If you think you need a Ph.D. to navigate the wide world of social media and understand how to use it to build your business, you’re not alone! There are endless social channels, some disappearing as fast as others appear (anyone remember Yik Yak?) and even more endless ways to use them. This means that if you’re not an active social media user, it can be a real challenge figuring out where to go for your target audience and how to, er, target them.
As social media managers, and marketers, we can offer a bit of helpful advice: the best first-step forward is to start small and build out from there. It’s far better to have one or two active social media pages that you put time and energy into nurturing, rather than having five social accounts that are laying dormant from lack of resources.
To keep our focus modest we’re going to tackle two social media platforms: Instagram and Facebook. Below are our favourite features of each because they give our clients flexibility, visibility and effective opportunities for marketing that make the most of everyone’s time and budget.
Instagram Marketing Tips
1. Switching to a Business Account
For many small business owners, sharing business posts might be a natural and organic extension of your personal Instagram account, but to get data and insight that will enhance your marketing efforts it’s best to switch to a business account. The great news is that you don’t have to start from scratch!
2. Stories & Highlights on Instagram
You can use Instagram Stories to temporarily post unique content that reflects your brand’s personality, offers behind-the-scenes photos or videos, and gives customers a more intimate platform to get to know you. This isn’t small potatoes. Followers will appreciate your insider posts, and will respond through engagement, which will enhance your relationship with customers. Take it to the next level and add Stories Highlights to your page.
3. Utilizing Free Insights
Now that you’re using your new Instagram business account, you’ll be able to track your audience’s behaviour with Instagram’s free marketing tools. There’s a handy app for smartphones as well, so you can check in on demographics, age, locations and ad performances to better tweak your digital promotions and initiatives.
4. Sponsored Posts
Easily turn your Instagram posts into sponsored posts and reach a larger target audience that may not yet know about you or be following your business page. All it takes is one great post to get attention and by choosing posts that have been well received by your existing followers, your chances for attracting new followers become even greater!
5. Create your own hashtag
Most of us know about hashtags and their function by now, but have you considered creating your own branded hashtag, and developing its visibility on Instagram? Come up with your own catchy # for broader reach, customer interaction, engagement and brand visibility. Using it regularly will encourage your followers to do the same and soon just by clicking the hashtag itself, users can find a vault of info about you and your company.
Facebook Marketing Tips
6. Business Page Call-to-Action
When you’re setting up a business page for Facebook be sure to add a call-to-action button. This gives people the opportunity to easily reach out, whether you’re directing them to booking info, products for sale, or a contact number to reach you for a consultation.
7. Live Video
Facebook Live is a real-time opportunity to engage and interact with your page followers. Whether you’re onsite at an event or hosting a special function at the office, live videos on Facebook are a great way to engage with your audience “in the moment” and share the great stuff you’re doing and involved in as a brand.
For feedback, or to test new product ideas with your target audience, polls are an excellent way to build trust with your brand and encourage engagement with your target audience. Facebook has built-in functionality that allows you to customize your own poll that is unique to your research and development needs.
Not surprisingly, Facebook Stories is almost identical to Instagram Stories. Videos show up on your page temporarily, and offer a great opportunity to share insider tips, show your company behind-the-scenes or get personal with your audience for an interactive Q&A.
10. Pinned Posts
Any post you create on Facebook can be “pinned” to the top of the page, which means that it will be the first post visitors see when they scroll your business feed. By manually pinning your popular posts or posts that have received the most interaction you can attract new visitors and further engagement from new followers. You can also use this functionality to highlight special promos or upcoming events so they don’t get lost in the mix.
Need More Than Just Marketing Tips?
If these social media marketing tips aren’t enough, and you have questions about how to use a platform and what initiatives can be implemented to help you make the most of your online presence, let us know.
As a full-service digital marketing company, we offer consultation services for clients who are looking to develop their social media marketing strategies. Let’s connect!