Social media marketing, or SMM, is a marketing strategy that takes implements social networking sites like Facebook and Twi tter in order to achieve marketing and branding goals. Companies create content, images, and video that encourages viewers to share or like it on their social networks.
This tactic is driven by word-of-mouth marketing, or unpaid promotion, in which satisfied viewers tell other people how much they like you.
Word-of-mouth marketing is a cheaper and more efficient alternative to paid media because it involves the element of peer review. 86 percent of consumers read reviews before making purchasing decisions, and 90 percent of them say they trust these reviews. That means that hearing how great you are is more effective when it comes from your viewers rather than you. Plus, when viewers share your content, they share it with their friends, who are even more likely to trust them than if they read a stranger’s review.
The first step in starting your SMM campaign? Set your goals. Here are the four ways you can use social media to have a big impact on your business.
1. Disseminate your message. SMM is a great way to show customers and prospects who you are and what you can offer them. More importantly, it tells your story on the platforms where people spend most of their time. It’s a great (and free!) technique for brand awareness.
2. Drive sales. You can use social media to provide special offers and discounts that are so good, viewers will share them with their friends. Your promotions can quickly go viral, increasing how many people see them and how many people take advantage of them. It’s a quick and easy way to increase sales.
3. Provide excellent customer Service. People aren’t scared to say how they feel about your product or service, especially online. This is a double-edged sword: positive reviews will be there for everyone to see, but so will negative ones. You can negate this by quickly responding to negative feedback in a positive manner so people will see that you care about providing great customer service.
4. Establish relationships. Social media is a great way to develop and maintain a deep relationship with your customers so they’ll get to know you, trust you, and share you with their friends.
Social networks are about establishing your personality and keeping your friends updated on what’s going on in your life. It’s the same for businesses. Your profile pages should relay the latest things going on with your company, while also incorporating your brand personality and voice. Make good use of your logo, slogan, color scheme, history, employee bios, pictures and any other elements that identify who you are and what you do. Make sure this personality is consistently portrayed across all platforms used.
A hashtag is a word or phrase preceded by the pound (#) sign. Hashtags are used on social media sites to generate exposure for brands, topics or products. Many people use hashtags as a creative and trendy way to promote the things they care about. When you incorporate hashtags that are relevant to your posts, you join real-time conversations happening around those topics.
You can strategically use hashtags for branding in the following ways:
1. Hashtags allow companies to expand the number of people who are exposed to their messages.
2. Hashtags can amplify brands by providing an easy way for people to share information about them.
3. Hashtags allow businesses to easily and freely promote specials and events.
Facebook and Twitter aren’t the only social platforms out there. Blogs are also a great way to share a message in a more casual environment.
You don’t have to be a published author to be a good blogger. In fact, you just have to be a good conversationalist. Blogging is a critical component of SMM because it’s an outlet for businesses to provide fresh, relevant content in a conversational way. Incorporating a blog as part of your Internet marketing strategy also provides your company a good opportunity to rank highly in search engine rankings.
Using SMM is a great, cheap way to take your marketing strategy to the next level. It can help you spread the word about your brand, drive sales, provide customer service and establish relationships with your customers. With great content, proper use of hashtags, and the incorporation of a blog, you can take your branding to the next level and achieve all of your marketing goals.