A Guide to Social Media Marketing Strategies
Social media marketing, sometimes referred to as Web 2.0 marketing, is an evolving and dynamic discipline to help businesses connect with their audience on an ever increasing number of networks. Social media is defined as “a social interaction that takes place online, in public, rather than within the boundaries of a physical organization or brand.” The social aspect of media can be thought of as similar to the “buzz” that occurs after a big event or announcement.
It’s all about sharing information with people through various mediums, including message boards, podcasts, video, and social networking sites. Social media sites are many and varied, and each one can provide a unique outlet for businesses. While the traditional terms such as digital advertising and e-marketing are still quite dominant in academia, social media marketing has become increasingly popular for researchers and practitioners alike.
As such, companies are turning to social media marketing strategy to attract a larger number of audience. The primary aim of this strategy is to create a bridge or connection between businesses and their target audience. This connection can either be established through search engine optimization techniques (SEO), social media marketing, or any combination thereof.
For instance, an organization may create a website to provide useful information and gather audience feedback and use this feedback to improve its product and services. Or, a company may post links to blogs and articles that the organization has created, which provides valuable insights and knowledge to the audience, and encourages them to pass this information onto other potential customers who may be interested in what the company has to offer.
However, there is a much simpler way to create a connection with the target audience: social media marketing. Brands should start off by setting up an account on either Facebook or Twitter and inviting their existing customers to join. This provides the opportunity for the audience to “like” the brand and provides them with the opportunity to connect with the brand. Most importantly, it allows them to spread the word about the brand – leading to more engagement with the product and ultimately leading to increased sales.
The strategy should continue to evolve based on the feedback the organization receives from its Facebook and Twitter followers. Once the initial engagement phase is over, brands must sustain interest in the product and continue the campaign. For instance, a brand may use Facebook and Twitter to promote special offers, promotions, contests, or product teasers. These strategies should be regularly developed based on the responses. However, brands need to remember not to overdo the promotion efforts as these could have a negative effect on sales. Social media marketing strategy should be guided by the product’s needs to make sure that the efforts are geared towards increasing customer retention.
On the cost-effective side, SMM is cost-effective as opposed to SEO, which is more costly. SMM is free of cost and can reach a wider audience. Another advantage of SMM strategies is that they can easily be monitored and compared to ensure that the investment is made in areas where it is most needed. SMM platforms include Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Tumblr, and Instagram. These platforms provide tools for businesses to communicate with customers, and they also encourage engagement.
It is important for businesses to create a strategy that will help them attract the right target audience. The right strategy will allow brands to effectively communicate with the right people, in the right way and at the right time. A SMM strategy is built around the goals and objectives of the brand. Therefore, it becomes imperative for businesses to clearly define their goals before implementing any social media marketing efforts. This will help the company to measure the ROI and identify the return on investment in future.
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