Social media has rapidly evolved over the past few years. Getting the attention of your target audience has become increasingly difficult. As a result, many small businesses have been left behind while a few savvy digital marketers are continuing to see Also growth. That said, many strategies are still working in 2018. Here are five that small businesses need to be using today to make social media work for them.
1. Local Based Social Media Tactics
The best place for small businesses to get started is to employ local based social media tactics. For instance, Facebook has a helpful check-in feature. You want to get local customers to check-in for gifts or discounts. Pushing this tactic means that Facebook follows up with these customers to submit a review. Having positive reviews will result in more customers choosing to do business with you.
Another example is Instagram Location Stories. Instagram Stories is a feature that allows you to compile photos and videos in a storytelling format that disappears in 24 hours. The location feature in Instagram Stories allows users to pin the location. Therefore, you get more exposure as a small business and reach out to customers to feature their visit to your location in their content.
2. Influencer Marketing
One of the biggest mistakes that small businesses make is not pursuing influencer marketing. There’s an assumption that this is a strategy reserved for the big boys. Also, many business owners believe that they need to target the big influencers for this strategy to be worth executing. These assumptions are far from the truth.
Glossier, a New York-based startup, had the mentality that every single member of their audience is an influencer. They used a grassroots approach and reached out to their customers and followers whether they had a few dozen followers or a few thousand. The result? The company ended up doubling their audience to 236,000 in less than a year.
3. Contests that Produce User Generated Content
Contests are one of the best ways to grow your audience. It creates buzz for your product/service and expands your brand. Many of the world’s biggest brands are using contests and giveaways to create user-generated content as part of their social media marketing mix. Small businesses can see the same benefits of the strategy. However, there are many things that they need to get right to make them pay off.
Understand the laws regarding giveaways and contests and research the policies for running one on the social media platform. Promoting these contests through ads, hashtags, referral based rewards, and influencers is vital. Finally, small businesses need to entice users to produce user-generated content. This includes submitting content related to the company, retweeting details of the contest, etc.
4. Chatbots via Facebook Messenger
While chatbots are new, many digital marketers are using it effectively with their other social media marketing strategies. Chatbots can help assist the sale, provide customer support, promote your offer, re-engage cold leads, and more. The idea is to use it as a supplement to an existing campaign like a follow up to a Facebook advertising campaign. Here are some great examples of big brands that are using chatbots successfully.
5. Multi-Platform Social Media Advertising
Many small businesses need to go beyond Facebook advertising if they want to see strong growth. While Facebook is one of the most highly trafficked and targeted sources of traffic, it is also very competitive. You want to explore other social media advertising platforms like Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and LinkedIn. Many of these social media advertising platforms offer local targeting as well as other advanced targeting options like Facebook.
It’s also a smart idea to integrate existing pay per click and search campaigns with your social media advertising for retargeting. This ensures that you get more visibility, reach, and brand awareness. You want to leverage your existing campaigns to succeed on new platforms. You also want to make sure you’re not putting all your eggs in one basket because Facebook will continue to evolve their algorithm.
Those are five social media marketing strategies that small businesses should be using in 2018. Because social media is becoming more noisy and crowded, it’s harder to win over the attention of your audience and keep them engaged. It’s vital that small businesses continuously experiment with new strategies and explore other platforms to sustain the growth online.