CREATING SOCIAL MEDIA OUTREACH FOR YOUR BUSINESS
Social media is by far one of the best ways to form great relationships, increase engagement alongside getting more eyes on your business, with all its advantages one would wonder why people engage in social media a lot these days. It is by far more than a medium for leisure but a medium to increase customer base outside your comfort base. Executing a successful social media outreach can be very difficult, tedious and even frustrating sometimes but the results one gets from it make your efforts all worth it.
What is Social Media Outreach?
This is the process by which you make use of the social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and most especially Instagram to raise awareness for your brand (be it business or personal), content or to build new impactful relationships. A lot of marketers use the means of social media to spam influences instead of to try in building a genius, mutually beneficial relationship, they just make it to be strictly transactional. It is not social media outreach if what you do is send direct messages to different people whom you have never interacted with and asking them to follow you back or to like and share your blog posts, rather it is called spamming and a lot of influencers hate such approach. What you would learn from this, is how to do social media outreach without spamming or annoying your potential customers.
Business or Personal Account?
A lot of people wonder if it is most profitable to their business, to use brands social media accounts or just get someone from the marketing team to handle the outreach. A lot of official brands put their social media outreach in the hands of a social media manager, its advantage being that it makes the brands campaign more personal instead of the usual contact the audience gets from message bots, its more personal to hear from Ivy, a quick wonder as to why companies now have a personal name for their computerized virtual assistant for example Leo Of the United Bank of Africa and Ivy of the Fidelity Bank. On the other hand, using the brands profile for social media outreach makes it more official particularly if the brand is well known. If you are to get a social media or community manager, make sure it is one that is associated closely with the company and not a random hire.
Powerful Social Media Outreach Strategies
A lot of businesses have a strategic content base in place but only few are putting their focus on even distribution and outreach. Social media outreach, if planned, structured and executed well could lead to an excellent means of generating leads and demand. The following are powerful strategies to help you widen your content exposure as well as increase its impact through social media.
- Have a set goal: Is the campaign to promote a blog post? Is it to get more followers? Have a set goal of what you hope to achieve through the outreach, which is the first step. Your goals will determine who you get in contact with, how you would build your prospect list and how you reach out to those on the list. Do try as much as possible not to set goals that are too high especially on your first outreach campaign. Ask for simple things like sharing your post on their own social media space, if you ask for the big things you may get a negative reply and it would be hard going back to the same person for something else, which means you have lost a potential audience.
- Creating a solid first impression: As Malcolm Gladwell suggests in his bestseller “Blink” – A persons first impression is “accurate and stands the test of time”, although this is not a general truth but a lot of people hold first impression as a determinant for one’s trait. The competition on social media runs really thick and the window of opportunity for your brand is very narrow, your brand would do well to make the most of its first impression. To have a lasting first impression on visitors here are things you need to do on your page:
Clarity: The brand’s page needs to have a distinct identity, this you can create by optimizing all content on your page.
Consistency: Posts on the page should be consistent without the breaks in between, this avoids sending a spam-y signal to your potential audience and should include fresh and relevant content (you can use content curation applications like DrumUp or Feedly).
Balanced emotion and logic connection: Content on the page needs to create emotional connects as well as bring logical value to your audience.
Usefulness: Now, make sure that at least 50% of your posts are directly useful to your audience.
- Promotion of Content: After optimizing your social media landing page and creating the content for it, the next thing to work on, is promoting your content on all social media channels.
First, you must understand the sharing habits of your audience network and work towards enabling them to share or comment on your content.
Secondly, you craft a perfect description for each content, this creates excitement about a particular piece, make use of hash tags to attract your audience and mention or tag someone when it makes sense that you should.
Third, learn to time your publishing right, it should go out when a maximum number of your audience are on the social media platforms.
Lastly, let your audience base be well targeted, share your content on the relevant social media groups and in the right social media platforms. Also, create a mailing list through which you can share your social media content through email on a regular basis and make use of social media plug in for easy sharing.
- Get introduced: A lot of businesses run on contacts, there is no questioning that, so it should not be different when it comes to using social media as a channel for your business. When implementing a marketing strategy on any social media platform, it is important that you give attention to fostering relationships as you do other things, as most businesses generally give time to creating and distribution of content. LinkedIn is a very good place to start, it has a system for introductions which you can leverage on to make your connections (having the right connections means those in the same industry, whose job description matches yours, if your brand is not for those along your career path, then you can extend your reach beyond these categories.
- Build a network: There are several ways by which you can initiate relationships on social media, one of which is through social media groups. You can create groups on Facebook or LinkedIn and automate a direct message of invitation to people, with the link of the group attached to it. You can invite those in your personal network to the group alongside those who have the right connections, request for them to also share with their friends. Another form is through networking with influences, when you regularly share their content, it serves as a means to get their attention but it also important for you to have an actual interest in your content, and no one likes a phony.
Now, apart from those outlined above, whosoever that is handling the brands page should make sure to respond to every query, comment and complaints with understanding and patience, with the intent to help and engage. Customer relationship and understanding brings a great turn to your brands social media followers into making them friends.
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