Tag Archive: social

  1. Which Social Media Channel Is Right for My Business?

    Social Media

    In this day and age, you’ll be hard pressed to find a brand that doesn’t have a presence on social media. If you’re a brand that’s just starting out or a veteran in your marketplace looking to expand into a new platform, you may be asking yourself: Which channels should I be focusing on?

    Ask many people and I guarantee the answer will be; “As many of them as possible.”

    This, however, is quite often not the case. Social media success is not marked by having your brand on every single platform, nor by haphazardly posting in order to simply fill a newsfeed. Quality is better than quantity, no matter if you are talking about the content you are producing, the time you are spending on each platform, or the number of platforms your brand is active on.

     

    When trying to figure out where you should be spending your time, try to answer these three questions:

     

    1. Where are your target personas spending their time?
    2. Where does your message resonate the most?
    3. Can you create relevant content that broadcasts your message efficiently and accurately?

    A financial firm that primarily focuses on B2B marketing would probably see a higher return on their time by writing informational articles and engaging with industry professionals on platforms like LinkedIn or Twitter than it would be trying to build an Instagram presence. Why? Instagram is primarily a photo and video-based social media channel, and a financial firm may not naturally lend itself to sharing visually interesting content. Meanwhile, an architectural firm could realistically provide industry insight and project updates on Linkedin and Twitter while also curating an Instagram feed that appeals to an audience who admires the elements of design so prevalent in that field.

    Finding the right social media platform for your brand is dependant upon the needs of your business and your ability to provide content. Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t worry. Below, I have highlighted the best uses of each of the leading social media platforms.

     

    Facebook

    Facebook has had a tumultuous year but it still remains the most prolific and influential social media network. According to Hootsuite, 1.47 billion people are daily active users and there are 80 million small to medium-sized business pages. With that being said should you have a Facebook page? Short answer: Yes.

    But should you expect it to be a successful way for you to market your business? Well, that depends on how you use it.

    With Facebook’s pivot toward their “Groups” functionality and the importance, it places on “meaningful conversations,” you might find it hard to reach your audience members through all the noise if you don’t engage in paid advertising and boosted posts on the platform. That being said, if you are a business that hosts a lot of community events, relies on community feedback, or you are trying to sell a product directly to consumers, Facebook’s reviews, events, and Shopify integration functionalities are second to none among other social networks.

    Twitter

    As reported by Hootsuite, 75% of B2B and 65% of B2C businesses market on Twitter, and 85% of small to medium-sized businesses believe that Twitter is an integral tool for providing customer service. But with the average half-life of a single tweet being just 24 minutes, how does one ensure that their brand’s message is being communicated effectively through the platform?

    The hard truth is, unless you are devoting a significant amount of time engaging with others and consistently tweeting on the platform you very well might just be screaming into the void. The crux of a great Twitter presence is not necessarily using it as a megaphone to amplify your message but more like a two-way radio to interact with your customers, your community, or like-minded businesses.

    Instagram

    With over one billion monthly active users and 70% of US businesses utilizing the platform, Instagram is the third most widely used social media platform in the world, according to Oberlo. As I explained earlier, if you do not have the visual assets (photography and video), this platform might not be for you. Instagram users want a visual and artistic representation of your brand. This requires a constant flow of new and exciting photo and video content for users to engage with.

    If you can swing it, I suggest utilizing a healthy mix of user-generated content to encourage tagging and engagement, professional photography that really tells the story of your brand, and candid “of-the-moment” shots that give your brand authenticity.

    Over the past few years, Instagram has made it easier for business to see direct ROI from utilizing their platform. From integration into Facebook’s Ad manager, swipe up to link out features on Instagram stories (for accounts with over 10k followers) and direct shopping on Instagram for approved business, there are many opportunities to utilize this platform to benefit your business.  

    LinkedIn

    If you’re a B2B marketer, LinkedIn is definitely the place for you. According to Foundation Inc., 80% of all social media generated social media leads come from LinkedIn. But like any platform, it’s all about what you post. LinkedIn presents the unique opportunity to position your brand as a thought leader in your industry through posting LinkedIn Articles and thoughtful company updates. But more than that, the platform also allows your employees and executives to leverage their own LinkedIn presence to further bolster your brand’s credibility.

    Deciding where you should spend your time and money on social media is always daunting. However, as long as you set clear goals, understand your audience, and know the best uses of each platform, you’ll be growing your audience and influence in no time. But remember the key principle to social media success: Quality is always better than quantity.

  2. It’s About Time: The Perfect Time to Post on Social Media

    If you’re a business owner, you probably recognize how important a social media presence is and may already be using social media to market your business. But why do some posts seem to work better than others? Why do some posts bring in lots of business, site traffic, sales, interaction, all of the above – while other posts just go flat? While content may still be king, it’s timing that is at war for the throne. Want to be social media royalty? Follow these tips for the perfect time to post on social media!

    Tip 1: Get the Day Right!

