As more small businesses rise to the challenge of creating customer-centric experiences, integrated marketers are finding that the social media strategies and tactics of yesterday are becoming obsolete. New social media platforms are introduced with greater frequency, audiences’ content consumption continues to rise, and the ways that businesses interact with their audiences will need to adapt.
In a world where 98% of brands continue to use social media as a bullhorn and not a magnet, broadcasting information instead of generating interest through relevant messaging, small businesses need to work harder to provide a customer-focused strategy through the medium. MarketingLand has laid out four tips for integrated marketers who want to take their social media to the next level for effective customer engagement.
- Listening Isn’t Enough
Social Media listening is critical for businesses of all size, not just the big guys. Listening is how your small business gathers intelligence for improving service and taking action. The next step is taking that customer data and extrapolating insights to begin a two-way conversation that will help you and your team take appropriate action to meet the needs of your audience.
- Simplify Your Audience Engagement
Going from listening to action can feel like some heavy-lifting. Fortunately, the industry is rife with social media management tools that can help you simplify the process. The goal is of course to have your audience like, share, and view your content. Social media should also be a place where they can interact with your organization, asking questions or giving feedback. After all, an engaged audience is an audience who knows, likes and trusts you – and will share that trust with their network.
- Strive for Right Content, Right Audience, Right Time
To really reach and engage with your audience, you must know who they are, what they want from you, and when and where to reach them. You can build customer personas using demographic data, psychographic data, surveys, social media listening, or available social platform data. Whichever method works best for you, you will need to learn to ask the right questions to discover what your audience needs and how you can meet those needs.
- Bring Together People, Process & Technology
As important as social media technology is, it is only as good as the individual or team that is making it work for your business. After all no (wo)man—or app—is an island; without people and a plan, you will never successfully execute your social strategy. Your team (or you) must be up-to-date on industry trends, be agile enough to change with the technology, and understand how to connect with your audience. And remember, everyone needs a little of that human touch.
When reporting shows that 89% of 18-29-year-olds are active on social media, and 78% of companies have dedicated social media teams, your organization cannot afford to hang back and stick with the status quo. An integrated marketer’s mandate is to bring in new customers, serve existing customers, and build customer loyalty. It is therefore essential to remember and implement these four steps for a standout social media experience.
Last modified: October 9, 2017