Be a storyteller
Another successful social media strategy is the art of storytelling. While Twitter’s 280-character limit might not give you much room to play with, you have a lot more freedom to expand on your points on LinkedIn, Google+ and Facebook.
This doesn’t mean you should use this opportunity to waffle. Your content needs to pack a punch within the first line. Once you have them hooked and tapping the ‘see more’ button, then you can elaborate.
Tell the world how you feel, give real-time updates and offer a snapshot into your world.
However, this rule doesn’t apply if you’re selling a product or service. If you want to sell the product or service features in more detail, create an explainer video or direct them to a landing page or specific website page. In this instance, the key is to drive intrigue, not to oversell.
Create visual content
Sometimes pictures speak louder than words. Social media demands beautiful imagery, engaging infographics and compelling videos.
If you have a popular piece of gated content – such as a white paper, blog or video – consider making them into free, digestible segments for your social media feeds. It’s not only a fantastic way of encouraging people to download or get access to the full version, but it also adds depth to your social media channels.
Visual content can provide value and position your business as a thought leader or industry leader. Some key examples of how to do this, include:·
• Turning segments of a white paper into a colourful infographic or Flipagram
• Taking juicy 10-30-second parts of a video training course
• Turning a quote from a blog into a graphic
Think quality, not quantity
You don’t have to post all the time on your social media channels. Generally speaking, 2-3 posts a week is usually more than enough, although it depends on what type of business you have.
The key to any social media strategy for local businesses is to make your posts relevant and personal. If you have nothing interesting to add, don’t post for the sake of it. Sticking to the good stuff will enable you to build relationships on social media and develop an engaged following.
Competitions are one of the best ways of generating an audience quickly.
Here are some competition ideas to get you started:
• Ask social media users to come up with a name for a product or service
• Ask social media users to answer a question or complete a puzzle
• Ask social media users to come up with a brand story for you
• Ask customers to share a selfie or picture of them at your business or using one of your products
Every competition needs to be incentivised with a great prize. You should always get entrants to like your page and/or share your post as well to maximise organic exposure
If feasible, use social media ad features to boost the competition to a local audience to ensure you attract the right people.
Establish the best times to post
Most social media networks now use some form of algorithm to filter the results they give people. Unfortunately, this means if you post at a different time to when your target audience is online, they’ll probably miss your content.
Below, you’ll find some effective times according to Sprout Social. While these times are certainly handy to consider in your social media strategy, you may want to experiment and see what works for you.
Over to you
There’s no denying that developing an effective social media marketing strategy is one of the best ways of connecting with prospects on their preferred method of communication.
Get it right and there’s no reason why you can’t use it to generate leads, build real engagement and improve your following within your local community.
If you’d prefer to leave the heavy lifting to a social media expert, Design in the Shires is here to help. For more information on prices and plans, get in touch with Design in the Shires today.