According to a recent report, 54% of internet users rely on social media when researching a product or service. Given its ubiquity in 21st-century life, social media platforms have become a key source of lead generation, brand awareness and a significant source of sales.
But what is social media marketing? And how can a social media marketing campaign be implemented for optimum results?
Read on for our essential guide to social media marketing best practices in 2021.
What Is Social Media Marketing?
First, let’s take a look at what social media marketing is, and how small businesses can use it to promote their business.
Social media marketing refers to the use of an ever-expanding range of digital networking platforms used to communicate with existing and potential customers. Such platforms include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and many more.
Depending on organizational goals, social media marketing can consist of both paid and organic campaigns or work in isolation of one another. At VujaDay we recommend combining paid and organic as they operate symbiotically; however, we recognize that most small businesses have a limited marketing budget.
On one hand, organic social media marketing is free. Platforms do not charge businesses to post images, text, or videos from their accounts to their followers. However, this means only internet users who follow a brand will view their organic social media posts. Furthermore, each social media outlet has its own algorithm in place to limit organic results so that they can force you to pay for ads for expanded reach.
Meanwhile, paid social media marketing can be seen as a more traditional form of advertising. It consists of paying to place content in front of users who might have never previously heard of that business. Paid social media marketing strategies are essential for businesses that do not have a large social media following.
Social media marketing has become increasingly important since the coronavirus pandemic while traditional forms of print advertising have become less and less visible.
With people spending more time than ever before online, now is the perfect opportunity for small businesses to increase their visibility via social media platforms.
How to Create a Social Media Marketing Campaign?
Creating a social media marketing strategy will likely seem daunting to those with little previous experience. The first question a small business owner must ask is:
What is the profile of my target customer?
Depending on the age range, consumer habits, and product being advertised, the right social media networks to choose for a campaign will vary from business to business. TikTok boasts the youngest average user. However, Facebook is a common choice for many businesses due to the wide age range of its users and broad reach across society.
The next question to consider is the objectives of a business.
Are this year’s objectives and key results (OKRs) directed towards increasing brand awareness? Or is re-engaging existing customers a priority?
Social media platforms can assist throughout the different stages of the marketing funnel. A key aspect of implementing a social media marketing campaign is selecting the audience that will view the ads (in the case of paid campaigns).
Audience targeting allows businesses to direct their social media posts to specific segments of the network’s user base. Let’s take Facebook as an example of this.
If a business is hoping to source new potential customers according to the traits of an existing customer list, they could use Facebook’s lookalike audience tool to target users with similar demographics and interests to their current clients.
What Are the Benefits of Social Media Marketing?
Social media marketing assists small businesses regardless of their goals. The core benefit of establishing a presence on social media is allowing for engagement with customers and potential customers.
Let’s take a look at a few of the ways marketing via social media can achieve different business objectives.
First, paid advertising creates brand awareness. Furthermore, a paid strategy also introduces businesses to users who will likely be interested in the brand.
Collaborating with influencers is another method for achieving this.
Second, lookalike campaigns on Facebook are a great resource for B2C businesses looking to generate new leads. Meanwhile, LinkedIn provides excellent opportunities for B2B companies.
Lastly, social media campaigns can lead directly to increased revenue, as links from posts can take the user directly to product pages. In this way, social media campaigns are effective throughout both marketing and sales funnels.
Top Social Media Marketing Best Practices
Finally, let’s take a look at some of the best social media marketing practices to incorporate into a campaign.
One of the most important aspects of a social media marketing campaign is the audience.
Businesses should have a clear idea of who they want to see their paid ads. Which social media platforms do their target customers use? What are their interests, incomes, and what stage of life are they in?
Next, group the campaign into ad-sets, and offer different ads within these groupings. Overall organizational goals should be firmly integrated into the wording, images, and calls to action (CTAs) included in the social media posts.
Another essential campaign best practice is to continually review and test the strategy. Examine which adverts perform better through A/B testing, and audit the campaign regularly. Use key metrics such as the click-through rate (CTR), social share of reach, and applause rate to find out how a campaign is performing.
Our final tip is to take time to establish branding. The tone of voice, color scheme, emoji use, and hashtags should be consistent across a business’s social media profiles and website.
Reap the Benefits of an Effective Social Media Marketing Campaign
We’ve now introduced the crucial elements of a social media campaign. It’s time to start reaching and engaging with a huge source of potential customers. It’s necessary to bear these social media marketing best practices in mind, as well as to stay up to date with the latest digital marketing trends.
If you’d like assistance in developing your social media marketing campaign from our team of experts at VujaDay, get in touch here.