So you want learn social media marketing?
And why shouldn’t you?
If you’re a business owner and have a website live, running on internet creating business for you by acquiring new leads and customers.
Or you’re complete beginner and want to start your online business.
Despite controversy around privacy, hacking, fake news and all the other negative aspects of online life, the world continues to embrace the internet and social media.
Digital, mobile, and social media have become an indispensable part of everyday life for people all over the world.
More than 4.5 billion people now use the internet, while social media users have passed the 3.8 billion mark.
While the current world’s population is 7.7 billion. (Check the live stats here).
Worldwide, there are 3.80 billion social media users in January 2020, with this number increasing by more than 9 percent (321 million new users) since this time last year.
Global digital growth shows no sign of slowing, with a million new people around the world coming online every day.
This growth is clearly fuelling social media use.
Across mobile devices and computers, GlobalWebIndex reports that we now spend an average of 2 hours and 24 minutes per person, per day using social media, up by 2 minutes per day since this time last year.
And if you don’t use social media to market your business then you’re surely going to leave a bunch of money on the table.
Plus it’s not all about money, it’s about brand reputation, the ease of marketing and longevity of your business.
Now coming to the good stuffs.
Below is a table of contents, so you can quickly jump ahead to whichever platform interests you the most.
What is Social Media Marketing
It’s disappointing seeing Wikipedia’s definition of social media marketing.
It simply says, “Social media marketing is the use of social media platforms and websites to promote a product or service.”
Amazing, what a total no brainer, right?
I would like to go one-up defining social media marketing myself.
Social media marketing is the process of delivering value to the consumer in online communities where they congregate by using social media platforms to connect with your audience to build your brand, increase sales and websites traffic.
And by delivering value I mean creating content that help solve your potential customer’s burning pains and giving them some quick wins for FREE.
Your business getting promoted is only the result of social media marketing.
By delivering value via social media platforms, potential customers will:
- Become aware of your business,
- Begin to build trust in your company,
- Begin to share your information with their peers,
- Ultimately begin to purchase products and services from you.
The key point to all of this is delivering value to consumers where they congregate.
It’s not about interrupting them or yelling at them to get their attention, as has often been the case with traditional marketing.
It’s no longer about them coming to you.
It’s about you delivering value where they are.
Why Your Business Needs Social Media Marketing
The answer is simple.
Your customers are on social media.
More than 3.8 billion people are heavily active on social media, that’s around half of the world’s total population.
Over the last decade, social media marketing has become an indispensable tool in the arsenal of brands and businesses of all kinds.
With opportunities to build relationships, engage with customers, and increase sales like never before.
In fact, one study done by Hubspot they found out 90% of all marketers say social media marketing has increased their business exposure.
Success in social media marketing results from building strong and long-lasting relationships with customers and professional contacts as well.
And sharing the type of content and expertise that they will want to share onwards to their friends, family, and colleagues.
This approach will helps attract and keep loyal customers and connections, and encourage influencers to sell your products or services for you.
A complete reverse from the traditional marketing model.
And this is where the modern marketing is taking us.
Social Media Platforms
Social media platforms are platforms where social media marketing takes place.
There are hundreds of social media platforms used by billions of people at the moment.
However there are only few major social media platforms which can amp-up your brand awareness, lead generation and making customers for life.
Some of the major social media marketing platforms are –
These are the major social media platforms at the moment and we are going to study each of them.
You are about to learn some of the dirty little tips, tricks and tools to effectively market your business across all of the most popular social media platforms.
I hope you find the following advice helpful, whether you're a complete social media novice or a savvy individual looking for some extra expert tips to drive your business onto bigger and better things.
Here we go.
Facebook is the most visited social network in the world with over 2.5 billion monthly active users.
However, for various reasons, marketers can’t reach all of these users using Facebook advertising, and the platform’s own self-service.
Advertising tools indicate that the total addressable Facebook audience now stands at 1.95 billion.
Facebook has seen a decline over the past year too.
Its self-service advertising tools reported notably lower reach figures for India, Spain, and South Korea at the start of 2020 compared to just a few months earlier.
However, overall, Facebook’s audience reach has grown by 1% in the past 3 months alone.
Critically, marketers can now use Facebook to reach one-third of all the world’s adults aged 18 and above, and more than half of all the world’s adults aged 18 to 34.
