Social media is an important tool for growing your business, no matter what industry you are in. It can help you reach current and potential customers, increase awareness about your brand, and boost your sales and revenue. And with social media usage in the United States significantly increasing due to the pandemic, now is the time to use it to your business's advantage.
Here are some ideas to try to reach your target customers and build a strong following on social media.
1. Partner with social media micro-influencers
One of the best ways to increase your social media presence is to get the support of users who are already established on social media, such as micro-influencers. Micro-influencers are individuals who have around 10,000 to 50,000 social media followers and high rates of audience engagement. You may find them in your own community or niche market. Your influencer may even be a loyal customer who would be more than happy to promote your brand.
2. Use social media management solutions
It’s important to connect with your audience regularly on social media, but this doesn’t mean you should be spending the entire day posting.
Social media management tools, such as Sprinklr, HubSpot, and Hootsuite, can help you plan and schedule content on all of your social media accounts. These solutions can also help you divide tasks within your social media team and analyze your posts’ performance.
3. Experiment on ideal posting times
It’s important to know when to post on social media as it allows your business to become more visible to your target audience. A study by Hootsuite shows the best times to post on popular social media platforms, but these can be broad and unsuitable for some industries.
To identify the best posting times for your business, it helps to do A/B testing. Schedule a post for one time slot and measure its performance. Then, repeat the process using a different time slot. See which periods earn the most traffic and engagement, then adjust your posting schedules accordingly. Remember to factor in holidays and other major events, as these can change your audience’s social media habits.
4. Make use of chatbots
Consumers value convenience when it comes to customer service, which is why many of them appreciate companies that provide customer support through social media. In fact, a study by Conversocial found that 54% of consumers prefer using social media for customer service over phone or email.
It can be difficult, however, to always have a live person available to answer your customers’ inquiries. This is where chatbots can help. You can program them on platforms like Facebook and Twitter to answer frequently asked questions. So even if your business is closed for the day, your customers can still get the answers they need.
54% of consumers prefer using social media for customer service over phone or email.
5. Take advantage of Stories
Stories is a feature on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok that allows your business to post photos, videos, or status updates that are visible for only 24 hours. It’s a fun way to interact with your audience better, gather feedback, and promote your business.
Make it a goal to post a story on your social media accounts at least once per day. You could also post quizzes, polls, countdowns, and other interactive elements to engage your audience and learn more about them. Remember not to post too many stories per day, as this can be disruptive to some of your target audience and may cause them to unfollow you.
6. Use hashtags
Hashtags are words or phrases preceded by the hash sign (#) used to identify a specific topic or marketing campaign on Twitter and Instagram. For instance, a hashtag like #Olympics on a post indicates that the content is related to the international sports event.
Hashtags can be a powerful way to increase your reach and engagement on social media if used correctly. Here are some best practices to try:
- Make sure that your hashtags are easy to spell and remember, as typographical errors can make your posts difficult to discover.
- Give your audience a reason to use your hashtags, such as a prize or an acknowledgement. This not only motivates them, but it also helps boost your brand’s reach.
- Use tools like Hashtagify and RiteTag to discover the hashtags people are using when talking about your company or industry.
- Use 7 to 30 hashtags. According to a study, posts with these many hashtags have the most engagement.
- Include hashtags that are relevant to your business and industry in your post. Having relevant hashtags increases the likelihood that your audience will see your posts.
- Vary your hashtags to see which ones garner the most engagement.
7. Start a conversation
For businesses, the most important goal of using social media is to drive engagement. To achieve this, it’s not enough to stick to informational posts. Instead, think of a way you can turn your posts into a discussion. For example, you could create a poll on Facebook about what's most important to customers when it comes to online shopping. Encouraging your audience to share their ideas and opinions may help your posts record high rates of engagement in no time.
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