Social media plays an invaluable role in marketing. And with so many social media platforms out there, there's an outlet to suit any industry, company, product or service.
From building and personifying your brand to targeting new leads and engaging with your following, social media offers a multitude of benefits for your business.
However, it's not as simple as jumping on a platform and sharing a post every now and then. Using social media platforms for marketing requires a systematic approach.
In this article, we run you through some basics in using social media for marketing, as well as some specific pointers for individual platforms.
How to Use Social Media Platforms For Marketing
It’s important to consider what you want to achieve from social media, as this will determine how you use the platforms.
For example, if you want to capture leads, you should create posts directing followers to gated content. On the other hand, if inbound marketing is your focus, use educational content, promote your products and share the story of why you do what you do.
Another thing to consider is whether to use the platforms organically or paid. Twitter works well organically, whereas businesses tend to do better on Instagram and Facebook by using paid posts (particularly since the platforms change their algorithms).
This is because paid posts give you more control over who sees your post. You’re more likely to be able to reach leads who have never even heard of your brand.
Make sure you advertise your social media accounts on your website, in-store, on banners, or wherever is appropriate for your business. If people like what you do, they will want to follow you on social media.
There is no one-size-fits-all, and it may take some trial and error to work out what approach is best for your business.
Here are a few ways your business can utilise the top social media platforms.
Let’s start with the basics: the general setup of your Facebook page. Make sure you’ve chosen a CTA (call-to-action) and that you keep your page up-to-date with all your details. Keep your page clear and organised; ensure it’s a good representation of your business.
Another way to foster interactions with your prospects and customers is by creating a Facebook group for your business (in addition to your page). Groups generally show up more often on people’s timelines.
Twitter is a great option for sharing ideas and starting discussions. Share a mixture of your own content and external content relevant to your industry.
Arguably one of the most important things to note about Twitter is the use of hashtags. They help users find the content they’re interested in. Use popular hashtags as well as those unique to your business or campaigns.
To spread your word further, you can try partnering with influencers and other relevant accounts to share your posts.
Twitter tends to take quite an informal tone, and a variety of content mediums work well, including images and even memes. Try out some different mediums and see what gets a good response.
Instagram is all about photos and is therefore a great platform for B2C companies. Use high-quality photos that show customers using your products. Play around with photo editing and filters to match your brand’s aesthetic and create a striking profile.
When using the platform, highlight the lifestyle that comes with your brand, rather than pushing your products. Instagram is a great place to emphasise your brand identity.
Instagram stories are a great way to further connect with your audience and begin a dialogue. Stories are made up of a series of photos and videos. They’re very interactive and a great opportunity to connect with your audience. Be creative.
Use stories to give followers an insight into your business with behind-the-scenes videos, demonstrations or employee takeovers. Use polls, follower shout outs and ask questions.
Instagram doesn’t allow hyperlinks within posts, but verified accounts or accounts with more than 10,000 followers can add links to their stories. You can also add your website and contact buttons on your profile.
Hashtags work really well for Instagram, too. Similarly to Twitter, hashtags enable users to find your posts even if they’re not following your account.
LinkedIn is fairly different from the other social media platforms in the sense that it’s much more business-focused. However, it also has many similarities.
Try to spark discussions. Ask questions. Ask for advice, tips and experiences.
Just because it’s more business-focused, doesn’t mean you should remove the personal touch. Posts or content with personal anecdotes often work really well and help followers feel a connection with your business.
LinkedIn allows targeting, so you can highly personalise your posts to suit a particular location or industry.
Success in using social media platforms requires interactions, creativity and consistency. At Flowbird, we can put together automated social campaigns, tailored to your goals. You’ll be free to concentrate on running your business, whilst we put our marketing expertise to best use.