Facebook still dominates
Before you dive in and start posting on Facebook, it pays to take some time to lay solid foundations to help get your brand presence set up properly, and in a position to impress fans when they find you.
Let's get started on the road to making your little corner of Facebook a destination that people will visit regularly.
Create a Facebook Page, not a personal profile
When you sign up to Facebook, you are assigned a Personal Timeline by default.
Personal Timelines, sometimes referred to as profiles, are designed for individual, non-commercial use.
For your business to take advantage of everything Facebook marketing has to offer, you must create a separate Facebook Page.
Here’s an example of a Facebook page.
See, people can like, share and follow.
This is how to build a community on Facebook.
To learn how to create a Facebook page for your business here’s a guide Facebook has given itself.
When you post some crazy amazing content on your facebook page, people are gonna find it, like it, follow your page and get to see all your future work.
However these days Facebook wants to do the business itself so it will not show you the love as it used to a few years ago.
Meaning, to utilize Facebook platform for your business you need to pay Facebook by running campaigns and ads.
Here’s everything you need to know about Facebook ads.
Here’s a quick stats about Instagram which I think you should know before you make your mind to do social media marketing on this photo sharing platform.
What are the elements of a top quality Instagram image?
As you now know, posting any old photo onto Instagram just won't cut it with the app's savvy audience; you have to be much more inventive and selective.
One of the best ways to discover what kinds of photos Instagram really wants brands to post.
In order to keep fans happy is to look at its recommendations for Instagram ads:
- No heavy use of image filters as a way to mask the "reality" of a shot, and no text overlays are allowed.
- Brands cannot feature their logo in Instagram ads other than as a natural, non-obvious part of the scene.
- Images used as ads must be "true to your brand", that is not shocking or cheesy, and no use of gimmicks.
- Photos used for ads should capture "moments", not products.
In other words, ads must not just be a shot of your product, but something more creative and inspiring.
- Ads should use ideas and take cues from the existing Instagram community, especially from popular hashtags.
As you read through the rest of the advice in the chapter, keep these ideas in the back of your mind as you think about how you want to shape your own Instagram strategy.
Instagram Profile Optimization
Optimize your Instagram bio, add a profile photo that fits a circle One of the easiest ways to connect with would-be Instagram followers is to optimize your bio.
Use the whole 150 characters allowed to encourage followers: give them a reason to follow you, tell them what makes you unique.
Remind people that they'll be among the first to know about special offers and promotions.
First to get a sneak peek at new product lines, and have the first chances to enter Instagram competitions to win stuff.
Don't forget to add the URL to your website in your bio section too.
The only place on Instagram where a link will be directly clickable.
Unless you have 10,000 followers and have a swipe up feature ( where you can put links in your stories).
Here’s a great example by one of the worlds best social media marketer Gary Vee.
So don’t forget to leverage this power of Instagram to drive traffic back to your site.
Keep the tone light and fun, include relevant keywords (for SEO), an Emoji if the mood fits, and a business-specific hashtag.
Interestingly, many companies are deliberately choosing to include a link to their blog instead of a web store.
Showing how they see Instagram as an opportunity to slowly build their brand image as a whole, rather than "force" people into buying right away.
Equally as important is to add a photo or profile yourself if you're the figurehead of your company (ideally of your smiley face) or, instead, your company logo.
As this will represent you all across the service Like Google+, Instagram (on its mobile app at least) favors a circular profile photo, which suits faces better than it does company logos.
And keep creating super valuable content for your community on your Instagram feed.
Make the most of the photo caption
The photo caption that accompanies every image on Instagram exists as a small but crucial part of your marketing strategy - never leave it blank.
Use it as a way to anchor the content of the image, and to reflect your brand's personality and tone of voice.
Examples of uses for the photo caption include adding a description of the product you are featuring, asking a question or starting a discussion and adding a call to action or including a URL that you want fans to visit.
URLs written within Instagram descriptions cannot be clicked on, so make sure that they are short and memorable, using a service like bit.ly to facilitate this if necessary.
Related to this point, another popular strategy to drive click-throughs from Instagram captions to a destination of your choice is simply to include a phrase like "click the link in our bio."
Your bio is always just one tap away and since the "Website" URL there is active, it will save people the time and effort of opening up a separate browser and typing in a URL, if that is their preference.
Interestingly, Instagram captions do not have a character limit.
Some brands, like National Geographic, use this to make each caption read like a mini magazine article.
