Pixel by Pixel guide to social media

We have all heard how important it is to be present on social media. If you are not using social media to market your business – there has never been a better time to get started! Once you start to investigate the various social platforms, you will find that it is far more complex then it seems. There are certain social etiquette and unwritten rules to follow. Getting started without knowing where to begin can be overwhelming, and building a network of followers needs to be planned accordingly and takes hard work and savvy planning. But don’t despair! Here are some of our tips to help get you started.

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Why do businesses need social media?

Independently on what type of business you are running: your clients are online interacting with friends, colleagues, family and following brands for information. These platforms provide your brand with the opportunity to grow lasting and scalable relationships. And if you are not online to give your clients what they need – your competitor will be happy to take your clients from you.

But keep in mind that your social media pages should be an extension of everything you do in your company, and its important to establish what voice your company should be shouting to the world – and if planned correctly – it will open unique opportunities of inbound marketing, SEO, branding, public relations, sales and much more.

According to the Social Media Examiner Report 2015, the most effective networks for business are:

  1. Facebook
  2. LinkedIn
  3. Twitter
  4. Youtube
  5. Google Plus
  6. Pinterest
  7. Instagram

 

 

Customer service

It’s human nature to complain when something doesn’t go according to plan. And while in the past clients would usually complain directly to the company, in this day and age, they take to social media to vent their frustrations to a much larger audience, with the ability to amplify any complaints.

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The consequences can be detrimental if not handled correctly in the public eye, and it can be scary when it happens. If it does happen, think of it as the ideal opportunity to turn things around positively and put your company in a good light.

 

 

Twitter

The latest craze in social media has the potential to build your business a large following – the trick is to with the right mix of sales and fun content that’s relevant both to your company and current trends. However, with Twitters limit of 140 character updates, it can sometimes prove tricky to get your message across. Twitter is a great tool connecting complete strangers to come together over common interests and participate in conversations. Ultimately your success depends on your specific goals.

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Keep your tweets interesting. Even though the posts are short, every word counts, and there is nothing worse then constantly pushing out promotional messages. Don’t spam hashtags, always use hashtags that are relevant to the post you are sharing, and not randomly tag simply because they are trending. Brands have been known to get into trouble in the past for doing this in the past. Keep in mind of what is happening in the world – natural disasters, tragedies, terrorism etc. When big events happen its important to turn your marketing messages off as they can appear to be inappropriate and can backlash against your brand. This rule applies for any social media platform.

Don’t send automated DM’s (direct messages) as it’s considered spam. If you want to send you’re a message to everyone who decides to follow you, then do it in a personalized and unique way. And when your followers engage with you, make sure you respond. You will gain more followers quickly if people see that you take the time to reach out.

Check out chats and conversations relevant to your business and get involved in the chat. This will to get your account more visible and result in more followers with the same interests.

Need help? We can custom design your Twitter page. We can also monitor your company’s profile on Twitter, ensuring when your product or service is mentioned, it’s responded. By monitoring relevant hashtags and posting relevant tweets, we can ensure your business is at the forefront of current issues and mentioned regularly.

 

 

Facebook

Facebook is great for customer interaction, and holds the potential for your marketing content going viral via fans’ news feeds, driving significant traffic to your page.

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However, a common and understandable mistake that many people make is to limit their content to promotional updates. While it’s important to keep your clients informed about changes in your company, your followers want content that will build trust and engagement, which will lead to more conversions if done correctly. Consider sharing content that is relevant to your business, that make your customers’ lives easier, non-promotional company information such as your company taking part in community work, or taking part in impressive events – it’s a great way to humanize your brand.

Always be tactful and do not spam such as tagging everyone you know, sending mass-event invites and messages to like your brand pages from your personal account. Respond to your users and leave no question answered. Avoid making multiple updates within a short time span – it will annoy your followers, resulting in losing the attention of your audience.

Need help? Get noticed by letting our designers create an eye-catching design for your page. They can create a custom page that will be an extension of your branding, our marketers will ensure that your page is getting noticed by creating custom content and monitoring it’s performance. Our developers can create bespoke apps and synchronise Facebook with your blog, website and Twitter. So you can concentrate on running your business!

 

 

Google+

This platform may not be the most liked, but it uses many of Google’s own properties, enabling your content to be discovered easily through the giant search engine. Building a presence here is crucial. The platform is similar to both Facebook and Twitter.

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You can share links and hashtags, the only difference is that it uses circles, which enables to categorize people – such as clients, friends and general followers. This allows people to enjoy the network in more relevant ways. Google also has ‘communities’ which are similar to Facebook’s groups. This platform is particularly great for professional photography, and it rewards those for authenticity. So it’s a good idea to have your own authentic imagery. And like the other social network platforms – don’t spam. It is frowned upon and not appreciated.

How can we help? We can help you engage with your target users and ensure your content appears on the Google search by correctly tagging and making it easily discoverable. Our designers can also design you a custom page so that it matches the rest of your branding, and our marketers can create amazing authentic content exclusive to you, and you alone.

