Social media can be a big driver of sales and brand awareness goals, or it can be a stale and stagnant place that offers little benefit to your business. In an ever-changing digital environment, with ever-changing user behaviours, it's important to keep a fresh perspective on social platforms if you intend for them to be part of your marketing. It’s easy to get stuck in a social media rut, so here are our top three tips for improving engagement, follower experience and eventual business goals.

Be patient, be helpful

Social media is an immediate, free and easy way to communicate directly to your customer, so it can feel like the perfect place to spruik your sales and brand messages. However, the more eager brands and businesses are to shout their jargon from the platform’s rooftop, it can be a hindrance to the end goal: communication that is genuinely absorbed by the audience. Social media, although a seemingly quick consumption of information, should be viewed by businesses as a slow burn game if you’re looking for tangible results. Even if your goal is brand awareness, being patient and paced with your choice of post is key. 

The majority of your messaging should be helpful to your audience, even if the information is coming from another source. With each post that authentically helps your customer and future customers, you are building invaluable trust that will eventually translate in your bottom line. 

Of course, social media is a great place to promote your sales and services, but it should be well paced, and well placed. Keep your stagnant posts (the ones that appear on regular feeds) for information that will keep your followers interested and impressed, and use your temporary posts (such as Facebook and Instagram stories) for promotional material. 

Reignite your creativity every month

What was creative one day is tired fodder the next, especially on social media. Memes that were once funny and viral, barely warrant a pause in scrolling now. The way you present your messaging is as important (even more so) than what your messaging is. In fact, you can (and sometimes should) keep your core messaging the same, and simply adjust your creative sails in how your followers absorb it. For example, play with video, carousels, polls and galleries (some of which are able to be created on the platforms themselves), bringing life to your posts in really simple ways. 

Also, venture into new social platforms you may not have thought of. Don’t immediately sell your scope short based on assumed demographics. For example, although TikTok was initially pitted as a very young audience, it has shifted to include (and, depending on who you’re talking to, taken over by) older demographics looking for fresh content to see and create. Even if your first impression is that it doesn’t suit your branding, spend time adjusting assumptions and tap into ideas about how you can integrate who you are on new platforms.

Test, test, test. Then test again.

You don’t know what works until you try it. And then try it again at a different time. And again with new imagery. And again with a tweak to the messaging. Coming to the socials table with a preconceived idea of what will and won’t work without having first tested it is doing a huge disservice to the potential of social media to your business. 

Organic testing can be done with stagnant posts and temporary ones, and are easily measured by your area of interest in each post: engagement and click through rates are all visible on most social platform data. Don’t just test the types of posts you do, but the time of day you do them and the messaging around them. Give yourself at least three months to read your crowd and then move forward with a strategy accordingly

Paid testing, particularly on Facebook, is conveniently laid out for you in the form of dynamic creative ads. This is where Facebook has a paid system of dispersing several messages against varying imagery and calls to action to send out in multiple combinations to find the combinations that appealed most. It’s a great way to not only work on the ads you’re sending out, but to also aid in the overall way you’re reaching out to your followers in all areas of social media. 

If you need more assistance with boosting the success of your business’s social media activity, talk to us today about how we can use data and our expertise to create a strategy for real and tangible results

Written By

Rikki Hodge-Smith

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