Business development 9 January 2017

How a small business can enhance its social media marketing

Social media marketing
It is predicted that there will be 2.95bn active social media users by 2020, creating a wealth of opportunities for ambitious entrepreneurs

Writing for Business Advice, Romain Ouzeau, CEO at social media analytics platform Iconosquare, reveals the ways in which the owner of a small company can achieve better results in their?social media marketing.

Social media marketing may not be a new concept for businesses, but many still don?t know how to do it properly. With statista predicting that there will be 2.95bn social media users by 2020, it is in every business owners interest to leverage social media effectively.

According to a 2015 report by Social Media Examiner, 91 per cent of marketers want to learn the most effective social tactics and the best ways to engage their audience on social media.

But how can businesses best deliver engaging content to customers? How can a business make the most of its marketing strategy with social media analytics?

Below I examine some of the main points business owners need to consider when delivering their marketing campaigns on social media.

Instagram is on the move

Instagram is steadily emerging as a key social media platform for businesses and reached the half billion (175m?more than Twitter) user milestone in 2016. The Facebook-owned photo-sharing app attracts 600m?Instagrammers, with the last 100m joining in the last six months.

In comparison with rival Snapchat, which has 100m active users, Instagram?s popularity with high-profile celebrities and sport stars makes the platform a hotbed of activity.

With this in mind, business owners need to consider Instagram as a key part of their digital marketing strategy in order to stay ahead of the curve.

Start small and stay focused

When it comes to social media marketing, less is definitely more. The prospect of integrating social media into your marketing strategy can be daunting for business owners so it?s best to focus your efforts on just one or two social media platforms.

Begin by establishing a clear set of achievable objectives, which are both easy to measure and aligned with your overall marketing goals.

Having a clear plan in place will make it easier to determine whether or not you?re meeting expectations, so you can adapt your strategy accordingly.

Get users to do the job for you

The good thing about social media marketing, especially if your company hasn?t used it strategically before, is that you can get users to do the job for you.

To put this into perspective, according to a PwC survey in 2016, 67 per cent of us are influenced by reviews and comments on social media when we shop. Comments and reviews by our friends and peers have a huge influence over our choices.

This user generated content (UGC) is ideal for businesses needing to prove return on investment. Firstly, it doesn?t cost a penny as users share, produce and develop the content. Secondly, it?s more trusted by prospective customers as it?s content communicated by their peers. In turn, this promotes brand loyalty and customer satisfaction.

Start, measure and repeat

Social media analytics is a vital way of measuring performance so you can account for your marketing decisions. Use Google analytics to measure the click-through rate.

Having an insight into metrics like this is useful as it establishes interest, but if you were to marry this with bounce rates as well, this would determine how many users leave the website after clicking through to just one page. Using these kinds of analytics you can also track web referrals and share of traffic amongst other useful information.

There are so many different types of social media analytics tools, it?s worth shopping around.

If you can?t beat them, join them

Social media can be an effective marketing platform if used effectively and, for businesses, there is a huge opportunity to be had. Social media marketing gives brands direct and personal access to customers ? the type of access which is virtually impossible to achieve via traditional marketing channels.

According to Social Pilot, there are more than 2.5bn people with social media accounts (of which nearly 1.8bn are active) so it is clear that social media needs to be at the heart of a business?s digital marketing strategy.

Romain Ouzeau is CEO at?Iconosquare

If your business is looking to achieve better results from?its social media marketing, don’t miss these past features on Business Advice:

  1. How content marketing can turbocharge awareness of your brand
  2. Thinking about your company?s online identity
  3. Cracking SEO from the beginning to acquire customers

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