Social Media Marketing: Getting it Right the First Time
You just replied to an Instagram DM. And just before you close the app, you see a post with over 500 comments and about a thousand likes. Your interest is piqued. “I can give this post two minutes to see what is making people drop comments and spare the effort to double-tap,” you tell yourself. And so you get on with it, scrolling through every comment until you find the one you consider relatable and perhaps even funny.
Some people are lucky to have hacked this social media game.
The truth is: it’s not a game and it’s not luck. You, too, can have likes, comments and most importantly, the high-quality leads you dream of every so often. And you can get it right from the very start.
In this article, prepare to be introduced to social media marketing.
You’ll learn how to nail successful social media campaigns on your first try, leaving you with a long list of quality leads and more sign-ups, followers, comments, likes or subscribers depending on the most important metric to you per time.
Let’s start with a brief definition of social media and how it started.
What is social media and how did it start?
Merriam-Webster defines social media as “forms of electronic communication (such as websites for social networking and microblogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content (such as videos).”
According to “The History of Social Networking” on the tech news site Digital Trends, the expansion of the internet in the 1980s and 1990s made it possible for the launch of online messaging platforms like CompuServe, America Online (AOL), and Prodigy. They were the first to popularise the use of digital media for interpersonal interaction, introducing people to the world of email, online message boards, and live video conferencing.
Search Engine Journal notes that Chat rooms on America Online (AOL) were used by famous people like Michael Jackson to host one of the first “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) sessions, which attracted more than 25,000 users.
However, it was not until 1997 that the first social networking sites Bolt and Six Degrees launched. Bolt was developed by Dan Pelson to serve as a medium for electronic mail, voice mail, voice chat, message boards, and instant messaging for users between the ages of 15 and 20. After 11 years, Bolt made the announcement that it would be closing down on its community forums.
Andrew Weinreich, the creator of the social networking site Six Degrees, is considered by many to be the “father of social networking.” He developed the platform with the intention of enabling users to make connections with individuals they were not yet familiar with.
The year 2001 arrived, and with it brought the debut of Friendster. These simplistic platforms attracted millions of users and made it possible for them to register email addresses and participate in fundamental forms of online networking.
But more importantly, digital social communication took a different form with the introduction of the LiveJournal publishing site in 1999. Weblogs, also known as blogs, rose in popularity — and this occurred around the same time that the technology company Pyra Labs, which had been acquired by Google in 2003, introduced its Blogger publishing platform.
The 2000s saw today’s social media platforms take shape
LinkedIn was established in 2002 as a website that facilitates professional networking for people who are focused on their careers. By the year 2020, the number of users across the globe had surpassed 675 million. It continues to be the social media platform of choice for individuals seeking employment as well as human resource managers who are looking for candidates who meet certain qualifications.
The evolution of Facebook into Meta started in 2004. Facebook was launched by Mark Zuckerberg and a couple of his Harvard friends who simply wanted to connect all Harvard students. The result? The site eventually opened up to students from other universities, and by September 2004, it had attracted one million users.
There were six million active users on Facebook by the end of 2005. The now-famous Facebook Wall and News Feed were among the many new features. The mobile version of Facebook was released in April 2006 and the website proper was made accessible to anyone over the age of 13 in September.
Now that we’ve looked at the rise of social media, it’s time to help you understand how you can succeed in leveraging social media to promote your business and reach wider audiences.
How to get social media marketing right as an amateur
Create a list of your most important social media goals
You can’t succeed without outlining the goals you want to achieve by leveraging social media for your business. Be clear on the goals that matter the most to your business.
Are you directly gunning for more sales? Is your most important metric brand awareness? By starting with your goals, you’ll be able to glide through the other aspects of social media marketing.
Identify your target audience
This is the next step you should take. By identifying your audience, you will be able to create an effective content strategy that will have you crushing your goals like a pro.
Take your time to analyse and segment them based on psychographics and demographics. This will facilitate the process of ideating the right content that will appeal to your audience.
Choose the platforms carefully
You should not try to master all the top four sites at once from the very beginning. This can be overwhelming and challenging for you as someone who is just starting out. Instead, be selective about the platforms you will be using. And don’t go beyond two at first. You’d find this approach easier and more effective as you begin mastering the practices of marketing on social media.
ALSO READ: How to Craft Highly Shareable Social Media Content: 12 Top Tips
Keep an eye on the competition
It’s possible that your competition and industry cohorts can offer you some helpful advice. Locate a select group of competitors that are using online marketing strategies.
Check out their websites. Is there evidence that they are blogging? Their most popular social media platforms may be revealed by the number of shares their posts receive.
The frequency of your posts must be consistent. People only remember you if you’ve been in their faces for a long time.
You don’t have to post every day but ensure that you follow the schedule you’ve set in place.
It’s enticing to dive right into posting after joining a social network, but you’ll learn a lot by watching how other people use the platform first. You’ll learn to recognise subtleties in the system. You will reach judgements about what constitutes proper and improper protocol.
Your account is not an island. And while you may be posting relevant and valuable content, your interaction with other forums, groups and pages on the platform will go a long way in pushing your brand to the right audiences.
You might never have to use paid ads if you interact well with the right accounts on the platforms you use.
Remember that you are to interact —- not spam —- so that you don’t get blocked. And while you go about interacting with other accounts, don’t do so indiscriminately. Be tactical about it.
Share relevant insights and join conversations with dignified remarks. This will draw people to your page and then you can convert them with the content you’ve been posting consistently on your page.
Also, you don’t have to do this alone. You can reach out to us at Detail and Avedia to help you position your brand directly in the faces of the most important people who will not only buy from you but also become loyal members of your brand’s community.
READ MORE: How to Know If You Are Doing Social Media Marketing Right