How to make social media a game changer.

iPad laying on a table with a grid of social posts on the screen.

Social media is a digital marketing necessity, plain and simple. Customers crave the intimate experience and personal connection social media offers. While every brand has social media channels, not all brands use their power to the fullest. Following are a few tips to help you capitalize on the huge potential of social media.

Think big picture

The best social media programs are just one part of a strategic, fully-integrated brand experience that includes everything from a website to public relations to advertising to SEO/SEM to CRM email programs to mobile applications and more. All of your marketing channels should work together seamlessly to help you meet your business and marketing goals. 

Whether it’s part of an ongoing social media effort or a social media campaign, content should serve what your brand is about, communicate your value and meet your customers where they are on their path to purchase. The tone of voice may differ slightly from other channels you’re using, and from one social channel to another, but the key messages and commitment to giving customers content they need, when they need it should stay the same.

Winefest's event promotion posts on Instagram.

Plan, create, connect, optimize

After defining and understanding social media’s place in your overall marketing strategy, develop a process to harness and use its power. There are five basic steps you can take to start:

  1. Understand your audience on relevant social media channels — Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and others — to determine where you need to focus your time, energy and investment.
  2. Actively listen for insights into your audience or customers’ feelings and ideas. It takes time, but can help you gain insight into what makes them tick.
  3. Plan a social media calendar with fresh, on-brand and consistent content that ladders up to your business and marketing goals. Fill your calendar with valuable content, messaging and visuals tailored to your audience, but allow calendar flexibility to take advantage of timely content opportunities that pop up.
  4. Connect with your audience by responding to your followers and others. Include calls to action inviting them to visit, like, share, comment, or enter to win to generate engagement and leads.
  5. Improve your social media efforts by continuously setting goals, analyzing, and listening. Determine the best way to expand your audience and put it into practice.
  6. BONUS! Consider investing in engagement by boosting posts and running ads on social media. Organic reach is wonderful, but can only take you as far as the algorithms will allow.

Everything we do has been affected by COVID-19, and that includes our social media strategies. Depending on the industry, things may have shifted dramatically. Generally speaking, brands are re-evaluating their imagery, streaming more live content, and pinning important posts to the top of profiles. It’s also essential to keep your audience up-to-date on company information like closings, altered business hours and changing product offerings.

Harris County's Facebook and Instagram pages.

Incorporate trends

After you get into a groove using social media fundamentals, you can start to play around with current social trends that take more time to pull off. When it comes to trends, execute quickly and execute well. The trend may disappear as quickly as it arrived. 

  • Mission-based marketing is big right now. If you can do it effectively, it can quickly connect consumers to your brand. If you want to incorporate social justice issues into your social strategy, for example, make sure the approach ties into your mission, vision, and values and is backed by action and commitment. Don’t let it be a trend you’re latching onto because it’s popular. 
  • Instagram stories and Instagram TV are excellent ways to put out additional content. Give your followers exclusive behind-the-scenes footage with stories, and longer-form entertainment with Instagram TV.
  • TikTok isn’t only for the teens. Brands can utilize the short-form video app to post assembly videos, host interactive training sessions, and highlight customers using their products in day-to-day settings. 
  • Twitch is a streaming platform that has been growing in the social media world. The largely young male gamer audience is an extremely desirable audience for some brands and running ads on the video site could be a great marketing tactic.

Diversify your tactics

Test out more diverse tactics across your social channels. For example, creating Facebook and LinkedIn groups can engage customers by offering a place for them to share thoughts on your product — and give you another venue for listening. Influencer marketing is another tactic to test out. Getting popular influencers to review and endorse your products can expand your reach and credibility tremendously. You will have less control over the message going out, but the benefits almost always outweigh the risks. 

Social media offers an incredible opportunity to connect with customers in a very personal way while working toward your brand’s business and marketing goals. By taking a more strategic, consistent and flexible approach to social media, you can make sure you seize this opportunity for your brand.


Get real

More than anything, your audiences can sniff out inauthenticity really easily. Make sure that whatever tactics you employ to make a splash on social media, they are a genuine reflection of your brand. Being real reaps huge rewards.

Want to talk more about social media strategy? Reach out to us today. 


This article was written by Andrew Gillman, Director of Public Relations at Performance Marketing


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