In the thirteen years since it’s launch, Facebook has become an integral part of our everyday lives. We’ve been refreshing our Twitter feeds for eleven years, and in the five years since its inauguration, Instagram has rapidly developed from a place to share snapshots of lunch to a leading source for brand development.
The powerful pull of social media goes beyond a means of staying connected. These platforms are excellent points for consumer engagement and product endorsements.
If you’re looking to upgrade your marketing plan through social media or boost user engagement across Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, here are the five key points you need to know.
#1 The Numbers
It can be difficult to see the big picture when you’re only using Twitter to retweet your favorite song lyrics. The stats below illustrate how widespread social media usage is!
- How many people use Facebook each month? 1.28 billion, or the population of the world’s second most-populated country, India.
- 44% of Twitter accounts go unused; nearly half of all accounts are tweet-less!
- Each second Linked.in gets two new users.
- More than latte art: Instagram has a per-follower engagement rate that exceeds Facebook’s by 50 times and crushes Twitter’s (120 times higher).
- Pinterest boasts upwards of 400% more revenue per click than Twitter and 27% more per click than Facebook
#2: Social Media and Your Competitors
When everyone from your co-workers to your mother-in-law are your Facebook friends, you know it’s imperative for your company to be active on social media. While the thought of surviving online alongside your competitors might be intimidating, there is an upside. Today’s analytics programs make it easy to track your competitors correctly. You can determine how they use social media and then figure how you compete.
Prior to Web 2.0, organizations would have to shell out huge amounts to get access to the details of their competitors. Now, that information is easily accessible and free with social media.
Take these tips to heart to compete effectively in the social media sphere:
- Click the blue button: follow your competitors.
- Track the content they’re generating. What types of details, products, or business aspects are they highlighting? Do they use graphics or copy-based content? How do they engage with customers?
- Use Facebook Pages to Watch. Create a list of pages and Facebook will monitor their statistics for you!
- Take advantage of Twitter Lists. Like Facebook Pages to Watch, prioritize certain profiles and keep track of your competitors’ tweets.
- Check out Google+, Facebook Pages, and Yelp Reviews. See what customers have to say. What is working? What could they improve on? Compare your findings with your own strategies.
#3: Content is Key
Social media is all-over, all the time. Customers can get weary of the onslaught of articles, pictures, and media. Don’t let your content get scrolled past. Make sure your content is engaging, authentic, and attention-catching. Developing quality, relevant content is crucial.
#4: Keep up-to-date with the latest social media networks
While you’re developing strategies to implement across Facebook and Twitter, don’t let that distract you from the numerous new social media platforms that are popping up constantly. Engagement with consumers through platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, or Snapchat puts your business at the forefront of social media marketing.
As we move forward, video content is quickly moving into the limelight of social media strategy. Likewise, live-streaming promises to be a fixture that turns social media marketing to a real-time affair. Brands use platforms like Snapchat and Instagram to develop brand narratives that are engaging, exciting, and current.
Visual platforms incite consumer involvement. Your visual content must be enticing and interactive, inspiring shares, likes, and comments.
#5: Engage, analyze, activate with free applications
There are a wide-range of tools that can help you monitor content reception, engage consumers, and crunch the numbers produced by social media platforms. Luckily, many of these tools are free! Learn how to work with these applications to reach wider audiences and develop a better sense of your target audience.
Hootsuite is one of the most popular tools available. The application allows you to track social media posts across multiple channels, analyze reception, and schedule tweets, Facebook posts, and Instagram photos.
Buffer monitors engagement and activity data on each of your posts. This level of tracking allows you to schedule your posts for a time when they will give you the most exposure.
Followerwonk gives you detailed insight into how your Twitter followers operate. Search for a username and find in-depth information on when your followers are likely to be online and what time they generally post. Plus, Followerwonk categorizes followers into specific categories, such as activity, follower count, or social authority, to help you better target content.
A Pinterest-exclusive tool, Viralwoot helps you schedule and promote pins, helping you to gain new followers along the way.
These tools make it easy to plan social media campaigns. Additionally, they equip you with the data you need to target content, schedule posts at the best times, and better develop your social media strategy.
A version of this article can be found at the 3XE Digital Conference blog.