The basics of social media are well-established: post regularly, share helpful content and respond to followers quickly when they reach out directly.
But since these foundational activities are so well-known and widely adopted, using them alone is hardly enough for your company to stand out. If you’re serious about using social media to grow your business, it’s time to branch out with more sophisticated strategies.
Offer premium service
Data suggests that more people than ever before are treating social media profiles as customer service channels and that they expect companies to be able to respond to their queries as quickly as they would to a phone call or email.
You can get ahead of the curve by making premium customer service a standard part of your offerings. For example, why not create a private Facebook group that gives your top-paying customers direct access to you and promises fast responses to their needs? Building out such a tool can even become part of your sales process, convincing people to upsell to a higher level of service in exchange for group access.
Don’t forget, of course, that customer service and social media usage can be a two-way street. Whenever you have positive interactions with clients on any other channels, encourage them to follow you on Facebook, Twitter or your other preferred networks. Not only will doing so keep your relationship growing beyond a single transaction, it increases the odds that these satisfied customers will leave you positive ratings and reviews.
Leverage social media ad targeting data
Taking full advantage of the benefits offered by social media goes beyond customer service. You can also leverage the social media ad targeting data the networks accumulate – whether or not you plan to place paid ads.
Certainly, paid social media ads can be a great way to get your message in front of a broader, yet still targeted audience, thanks to the massive amount of demographic, behavior and interest data the platforms have on us. However, even if you don’t have a budget to back up your social campaigns, you can still mine some of this data for the benefit of your future organic social media activities.
As an example, if you begin the Facebook Ads creation process, you’ll eventually reach a screen where, in selecting your Audience placements, you’re able to select Detailed Targeting options based on user data. Clicking “Suggestions” near this field will reveal a list of interests based on your page and your following. Use the audience size figures that accompany these suggestions to plan future social posts that will be of interest to the largest possible groups of people.
Your organic social media data can be just as valuable in helping you fine-tune your overall marketing strategy. Visit the analytics resources in your social profiles frequently, using the data not just to set your social posting approach, but to inform everything from the blog posts you write about the new products you release.
Take a stand
Finally, because social media is, well, social, it’s a great place to take a stand on the issues that are important to you as a company.
Going out on a limb may seem risky; after all, while some of your followers will agree with the stand you take, others may not. However, what you’ll likely find is that followers who share your company’s position will feel a greater affinity for your brand and will be more likely to tell others about your business. Even those who don’t may be impressed by your company’s willingness to vocalize your beliefs amidst a sea of carefully-neutral competitors.
Ultimately, when it comes to social media, it’s time to think beyond posting schedules and preferred formats. If the tactics above don’t suit your company, that’s fine. Consider instead the central tenet they all share: doing whatever it takes to place the customer’s needs first.
Your followers may respond better to different social media marketing strategies than the ones described here. But if you choose your specific tactics with their needs in mind – not just whatever will be easiest for you to implement – you’ll find that your social channels can become powerful drivers in the growth of your business.
DISCLAIMER: This article expresses my own ideas and opinions. Any information I have shared are from sources that I believe to be reliable and accurate. I did not receive any financial compensation in writing this post, nor do I own any shares in any company I’ve mentioned. I encourage any reader to do their own diligent research first before making any investment decisions.
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