In 1996, Bill Gates described a future where “content is king.” The billionaire business magnate envisioned an online marketplace where no brand would be too small to participate in a rapid exchange of information and ideas. Flash forward twenty-four years, and this prediction has become our reality.
Today, social media channels including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Snapchat and TikTok all make it easy for brands to instantly establish an online presence. It can be tempting for brands to dive into every social media channel available, especially during the early stages of business growth or expansion. However, in a world where content is king – less is more.
A successful social strategy depends on knowing where to concentrate your time and resources, in order to authentically connect with your target market. Oftentimes, this will mean selectively focusing on three or four key social media channels, and producing high-quality content that’s targeted and optimised accordingly.
In fact, spreading content ‘too thin’ across numerous social channels can cost brands valuable time and money, especially if your message gets lost on the audience. Here’s our cheat sheet for choosing the social media channels that will offer successful outcomes for your brand:
1. Know yourself
The first step in developing a successful social strategy is to look inwards. Is your brand B2B or B2C? Is your brand in a start-up phase, or is expansion your focus? Are your products and services tangible or intangible? The answers to these questions will shape your social media strategy, and will help you understand how to showcase your brand to its greatest advantage.
2. Find your audience
Understanding the demographics of your target audience will also help narrow the focus of your social strategy. Are your customers primarily male or female? Are they older or younger? Do they have specialist knowledge that’s relevant to consider? Focusing on the social channels where your audience are already active will save you valuable time and resources when it comes to marketing.
For example, a lifestyle company that markets to women might find that Pinterest is an essential part of its social strategy – since over 70% of Pinterest users are female. Companies largely involved with B2B sales would be wise to focus on harnessing the power of LinkedIn – which is reportedly 277% more likely to produce qualified leads, when compared with Facebook or Twitter.
Understanding the demographics of your target audience will also help narrow the focus of your social strategy. Are your customers primarily male or female? Are they older or younger?
3. Research your competitors
Understanding how your competitors are using social media is another important step in developing an effective strategy. Which social channels do your competitors currently use? What type of content do they post, and how often? Which channels seems to yield the highest levels of engagement? Think your competitor as a beta tester, and use their learnings to your benefit.
4. Leverage key influencers
Who are the key influencers or thought leaders in your field, and where are they found on social? Leveraging from key influencers is an effective way to build a highly engaged social media audience for your own brand. The types of content that influencers produce may also offer you some insights and inspiration for your own channels.
5. Focus on alignment
Every social media channel represents a touchpoint for your brand, so it’s important that your content development is consistently aligned. Building brand integrity and loyalty depends on presenting the same brand voice with a distinctive look and feel, every time.
Bonus tip: Use aligned social channels to achieve multiple CTAs (calls to action.) Do you want the audience to join your mailing list? Are you incentivising them to take up an offer? Maintaining fewer social channels that are expertly executed will ensure you never leave your audience at a dead end.
“It’s better to do one thing well than ten things poorly.” ― Heather Hart.
The same applies for social media marketing. If you need help refining your social strategy and priming it for success, contact the team at Pixel Palace today!