For any business to thrive, whether a startup or a multinational organization, an effective marketing strategy is absolutely critical. This serves as a crucial road map for the entire business. It is clear that social media is gradually becoming the backbone for effective marketing because of the number of social media users and the integral role it plays in modern life. The effect of social media on businesses nowadays is massive in a way which no one would have predicted when these platforms were first launched. Now it is core to every company’s business growth, and the way they build and interact with their customer base. With billions of people connected on various platforms, social media provides endless opportunities for brands and businesses to market their products or services.
It has been proven that one of the most effective forms of marketing is word-of-mouth. When a customer is happy about a product, they find it easy to share their experience with friends, family, colleagues, fans, followers and everyone they are connected to. That’s the beauty of social media for businesses: it provides them with direct access to their customers and potential customers. Also, social media personalizes your brand and helps to spread your message in a relaxed and conversational way.
How Social Media Supports Other Marketing Strategies
In 2019, just about all businesses, whether a local SME, digital startup, or global brand, knows the importance of social media. 90% of millennials and 77.5% of Gen X-ers are active social media users, making this an incredible tool to reach customers.
An effective social media strategy can let you build awareness for your brand, and reach new audiences that you are unlikely to touch through other forms of advertising. It can also help you to build strong relationships with your customer base, developing loyalty and promoting a strong brand image. More and more businesses are discovering the strong results which follow from social media: more sales, more new and return customers, more profits and therefore stronger growth.
Social media is not only a strong marketing strategy in and of itself, it also supports and assists other marketing tactics and will thus help you achieve broader results.
Here are some of the ways social media supports and promotes other marketing efforts:
- Social media exposes you to the latest trends, allowing you to adopt these in broader marketing tactics.
- It builds your brand so that other PR and marketing activities are more likely to resonate with your target audience.
- It helps in build a strong customer database which you can leverage with other marketing strategies such as email marketing
- It drives sales and ultimately business growth.
In order to get the most out of your social media, as well as to build the most effective marketing strategy to promote your business and drive sales, profits, and growth, you need to make sure that your social media plays the right role in your overall marketing.
How To Develop A Marketing Strategy Which Makes Social Media Work For You
Understand The Piece In The Puzzle
The first thing you will need to do is understand how social media fits into your overall marketing efforts. To start, this means you will need to have a good overview of your entire marketing strategy. If you don’t have one already, it is essential that you develop a formal, documented strategy of how you plan to market your business.
Once you have a clear picture of your marketing strategy, develop your social media strategy. It is critical to do this in that order: some businesses jump into social media, posting and sharing without having a clear idea of what they are doing and why. Alternatively, they may have a set strategy for social media but keep this separate from marketing efforts, rather than treating all efforts as part of the same strategy working toward the same goals.
It is equally important to be disciplined in following this strategy, and making sure all social media activities fit within the plan and work toward your goals. Perhaps due to the casual nature of social
media, businesses can sometimes fall into an ad-hoc approach to social media tactics rather than a disciplined goal-focused one.
Find Your Target Audience
Every business that wants to grow its customer base knows that it needs a community of people to do so. This is what social media offers. As of 2019, 3.2 billion people use social media on a daily basis: that’s nearly half of the world’s population. Whatever product you sell, you can be confident that a good number of the 3.5 billion people on social media will be interested. There are several social media advertising tools that help businesses to target specific customers who have an interest in their product or services. One of the best ways to find the perfect audience for your business is through a strong content marketing strategy. SEO content marketing helps you feed your target audience the exact information they need at the same time as building brand awareness and developing relationships with your customers.
Even though its existing population is already massive, social media simply keeps growing. Social media has drastically reduced the time it takes to disseminate information and for users to respond. It magnifies everything a brand does or says; that’s why organizations and companies cannot afford to make a single wrong move. Over the past few years, platforms like Pinterest, Tumblr and Instagram have grown in popularity, providing businesses with different creative options that allow them to produce engaging content and build their audiences. Social media is a great tool to foster and maintain customer relationships. The personal nature of communicating through social media means businesses can build trust with their customers, establish credibility, and in turn build their customer base. This creates not only customer loyalty but also more repeat business, a win for any company.
Strong Online Presence
Social media has become an integral part of people’s daily lives, so much so that it is now almost impossible to separate people from their social media. From uploading pictures of a nice meal to ranting about poor service they’ve received, people now find it easy to discuss everything about their lives online. Businesses, whether small, medium or large must maximize this and establish their online presence on those platforms. Nowadays, nothing influences people’s purchasing decision more than social media. When a consumer is interested in a product, they go to social media to see comments and reviews from others. If they don’t find anything about the product on social media, they will probably assume that something is wrong with it. Therefore if your business is not on social media, you may soon go out of business.
Keeping up with competitors is important for any business to stay afloat. Just about every business, from established companies to brand new enterprises, is adopting the use of social media, and they are capitalizing on the many benefits that come with it. You and your competitors have the same target market, so it is important to know what they are doing to entice people into buying their product, and use this knowledge to do it better. With the number of digital marketing your competitors may be implementing on a daily basis, you have to keep informed in order to boost your online traffic, and in the long run drive more sales. This is the key to competitive advantage marketing that helps you tailor your campaign to your target audience.
By developing strong and well-planned social media tactics which fit within and support your broader marketing strategy, you will see exponential progress in terms of building your brand, strengthening your customer base and growing your business.