What is social media?
We dare say that there is probably a pretty high probability that you know what social media is. But let's take that short: Social media - often abbreviated as SoMe - are online platforms that connect people. On these platforms, people have the ability to share content with each other quickly and efficiently — and in real-time. Thus, each platform enables users to interact with each other and each other's content within the framework set up by the platform. In general, social media is divided into 8 different categories:
Platforms for communication between people and businesses – e.g. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn
Platforms for sharing e.g. photos, video production, live video. And much more — such as Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube
Platforms for sharing and storing content — such as Pinterest.
Platforms for sharing common interests and hobbies – for example, Goodreads.
Platforms for the exchange of ideas and opinions – e.g. Reddit and Quora.
Blogging and publishing:
Platforms for publishing posts and articles online — for example, Tumblr and WordPress.
Business, product, and service review platforms — such as Tripadvisor and Trustpilot.
Platforms for online shopping and exchange of goods, as well as the purchase and sale of second-hand goods – for example, the purchase and sale of used goods through Etsy In recent years, social media has increasingly become many companies' preferred channels for content marketing – and there are many reasons for this.
Assemble the perfect social media strategy with COPUS
At COPUS, we help you in both laying out a strategy for your social media and producing catchy and relevant content across all channels. Contact us and hear more about how we can help you.
Why should SoMe be part of your brand strategy?
There are several good reasons why it's a good idea to include social media in your brand strategy.
Your target audience can be found on social media
As many as 86% of people use social media – and we use them significantly more often than we read news or articles online. At the same time, our use of traditional media is steadily decreasing – e.g. TV, newspapers and magazines. If you want to reach your target audience, social media is not only your best bet but rather a prerequisite.
Social media not only allows you to reach your target audience but also to connect directly and personally with customers through community management. This means that your communication and marketing can be adapted to the individual – and it creates security for the customer and strengthens their relationship with your company.
By extension, SoMe also allows you to hit your target audience more accurately. On the vast majority of social media, you can specify which users you want to hit with your messages. You can segment your audience on parameters such as geography, age, gender, interests, and behavior, thus avoiding wasting resources on mass exposure to people who aren't interested in your messages.
Social media marketing is easier, cheaper and gives you more control
Social media marketing offers the ability to create campaigns, which are much easier to handle than traditional advertising campaigns. A traditional campaign involving TV, newspapers, magazines, etc. typically takes 2-3 months to plan and implement. A traditional advertising campaign can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. And once the campaign is implemented, there can be no change in either setup or messages.
However, if you choose to run the campaign on social media, it typically only takes 4-5 hours to create a campaign with 5-6 different posts and share them on the respective media. It costs only a fraction of a traditional campaign. And it's only a few hours before you can get an insight into the results of how the campaign is doing.
If the first posts don't perform well enough, you can make changes before you share the next ones. And if the campaign doesn't produce the results you want, you can just close it again by deleting the posts. So you save time, resources and have much more control over how the campaign is doing.
Five steps to a strong SoMe strategy
As with PR, for example, it takes a strong strategy to achieve success with content marketing on social media. Below are five steps to build a strong SoMe strategy.
1. Set goals and find your target audience
One of the first things you need to do is set up a concrete goal with your social media efforts. Here, consider what you'd like to achieve with your SoMe strategy. For example, do you want to:
- Drive traffic to your website?
- Have more followers on social media?
- Have more reactions to your content?
Once you've found your goal, you must identify your target audience — for example, by creating personas based on your average customers. Once you know your target audience, you're ready to continue working on your social media strategy.
2. Choose your SoMe channels
Once you've found your target audience, choose which social media channels your content marketing should be on. Your SoMe platforms must be selected accordingly to where your target audience is located and what that platform is typically used for. The three most frequently used channels are:
- Facebook: The platform with the largest social network. Both B2B and B2C companies use Facebook as a marketing channel. Content for Facebook is typically in the form of photos, text, or videos
- Instagram: One of the most used social media. Instagram is particularly suitable for B2C companies whose customers are primarily private consumers. Instagram is a visual platform, and content for this is therefore typically pictures and videos with short text descriptions
- LinkedIn: A large professional network for networking and sharing knowledge and experience with companies and other industry professionals. LinkedIn is, therefore, suitable for B2B companies. The typical content formats for LinkedIn are longer text posts or inspirational videos
3. Quality vs. quantity – how often should you post on social media?
Once you've selected your channel, decide how often to post. You probably don't have unlimited time and resources available to produce content, which is why you need to address the issue of quality vs. quantity.
When it comes to social media, both quality and quantity are important. The more content you produce, the more options you have to appear in search results. However, if your content is bad or doesn't match your brand, your target audience's perception of the brand will be compromised and visitors will quickly leave your website or business profile again.
That's why quality is important. Google rewards good content – and good content will attract more visitors and potential customers at the same time. In return, you will miss out on exposure if you do not take quantity into account at all.
Therefore, try to find a middle ground where you post regularly, but only post content that creates value and fits into your brand narrative.
4. Post the right content
In other words, it's important that the content you choose to post is tailored to your goals, your audience, and the platform on which the content should be posted. Therefore, consider whether you are posting:
- Traffic-creating content: Content to generate traffic to your website — such as blog posts with a link to the page
- Engaging content: Content that engages the audience and makes them want to interact with the post — for example, suggesting that users answer a question or share their opinion on something in the comments section
- Everyday content: Content that entertains through small everyday stories while keeping users updated on relevant news and upcoming events
All three types of content can be used on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn – it's just about customising the content to your channel and audience. Try to experiment and adjust accordingly to your users' reactions to your content.
5. Create a publishing plan
Last but not least, your social media strategy must include a publishing plan. That way, you can keep track and you avoid sitting at the last minute and making up what to post.
Here you may want to use a calendar or Google Spreadsheets or Excel, where you can create a table of items such as:
- Date for publishing
- Notes and/or picture text
There are also a lot of online tools to help you plan and post across channels.
It may also be an advantage to include in the plan what resources you want to use for different campaigns – e.g. influencer marketing. And if you're more about posting on social media, it's a good idea to mention next to each post who's going to be in charge of publishing.