at least). If you were relying on native ads, therefore, you’re missing a large part of the market.
Also, Facebook has recently started using a program called StoryBump, which decides what Facebook users will see first in their News Feeds. The old program tried to pull posts that would match the interests of the individual and, while story bump does this to some degree, it relies more heavily on how many times an article is shared and when it was posted.
5. Consider Hiring a Full-Time Social Media ManagerIf you’re thinking about bumping your social media marketing efforts up a notch, you might want to consider bringing a full-time social media guru onboard. For small businesses that are operating on tight margins, it might be prudent to check all the financial factors before creating such a position. Make sure your company has the most affordable business rates for cutting energy costs to ensure you have enough room in the budget to make such a hire. Otherwise, you may want to just consider hiring a freelancer.
Either way, however, with these five tips under their belt they’ll be well on their way to building your company a large social media following.
What other tricks do you know for maximizing a brand’s social media presence?