A Social media campaign can be frustrating, we have all been there. Sites like Facebook and Twitter make it easier than ever to stay connected with brands and people. While these networks let us form closer relationships and have quick access to people around the world, many small businesses and bloggers simply don’t know how to use social media effectively.
If you’ve jumped into a digital marketing campaign on social media only to see lacklustre results or utter disappointment, then you’re not alone.
let’s discuss some of the things that may be going wrong with your campaign.
Do You Have a Social Media Campaign Plan?
Many small business owners jump into a social media campaign without putting enough thought and research into creating a game plan. Time is money, so start by creating a social media marketing plan and asking yourself what you want to achieve and how you will get there.
There are many possible goals you want to achieve, from just inbound marketing to gaining insight into your customers or integrating online and offline marketing activities.
Regardless of your goal, you want to identify your ideal customer and establish yourself as an expert while discovering opportunities you may have overlooked and clearly expressing the value you offer.
Put a plan in place
Putting a plan in place also requires determining which social networks are most relevant to your business and then developing a unique plan for each one to build your reputation and visibility. Some digital marketing strategies work best for specific networks. Infographics are great for Pinterest and Facebook but not as popular on Twitter. Podcasts and ebooks may work better on Twitter than Facebook or Pinterest.
You’ll want to narrow your focus and stick with 2 or 3 networks so you don’t spread yourself too thin and stay where the audience is.
Are You Pushing Too Hard on Social Media?
“Why isn’t my social media campaign successful?”
When someone asks me this question, I often find they’re just pushing too hard, advertising products too heavily rather than incorporating them into an engaging campaign. Don’t think of social media as just another marketing strategy because it’s not about telling customers about a product but rather listening and engaging.
Sell, sell, sell just doesn’t work and it will quickly turn people off of your brand. You can’t promote yourself without listening to your audience. If you constantly talk about your business and what you offer, your network is going to fall flat.
The key to overcoming this and achieving a successful social media marketing campaign is engaging your audience. Don’t be afraid to respond to comments and questions, or start a conversion.
An Example: Taco Bell Election Day
There’s a lot to learn from the big brands that have social media marketing down.
Take this example from Taco Bell.
On Election Day, they found a creative way to talk about a current event while still relating it to their brand. You can also engage people the way Dunkin Donuts did by allowing fans to submit a photo of themselves enjoying your product to be a featured Fan of the Week. Follow their lead and engage with your fans by asking opinions and responding to their feedback to gain tons of advocates for your brand and loyal followers.
Are You Giving Fans a Chance to Engage?
Just as you need to engage your fans by answering their questions and comments, you also need to present them with an opportunity. You may want to occasionally use Facebook posts to get important information from your customers to use in future business decisions, but you’ll want to thank them by running some type of relevant promotion or giveaway that they will enjoy and that makes sense for your brand.
Calls to action, if used occasionally, can give you a creative way to inspire your fans and customers to engage with your brand. Think outside the box here! You don’t need to go with the over-done “comment with your opinion.” According to Social Media Examiner, simply adding a relevant question to the end of your post will increase engagement by 15% over questions at the beginning, so experiment with what works and what your fans want to talk about.
Here’s an example of a creative way to get fans to engage, courtesy of Bud Light, which asked fans to submit pictures of their Bud Light cakes.
Social Media Interaction
The guys over at Contactually also put together this great blog about engaging your small business’s fans on Facebook with examples of what they find works well for their brand. To get you started, here are some ways to give your fans an opportunity to engage:
- Offer fan-only perks
- Relate current events to your brand
- Put up a relevant poll
- Share important information relevant to your industry. A gold buyer may discuss common scams in the industry and how to avoid them, for example.
- Give readers tips or something useful, such as Jif peanut butter, which puts up pictures and creative recipe ideas for their product.
- Like other business pages and build connections by recommending someone else to your followers.
- Talk about how other businesses or clients are using your product or service.
- Do You Ignore Negative Comments?
Every business owner eventually deals with a disgruntled customer or client and, in today’s digital age, it’s not uncommon for people to post negative messages about your business or services on social media. Don’t make the mistake of just deleting the post! A successful social media campaign is authentic and transparent and deleting a post sends the message that you are uncomfortable about what your brand is doing.
Always face negativity head-on and address the concern. Believe it or not, this will actually earn you more brand loyalty. If someone had a bad experience at your restaurant, apologize and tell them you’d love a second chance to impress them. If someone found your customer service lacking, inform them you take the matter very seriously and you’re going to address it. The bottom line is you can’t walk away from this opportunity to show others that you care about your business — and them.
Remember, digital marketing is not about screaming your message and hoping that people will listen. To make an effective social media marketing campaign, you will need to blend your status updates to appeal to your followers’ interests, teach them new things, entertain them and promote your business.
Pay attention to your posts that get the highest engagement so you can discover what your fans really want. Don’t just sit back and put your social media campaign on auto-pilot; get in there and do the work to make your brand a household name!