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Social Media Marketing
It's not enough to have a social media campaign anymore, everyone does. To stand out from the crowd, it needs to be innovative and interesting. Here's how.

The Pew Research Center estimates that around seven in 10 Americans use social media to connect with others, interact with brands, and share content. 

It's no wonder, then, that social media marketing has grown from a nice-to-have feature reserved only for tech-focused companies to a necessary component of almost every advertising campaign.

In fact, more than 4 million advertisers promote their wares on Facebook alone, racking up a worldwide ad revenue of more than $23 billion.

If you're ready to build a social media campaign to engage prospects, convert leads, and connect with current customers, there's never been a better time to start. 

Yet, with so many companies taking this route, it can be easy to become lost in the shuffle. Today, we're taking a look at how to craft your campaign to stand out from the rest. 

Ready to get started? Let's dive in!

1. Find Your Individual "Voice"

Take away everything that visually defines your brand -- your logo, your ad collateral, your color scheme, your typeface, and more.

Stripped of these images, would your content still be recognizable and unique? Would a customer or partner be able to identify it as coming from you? 

While a social media campaign can be highly visual, the reality is that almost every competitor is posting images and videos as a part of their marketing strategy.

The way to stop readers in their tracks and get them to stop scrolling? Catch their eye with content that's different, special, and meaningful.

To find your unique "brand voice" consider all the elements that make up your company's mission and vision. 

What kind of tone do you want to express? To what type of audience are you trying to appeal? What themes do you want to convey most of all?

These types of questions and more can spur dialogue to help you determine how to best state what you want to say. Once you've found your voice, stay true to it. Doing so helps build brand recognition and authenticity.

2. Provide Recognizable Value

Simply posting out of routine or habit isn't exactly a sustainable way to craft a social media campaign. If you're not passionate about what your brand is saying, it will show -- and it won't take long for readers to catch on, too.

One way to avoid the slump? Keep your content value-focused.

A post full of fluff with little to no meaning is equivalent to feeding your readers empty calories. Stand out by delivering sustenance that only your company can provide.

In a recent survey of more than 1,000 global consumers, the IBM Institute for Business Value found that out of all the reasons customers seek out businesses on social media, they most often do so to "obtain tangible value."

Focus on delivering information that's helpful, educational, and instructional, and don't delay on answering customer questions and inquiries. Along the way, you'll help establish your company as an industry thought leader and you'll also boost customer retention -- a win-win.

3. Differentiate By Network

Industry research reveals that there are key differences between social media networks. What works on Instagram might not be as effective on Facebook or LinkedIn, for example.

As such, when building your social media campaign, it helps to research how your target audience interacts with each site. Then, consider how your products and services translate onto each network.

For example, does your business offers items that are more visual in nature, such as photography or graphic design services? If so, you may choose to highlight some key images on visual-heavy sites such as Instagram or Pinterest, reserving more data-centered posts for Facebook or LinkedIn. 

While there's no one-size-fits-all approach for differentiating your content, it helps to understand what each social media network is best known for, and what type of user logs onto each. Here's a helpful guide to get you started.

A generic, blanket post that's the same across all of your accounts sends the message that your customers are all the same -- and we all know that's definitely not the case. Find and highlight their differences, then use your posts to let them know you prioritize -- and practice -- individuality. 

4. Analyze Your Audience

A social media campaign might be all about your company. Yet, it's important to remember the real reason why it exists -- your past, current, and future customers.

A successful campaign is one that keeps the preferences, opinions, and patterns of your business' target audience at the forefront.

Which Facebook posts garnered the most likes? Which hashtag was the most frequently re-tweeted? Did a certain color scheme resonate more effectively than another?

If you're not sure about the answers to these questions, consider analyzing your audience more deeply. You might opt to simply survey or poll them yourself (via social media!)

Or, you can capture a more in-depth audience view by logging into your social media sites. Most offer "Analytics" tabs that provide a snapshot of who's visiting your page, how long they're staying, and what content they're clicking on.

It's worth taking the time to study this data. After all, your posts could resonate very strongly with your internal teams but not be reaching the users you need to grow your business. This step helps ensure the time you're investing in social media marketing is generating the return your company deserves.

5. Get Out and Mingle

At its core, a social media campaign is a two-way conversation. 

That said, take a look at your current cross-network activity. Are you simply posting from your corporate account, expecting readers to seek out and engage you?

Or, are you making connections, posting on other pages, replying to comments, and leaving comments yourself? Doing so is a valuable way to leverage the "social" side of social media.

As you seek out these interactions, however, it's important to keep in mind step #2 above.

Making connections and sparking discourse are helpful ways to develop your brand's personality, build relationships, and improve customer satisfaction. Yet, they're only beneficial if they provide value -- both for your company and the audience it engages.

Ready to Launch Your Social Media Campaign? Start Here!

Are you a business looking to take your marketing efforts to the next level? If so, we'd love to help.

We are Auburn Alabama based advertising specialists dedicated to helping our clients make the most out of every interaction. From traditional media services to web development and digital strategy support, we'll help you stand out and get noticed.

Contact us today to schedule your free consultation and let's connect!

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