    When it comes to posting for your business on social media, not every day has the same rules. You could be posting the sale of the century, but if you’re not conscious about when you post, few people may even see it. For Facebook the highest day for likes, shares and comments is Wednesday. If you’re looking for retweets and follows, you have more options with Twitter. Scheduling tweets for Monday – Thursday will ensure your best results each week. LinkedIn also sees better activity in the middle of the week, while visual platforms like Pinterest and Tumblr do better at the end of the week and on weekends when most Americans aren’t at work.

    Tip 2: It’s About Time!

    Early riser? Well, not all of your fans are on board, but some of them are. Posting before noon will ensure the highest activity on your Pinterest page, LinkedIn and Google+ accounts. Post as late as Midnight through 1:00AM for Pinners, while the 7:00AM through 9:00AM range is crucial for activity on LinkedIn.  9:00AM to 11:00AM is prime time for your Google circles.

    The majority of activity and engagement is on social media in the afternoon. The sweet spot for Twitter is immediately after lunch until 3:00PM. Facebook follows a similar timeframe, but will continue activity online a little later in the day until 4:00PM. LinkedIn surfaces between 2:00PM and 6:00PM, while Tumblr and Pinterest rule the night hours.

    There are also dead times on social media to avoid for posting major announcements and campaigns. For best results on Facebook, try not to post before 8:00AM or after 8:00PM. On Twitter, avoid posting before 9:00AM and after 8:00PM, as well. See a trend? Think about the times you are online or checking your phone. These timeframes are directly connected to the standard American schedule and remain true for most students, as well as those on the clock. Unless it’s breaking news, always post when your fans are listening- not just when you’re ready to talk!

    Tip 3: Know Your Audience!

    Although the above statistics should apply to most brands, businesses, and social media behavior in general, never discount what your audience behavior is already telling you. Catering your posting strategy to your specific audience will have produce exponential engagement right away, especially when national trends will fluctuate more often than your audience behavior does.

    One easy way of testing this out is through Facebook’s Insights tool. From your admin dashboard, Page Insights will provide access to valuable data. Get to know your audience better by exploring the “Posts” tab  and view valuable insight on timing your posts and content to correlate with when your fans are on Facebook  through the “When Your Fans Are Online” tab. Measuring your results is as simple as looking a little further down on this same page. Look for your organic reach, which will confirm if you are in fact getting in front of your fans, and review the data reflecting likes, comments and shares. Once you’ve found the sweet spot for maximizing eyes and action, you have gained a genuine edge over your competition, plus a more effective connection to your audience!

    Note: While Facebook’s built-in tools are helpful, it’s also a good idea to subscribe to a third party service that provides the analytics you need for each social media accounts all in once place. We recommend checking out Hootsuite, LikeAlyzer, Fanpage Karma and Must Be Present.

    Tip 4: Don’t Overdo It (Or Underdo It)!

     To truly see results from sticking to a social media schedule, be careful how often you post as well. Even if you’re posting relevant content during your popular time frames, posting too often or not enough may turn away fans and followers.

    Research suggests that brands should limit their posts on Facebook to once a day. Check out at this chart from Socialbakers showing how often some of America’s mega brands are posting to Facebook.

    They also suggest that 3 tweets a day is the magic number for Twitter. Unless your site is a media outlet posting constantly in tandem with the published content on your site, stick close to 3 tweets a day during your heaviest times of engagement. {Pro tip: the lifecycle of a tweet tends to be less than 18 minutes before it peaks, while the average post on Facebook could reach their midlife crisis at the 90 minute mark. Keep these statistics in mind for maximizing results from your social strategy.}

    It’s wise to employ a multi-faceted strategy, factoring in each individual platform and the insights from that audience, as opposed to syncing multiple accounts together. Yes, it is convenient to see a post published on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ all at once, but this form of content scheduling behavior results in churn (your fans unfollow and unlike you).

    Tip 5: Do What They Like!

    Another use for social media insights is to view which posts your audience responds to best, such as links versus images, or posts with text only. Doing more of what works and less of what doesn’t work will save time and resources, as well as increase your social activity. From adding images to including custom infographics,  there is always a way to increase post engagement. Try these cloud-based services for more visual resources: Infogr.am, Piktochart, and Canva.

    Yes, time is money; however, free, organic social marketing should be at the top of your marketing strategy. There is no better way to interact with your fans and customers or to have fans and customers interact with your business. Pay attention to what your audience says and when they’re listening and you will maximize your social media presence towards increased business results.

    Sources:

    http://socialmarketingwriting.com/category/social-media/page/4/

    http://socialtimes.com/best-worst-times-post-social-media-infographic_b141745

    http://blog.bufferapp.com/social-media-frequency-guide

    http://tracksocial.com/blog/2012/06/optimizing-facebook-engagement-part-2-how-frequently-to-post/

    http://www.socialbakers.com/blog/147-how-often-should-you-post-on-your-facebook-pages