From the first time Six Degrees was created in 1997 to the time when blogging sites became popular in 1999, social media created a sensation that is still popular in today’s world. It is this sensation that brought the world Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, among others. Today, social media is one of the strongest marketing platforms for businesses of all sizes.
Social network platforms play a very important role in connecting companies to their consumers. And the more people you can reach, the better your sales will be. All the same, it has not been easy for brands, especially startups, to ensure success on social networking platforms. Below are 5 tips that can help startups accrue a large social media audience.
If you are to grow your social media following, you have to create strong social profiles. The first step to building a strong social media profile on any social media site is by filling out all relevant information about your brand when creating social media accounts. Write a short description of your brand, provide your website link, business address and phone number. This way, people can identify who you are, and most importantly what your business can do for them.
Follow this step by including branded cover and profile photos. Once you are done, you can start publishing a few posts on your social account, even when you have zero followers. Just like you cannot advertise your website with no content, you should not begin marketing your social media channels without first adding relevant content that interested would-be fans can peruse when they visit your social pages timelines.
The mistake that most startups do on social media is to assume that everything goes; and that every post, content or image that they publish on their social media accounts is acceptable as long as someone else can see and read it. Posting low-quality content has a negative effect on your social media followers and, by extension hinders the growth of your following.
As a marketer, you need to get into the habit of sharing only quality content with the potential to make your product more alluring in the eyes of your audience. Remember, the goal is not to only increase your following, but also convert these followers into buyers.
So every piece of content you create must have a clear purpose and be appealing to your followers. If for example, your business is a clothing line, start by sharing content related to clothing, or fashion and design. That could mean sharing anything from videos to blog articles, presentations, podcasts, or infographics that you create or that are created by others.
In addition, consider doing a little research on content marketing strategies that focus on the basic principles of creating relevant, valuable, and consistent content to attract and retain your audience as well as push followers towards becoming customers.
Different social media platforms often have their own unique ways that you can use to find and connect with other people. While some will recommend that you connect with people you already know based on your friends list, others will give you the option of searching them on these platforms using their email addresses.
Facebook, for example, enables users to use advanced search tools or directly search for email contacts; Instagram tends to guide its users to their friends on Facebook, and Twitter allows users to search for email contacts as well as send invites to people that they already know.
The good news is that there are a lot of tools available to help you search for people and friends on social media networks. A good example is Social Searcher, a free social media search engine. With Social Searcher, all you need to do is enter your keywords, and the search engine will search through all social networks and give you results for Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, and Tumblr.
To grow on Instagram, you might want to use a tool like Social Growr that automates the process of growing organically. To use this tool, you just define your target audience and it does the rest; it targets for you active users on Instagram that are most likely to be interested and to want to engage with your brand.
As a new brand in the market, your products need to be promoted on multiple social media channels. You can simply start by opening social media accounts on at least four of the most popular social media platforms. This could be Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. After setting up these accounts perhaps you could ask your followers, say on Facebook, to follow you on Instagram or on any other social networking platform.
Furthermore, try other ways that help link one social media account to another. For instance, If you are using Pinterest, it allows users to easily connect to Facebook and Twitter. You can also use tools such as Woobox (a Facebook app maker) that allows users to add tabs for other social media accounts and their Facebook pages for free. Users can also create contests, sweepstakes, polls, among others across Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn, and Vine.
As you grow on social media, so does your brand authority. This is key to creating successful link building strategies as well as boosting the ranking of your brand on popular search engines.
How do you feel when people leave comments on your posts? Pretty awesome, right? Well, your followers feel the same way when you reply to their comments. Your followers are people just like you, and they feel appreciated and respected when they get a reply from you. When people feel ignored, it’s just natural that they will either run away or unfollow you and eventually stop caring for your brand.
If your followers leave comments on your post, it’s a sign that they like what you are publishing. So, it is important to respond and replicate these interactions. That way you are able to engage with your followers. As you engage with your followers, you are able to gather information that you did not have about your brand or service: perhaps it’s a complaint about your brand, or a comment on how your brand makes your consumers feel, either way, you get insights about your brand that you did not have before. And this can be of great help in your journey to delivering quality solutions to your customers.
However, engaging with your audience can be time consuming especially for startups with little or no time to engage with their followers. Luckily, this is the 21st century, and there are loads of tactics and tools to help you engage with your followers without consuming too much of your time.
With the number of social media users estimated to go up, from 2.46 billion in 2017 to around 2.77 billion in 2021, businesses should be striving to create and maintain a strong presence on social networking websites, if they are to increase sales in the near future.
Without a doubt, social media offers an excellent opportunity for brands to reach their target audience and create meaningful conversations that ultimately result in increased sales. While it can be considered hard for startups to grow and maintain their social following, applying the above tips will go along way to helping you in this process.