 

 

Youtube

Many people don’t know that Youtube is in fact the world’s second-largest search engine! It gets over one billion unique visits each month, and over 100 hours of video are uploaded every minute and it has become a primary source of video entertainment for users all over the web.

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This platform is a great to upload content and share it to other social network platforms to create engagement. It is tied in with G+ accounts, meaning you will need to link it to your brand page. If you have the comment section enabled on your videos, make sure you moderate them as they can quickly fill up with spam and interact with those who interact with your brand.

 

How can we help? It can prove tricky linking your Youtube channel to your brand page, and to the rest of your social media pages. We can set it up so that when a video is uploaded, it is automatically shared throughout your social platforms. Our marketers can create a content strategy that will best suit your brand to ensure you get the most from this platform. Our designers will also ensure that your page carries out the same branding as the rest of your social media pages that reflects your branding.

 

LinkedIn

This is the world’s largest professional social networking platform, which enables colleagues, potential clients and employees to connect with each other and share business related content. Users use this platform to show their professional background and resumes, and due to that, it’s the ideal place to advertise and look for jobs.

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Recruiters love it due to that functionality, but brands can use it to keep their followers informed about new developments in their company and to recruit new talent. It’s important to keep your company page up-to-date, and get recommendations for your products. It’s a powerful tool to build authority, and cultivate a professional network.

 

How can we help? We can help build your brand as an authority in your area of focus that will lead into conversions and trust. Our developers can create a widget that will automatically pull your blogs RSS feed directly to your company page.

 

Pinterest

As the name suggest, Pinterest is all about pinning your favourite things on the web and has taken the online community by storm. It’s a visual discovery tool, where users create and share boards or ideas. It’s ideal for hobbies, crafts, recipes, DIY and imagery. It’s also a great way to share with the community if your company is involved in community or charity activities. Pin pictures that your clients have taken of your products, it will make them feel like they have added value and give a sense of ownership.

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When re-pinning other people’s pins, be sure to give credit to where it came from, but change the caption so it represents your brand and show relevance, not forgetting about those all-important tags so that people can find your content!

 

How can we help? We will research the market and determine what your clients would like to see from you, to ensure that your page is interesting with sharable content. We can also set up your website so that your customers can easily pin pictures directly from your website, which will create more traffic and discoverability. It’s recommended that your account is verified so you get access to Pinterest Analytics that will show how many pins have been pinned from your website and how much traffic is being driven directly to your website, which we can do for you.

 

 

Blogging

A blog is a great way to mix relevant news about your business with industry news, and a constant flow of fresh content can help drive your website up the search rankings. Consumers are constantly looking for new and informative articles, and if they like it – it’s more likely they will share it, extending your reach. Depending on your business, the frequency and content that you should publish can be tricky. The key is to stay creative and think like your users would.

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How can we help? We can design your blog, add it to your website, submit it to search engines and even blog on your behalf, reposting to Facebook and Twittering about your latest posts and so as to extend your reach. Our marketing team will look into your website analytics to get a better understanding of what they would to read about, and write interesting articles based on their research, which will help your rankings on search engines.

 

 

Frequency of updates

This is a question we get asked frequency, and the truth is – there is no right or wrong here. It all depends on your audience and what you have to say. The best way to find out is by researching into what you can offer socially, what your competitors are doing and what your audience needs. This is more complicated then it seems and requires plenty of research into the best times to publish, age groups, nationalities etc. The more you understand your audience, the more success you will have running your social campaign.

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How can we help? Our team of savvy marketers love researching and can create a follower profile for your brand and determine what are the best times to publish. If you don’t have the time to publish on the various social media pages, don’t worry – we can do it all for you, by creating content and sharing it on the various platforms.

Social PPC

Social PPC are paid adverts placed on social platforms on CPC or CPM basis, where clicks or visits are counted individually with a price associated on a per-click basis, and is one of the more popular ways to market your business through social media. Facebook offers an ever-expanding advertising options, Twitter offers the ability of promoting tweets and profiles, LinkedIn allows you to sponsor a status update or job listing, or run text ads on Slideshare or other partners, Pinterest has sponsored pins and now Instagram has also jumped on the PPC train.

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How can we help? Our PPC specialist will create an advertising campaign based on your brand and target your market at the right times and places, ensuring maximum visibility and conversions.

 

Other platforms

There are so many other social discovery platforms such as forums, Vine, Instagram, Tumblr, Quora, Reddit and many many more. It can appear overwhelming once you start to discover more options. The main thing to always keep in mind is to know where your audience is at, and share it on the ones that are more likely to be seen by your clientele, and if the content it is good enough, it will be shared throughout the internet.

Need help? We can submit your content to social discovery sites such as Digg, Stumbleupon and Reddit and extend its reach for more discoverability.

 

Final thoughts…

You don’t need to be present on all platforms, but its important to find out where your clients are being social and target them on that platform. Listen to your clients and their needs, and take it form there. We hope that this guide was helpful. However, if you are still unsure about diving into the social media scene, then please get in touch with us. We would be happy to give you a free, no obligation quote.

Want some more social stats? Check out our social media infographic to get a better understanding of where your clients are more likely to be on.

 

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Author Nikki Hall

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