It's a tactic that, combined with high quality images, keeps viewers immersed in their content for longer.
Pinterest has more than 320 million monthly active users making it one of the major social media platform.
How many of them are yours? 😉
With each pin you have an opportunity to put a link and when users click on that they are taken back to your site.
So creating eye catching pin and making people click on them is the real deal for any online business struggling to get visitors.
Although I have an in-depth article on every bloggers guide to Pinterest traffic I’m going to give some of the value here which are worth mentioning.
Create and share infographics
Infographics are a hugely popular way to share information on the web, and they look fantastic in Pinterest's vertical layout.
Consider creating your own infographics to share with customers.
Also repin the best infographics you find on Pinterest or around the web, as long as they are relevant and interesting to your audience.
Such as this one –
I created a Pinterest board dedicated to social media infographics and its content is amongst my most viewed and repinned.
Run an offer on Pinterest
People love offers - anything with the word ‘free’, ‘discount’ or ‘giveaway’ in it - and the visual nature of Pinterest is a great way to get them noticed.
Either pin images from your website and add a description of the offer featured there, or upload a pin direct to the site for an 'exclusive to Pinterest followers offer.
And how about getting even fancier, with something like a 'pin it to unlock' campaign?
Upload a pin detailing a special offer and tell your followers it will only run once the image has been repinned 'X' number of times, encouraging them to like, comment, and re-pin to unlock it!
This strategy will boost your re-pins like never before.
Advertising on Pinterest – Promoted Pins
Promoted Pins are a way for you to expand the organic reach of pins that you want more of your audience to see.
They appear in regular search results and smart feeds, and are marked with a "Promoted Pin" label.
Just like Facebook with Sponsored label.
When you pay to promote a pin, you only pay for the initial "boost."
Any other engagement or traffic that is generated via comments or re-pins (even after the promotion ends) is all FREE, so, done right, they can be a very cost-effective way of marketing your content and driving your business goals.
1. To get started, visit Pinterest ads and click Promote.
You can choose to promote an existing pin (search by name or URL), pin an image from your website, or upload a new piece of content from your computer.
2. Choose relevant keyword terms to describe your pin and help your target audience find it.
Pinterest will suggest related terms, which you can include if you wish, and the site recommends that you add at least 30 terms - a mixture of broad and specific - to increase the reach of your Promoted Pin.
When deciding upon which keywords to target with Promoted Pins, use Pinterest's Guided Search to help you determine what type of keywords people are using to find information about your service or product.
In addition, Pinterest ads robust keyword search tool can be used as a powerful generator of ideas regarding subjects to base your promotion around.
3. Target your pin to your audience by location, language, device, and gender.
As you choose, Pinterest will show you an estimate of the impressions that your Promoted Pin will receive on a weekly basis.
4. Choose a CPC (cost-per-click) and daily campaign budget.
You only pay when someone clicks through to your website. Select when you want your campaign to begin and end (or just keep it rolling).
5. Click Promote Your Pin to finish.
Within the Pinterest ads dashboard, use the conversion tracking tools to see how many clicks, engagements, and views your Promoted Pin has received.
Combine this data with Pinterest analytics to see how your Promoted Pins perform, and adjust your existing or future campaigns to work on improving your results.
I always tell this to my clients and customers - 2020 and beyond is video.
Despite rising competition from Facebook and other smaller competitors.
YouTube remains the world's most popular online destination for video creation and sharing, and it is absolutely fantastic as a marketing tool.
Using the power of video in conjunction with other social media outlets to show your business off to the world has countless benefits, and this guide will show you how to reap the rewards with YouTube.
One study done by Wearesocial about YouTube videos they found out roughly 3 billion people watch at least one YouTube video each month.
That means users watch about one billion hours of video on YouTube every single day. That’s 114,000 years of time!
10 years ago no one would have thought to make a living playing video games.
He is currently the most subscribed YouTube channel on platform individually with whopping of 103 million subscribers and 24 billion views in total.
Find the correct tone of voice
Your tone of voice in a video is very important. Remember, it's a conversation you're having, so avoid the cheesy radio announcer voice and speak naturally.
When expressing yourself on video, be real. Robotic speech or blatantly reading from a script will not appeal to viewers.
Talk directly to your fans as if you’re in a room with them; it couldn't get much more personal than that.
