It goes without saying that today companies understand the power of social media. However, many of them start hundreds of social media campaigns that never accomplish anything substantial. With no clear objective beyond getting fans and followers, social media campaigns often fail.
Social media gives businesses a chance to manage their online reputation and engage with customers. When properly done, a social media campaign will result in a bigger bottom line. To get the best possible outcome for your next social media campaign, consider including the following components:
1) Planning the campaign:
Before rushing into a social media campaign, you should plan your overall strategy. The strategy should reinforce the style of your brand and strengthen its message. Planning should start with research into the various social networks to determine which ones offer the best support for your goals. Every social site has different strengths and weaknesses and attracts a different set of users. You will probably want to focus on the sites that host the greatest number of customers in your target market, and then create content that works well for those platforms.
Your research should also include some recent campaigns executed by other industry players. The knowledge thus gained can help you leverage current trends and select appropriate tactics. For example, a social media campaign can include either organic or paid tactics. If you plan to use paid advertising, your first priority is to set an appropriate budget – you get the point.
Also, make sure that your team members have well-defined roles to avoid confusion and maximize efficiency. Finally, you should identify the metrics to measure the success of the campaign.
2) Identifying goals:
Without setting clear objectives, you will not know if your campaign has achieved success. Every company needs a clear picture of what they want to accomplish, so they can map an appropriate path. Everyone involved must understand the ultimate goal of the campaign, but they must also set incremental goals and organize daily activities to make sure the campaign stays on track.
Although appropriate goals depend on the organization, most social media strategies will have some overall objectives in common:
- Boosting brand awareness: A social media campaign increases the number of online mentions of your brand, making the public more familiar with it.
- Increasing traffic to the business website: When people visit your website, your company can give them more information about available products and services, and collect quality leads.
- Improving conversion rates: A social media campaign should result in more sales.
- Build customer loyalty: Customers are your most valuable asset, so you should use social media to satisfy and retain them. Your campaign needs to encourage repeat sales by including exquisite customer service.
3) Promoting the campaign:
To get the results you want, you must also use other channels to promote your social media campaign. Such integration helps you engage prospects and customers who might not actively use social media.
For example, you can start developing your campaign several weeks in advance by sending promotional emails. Consider using all your touchpoints to inform people about your campaign and encourage participation. When you build anticipation for the upcoming event, you will have a higher participation rate than if you began your campaign without fanfare.
4) Engaging the audience:
In addition to making announcements about your social media campaign, you should go a step further and start conversations. Dialogue makes social media effective, so make sure you converse with your audience at every stage. As you prepare for the campaign, generate excitement by leaking details and encouraging participation. During the execution phase, post updates that will keep your audience motivated. When you wrap up your campaign, discuss its results with participants. Use the opportunity to build the value of your brand, convert sales, and inspire loyalty.
5) Analyzing results:
Compare the results of your campaign with the goals you set during its planning phase – an objective evaluation will help you interpret its effectiveness. The lessons you learn will help you improve the results you get with subsequent efforts.
Use all the available social analytics data to find out how many people interacted with your company as a result of the campaign. Use those analytics to analyze the behavior of your customers as they interacted with your brand. You should also consider using social monitoring tools to track mentions of your brand across all your social channels so you can gain further insights into the effectiveness of your campaign.
Social media give companies fantastic opportunities for customer engagement that transcends the mere number of your likes and follows. By setting objective goals for your social media campaign, you create benchmarks for its success and a framework that guides planning. Precise planning and execution of your campaign will help you connect with customers and achieve concrete results. Ultimately, you will yield success and see your business grow.
- Planning: Start your campaign by choosing appropriate social networks, and proceed to make an overall strategy.
- Goals: Set clear objectives, and then gradually attain them. Some of the common objectives include increasing brand awareness, website traffic, conversion rates, and customer loyalty.
- Promotion: Make announcements about your social media campaign before it launches. Use available channels, such as sending promotional emails.
- Engagement: Converse with your social media audience – leak details about the campaign, post updates, discuss its results with your audience.
- Analysis: Measure your success with available tools and use those results for further improvement.
Author: Natalie Smith is a copywriter from Seattle. The topics she covers pertain to digital marketing, social media, customer service, and business in general. Reach her @NatalieS1014.
[Featured image: Bethany Legg]
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