Social Media Marketing Sites and Tips

Monday, January 26, 2015
Michelle Pease
Communications Specialist
Schooner Strategies

There’s no doubting that social media is an essential part to any company’s marketing strategy. If your company doesn’t have social media, make it a new year’s resolution to set up an account or two—or more.

Part of marketing is knowing which platform is right for your company. Forbes recommends perusing as many social media sites as possible to see which ones fit best for your brand, and then working with no more than five. Once the sites are chosen, make sure the team spends time filling out the profiles thoroughly and that they post content consistently. If posting content becomes overwhelming, consider using an automated platform like Tweetdeck to help out.

Another important part of social media is analytics: if they are available on the site, use them—identify the successes and failures of each campaign, and turn this information into action. And of course, if you find a form of social media isn’t working, it’s okay to quit. No one benefits from dragging out a bad experience.

Below is a discussion of the most popular social media sites for companies and the best ways to use them. TheHubComms.com and SocialMediaExaminer.com both had great information regarding these specific social media strategies.

Facebook: Paid Media at its Best

  • Spy on the competition.  Chances are the competition has a Facebook page, so there’s no harm in seeing stats on their most popular posts, total engagement and weekly growth and likes. If you find they’re doing something right that you’re not, you can adapt their strategy into your own.
  • Use images.  Visuals are king—statistics show that people interact more with images than text. In fact, Facebook ranks images higher than text.
  • Post about trending topics.  With the trending topics page on the side, see if your company can’t comment on the timely news. Be careful not to offend users, though.
  • Use a call to action.  Posts can be targeted to demographics, interests and regions—be sure to take advantage of that. Also use one of Facebook’s five calls to action, including phrases like “Shop Now” or “Learn More”.

Twitter: The Company’s Personality

  • Mine a better audience.  Find a relevant person to follow and dig into his or her “lists”. Once you follow those people, they will hopefully follow you back, giving you a bigger audience.
  • Use hashtags strategically.  While it’s tempting to want to hashtag every other word on Twitter, it’s important to only hashtag strategic words or phrases. Use the same hashtag in posts to gain an audience.
  • Be human.  Remember to be kind and friendly to your followers. On Twitter, users don’t mind self-promotion as long as it’s entertaining.
  • Promote tweets.  Promoted tweets appear in a user’s stream even if they don’t follow you. This feature also includes conversion tracking, which lets you see sales activity related to the promoted tweet.

LinkedIn: Best for B2B Content

  • Make a company page.  Posting blogs, videos, infographics, etc. on your company page is the most effective way for followers to get your content. LinkedIn prioritizes articles posted by the company, so they will show up in the followers’ feeds.
  • Create a Follow Company ad.  Paying for a “Follow Company” ad can get your company the extra exposure and bigger following that it needs. When a follower clicks the ad button, it will be posted to their network, thus widening the company’s reach.
  • Use LinkedIn Publisher.  Posting valuable content through Publisher can greatly expand your reach, even if your company is small.
  • Use inMail.  Companies can use inMail to send private, targeted messages to prospects. inMail also comes with analytics to see which emails were interacted with the most.

Pinterest: The Place for Inspiration

  • Promote pins.  Promoted pins will appear in a user’s feed, even if they do not follow the company. This feature can promote brand awareness and a higher click-through rate.
  • Use Pit It buttons.  These buttons allow a user to add a pin to their board with one click.
  • Prioritize Vertical pins.  A Vertical pin is one that reads vertically; these look better in lay out and tend to have a higher click rate.
  • Longer pin descriptions work better.  Although brevity is preferred on other sites, for Pinterest, if the descriptions are long, they tend to get shared more and show up in search results of words you use.

Tumblr: Quirky Visuals

  • Create attractive visuals.  Tumblr is all about GIFs. Custom-made GIFs get much more engagement than photos because they can be used to tell a story, be funny or relate to the viewer.
  • Use the reblog tool.  Engaging with your following by reblogging their posts or comments is a surefire way to gain a higher following.
  • Tag your posts.  Tagging all posts ensures that when users search for certain terms, they will see your post in that tag. Tumblr also has a “featured tags” section that can show you what is currently trending.
  • Pay for sponsored posts.  Sponsored posts appear in a user’s dashboard along with the other blogs they follow. Even if they don’t follow the company, they can like or reblog the post.

Instagram: Eye-catching Ads

  • Be true to the brand.  Ensure that images posted look and feel like the company.
  • Share experiences.  As TheHubComms puts it, “Offer a view into the world or lifestyle that your brand makes possible through the eyes of the people who use your products and services.”
  • Find beauty everywhere.  Pictures can show how your company sees the world and its people.
  • Inspire action.  Start a movement with an image and ask followers to participate by hashtagging their photos with your unique hashtag.

A Good Website Matters

After all that work improving the company’s social media sites, the last step should be to review the company website. After all, the goal of maintaining a presence on social media is to spread brand awareness and eventually drive traffic to the website. If the website is outdated, consumers may navigate away from your page.

The best way to determine whether or not your website needs a redesign is to pretend you are a consumer and that you are visiting the company website for the first time, writes Insight180. Take a look at the colors, images and text. What do you like and dislike? Once a list has been made, have a few coworkers do the same thing. Ask them lots of questions. Does the site layout make sense? Are you compelled to do business with your company? If not, a redesign may be the right answer.

After all, a company has about 10 seconds to engage a visitor on its website. Providing real content can keep a prospective client on your website longer, and most importantly, keep them coming back. At the end of the day, substantive content that engages the visitor and forms a community is essential. Schooner Strategies provides both the business and technology services necessary to help you increase your visibility in the marketplace. The Schooner team is able to provide oversight through the entire web development process—from design to copywriting to coding.

For more information on our web design and development services, as well as our strategic communications, please feel free to reach out to us at 410-863-7301 or info@schoonerstrategies.com