Hook viewers with a teaser or intrigue
With low viewer attention spans and YouTube making it so easy for them to click away to someone else's content.
It is crucial to use the opening seconds of your video to hook viewers in and keep them watching your recordings until the end.
This portion of your video only needs to be a few seconds long, but its effectiveness can pay dividends towards watch time and viewer engagement.
Examples include: -
Showing off the finished result in a "how to" video and telling your audience that this is what they'll have learned to create by the end of your clip. -
Offering a mysterious line or quip like, "What is the link between a potato and unbelievable sales conversion? Keep watching to find out..."
Write effective video descriptions
The first few sentences of your video description will appear in YouTube search results.
And the same few lines of it will appear below your content on the video's individual page followed by a "See More" link that must be clicked in order to read the rest.
Therefore, good practice is to use the beginning of your video description to accurately describe what your video is all about in one or two sentences, as this is the most valuable snippet for SEO purposes.
For people who click to view your description in full, consider adding the following information to all of your video descriptions:
- A description of your channel and a link to your channel page.
- A call to action asking viewers to subscribe, and a link to click.
- Links to more episodes or related videos and playlists.
- Links to your website and social media profiles, and a call to action to follow you.
- Information about your channel's video upload schedule, e.g. "New videos uploaded every Friday."
- Links to useful time-codes for long videos using the X:XX format, e.g. "Talk of social media marketing strategies starts at 3:44."
Ask for likes, comments, and subscriptions
One of the most popular uses for annotations is to ask for video likes, comments, or subscriptions. It can be an effective tactic.
Bombarding viewers at the start or throughout your videos with these types of messages is, at best, distracting, and at worse can be enough to put people off you and your channel completely.
If people find your content helpful they will keep watching and take action whatever you say.
So before finishing your video ask them to like the video, share with their friends and family and most of all subscribe to your YouTube channel along with pressing the bell icon.
So that every time you upload the video they get a notification about that.
Twitter is used by millions of businesses and individuals as a way to monitor conversations about their brand.
Interact with customers, manage customer service issues, promote offers, share rich and engaging content like images and videos - all within 280 characters per tweet.
In fact, one research done on twitter users by Oberlo, they found out, there are 330 million monthly active users and 145 million daily active users on Twitter.
63% of all Twitter users worldwide are between 35 and 65 years and average time they spend is 3 minutes and 39 seconds.
Optimize your Twitter username
Your Twitter username is extremely important, as it will make up part of your Twitter profile URL,
The address you'll put on all of your marketing material to direct people to follow you on the social network.
Try to keep your username short, simple and memorable.
Note: Although Twitter says 'Enter your real name, so that people can recognize you', this is not best practice for businesses.
Here, enter your brand or business name, as it will appear right at the top of your Twitter profile in big, bold letters.
Write an engaging Twitter Bio, use real names
Your Twitter profile is likely to appear high up in web search results for your individual or business name, so it's crucial that you use its 160 character bio right.
(The bio text is used as the search link's description and, of course, appears on your Twitter profile itself).
Tweet your top content several times
Twitter does, theoretically, show people all of the tweets from people who follow an account.
But the site is so dynamic and fast-moving, and people also check them at different times of the day, that your content can easily be missed.
To help prevent this, don't be afraid to post the same content under different guises, several times a day.
That is experiment with unique wording and different headlines for the same article one or two hours apart, then note which wording performed best.
If you produce a lot of valuable "evergreen" blog content, i.e. that which will remain useful no matter its age, use a service like Buffer.
On buffer you can literally schedule down all your upcoming tweets and they will be tweeted without you having you login to your twitter account.
There you have it. YOU now have an overview of the 5 major social media platforms for your social media marketing.
Although according to Wikipedia, there are 185 and that number is only growing.
So you should use your social media marketing strategies on at least a few of them. The major ones like Facebook, Instagram Pinterest, YouTube, Twitter etc…
But first and foremost figure out where your target audience congregate and get heavily active there.
Create and share crazy amazing content and ask people to like, share, comment and follow.
Making them submerged in the sea of your FREE content and later turn them into leads and ultimately into customers.
That’s the point of social media marketing and after reading this guide I’m sure now you’re going to take massive action on building your social media presence.
Now the ball is in your court.
Where do your potential customers congregate?
Which platform will you focus your social media marketing strategy on?
And what other social media platforms are going to beat the ones shared in this guide?
Let me know in the comments.