Trends in social media continue to evolve and new platforms are popping up everywhere. With more than two billion people using the Internet and this number growing by the day, it is difficult to fathom how to keep so many people engaged. Social networking users alone spend an average of 3.2 hours per day online. Vast technological developments require that marketers develop a strategic approach to social marketing to take full advantage of the opportunity to connect with their audience.
In our recent Twitter chat Rules of Social Marketing, we were fortunate to have Sheryl Victor Levy as cohost. For the past five years, Sheryl has been leading digital strategy and solutions for PHIL & Co., a full-service marketing communications agency in Manhattan. Sheryl also is the founder of Savvy Strategy, a digital coaching and marketing consultancy, working with individuals and clients in the entertainment, licensing and non-profit space.
Sheryl shared the following useful tips for social marketers:
What are the benefits of social media marketing?
- Real-time brand extension, crowdsourcing brand perception, building loyalty and deepening customer relationships.
What is the best social strategy approach?
- Know that there's no one size fits all.
- Develop a strategy based on business goals, consumer/audiences, communication goals and resources.
- Research competitors and brands that are doing it right.
- Survey your community: What do they want? What will they respond to? How do they want info delivered?
What are the top three habits of successful social media marketers?
- Listen, strategize and optimize
What are some tips to create an affective social media marketing campaign?
- Definitely know your audience. Do a lot of listening. Develop a persona and know their wants and needs.
- Be genuine and transparent. Consumers can see through brands! Match your tone to your product.
- Craft content that is searchable, shareable and relevant. Use hashtags so your audience can find you
How can you determine which social platform is right for your business?
- Platforms must match your audience and objectives. Facebook for example, is the broadest, yet doesn't work for Millennials.
- Twitter is great for leveraging trending topics. Instagram is better for visual representation and reaching Millennials.
- Pinterest, Snapchat, Vine, YouTube all have a value and should be used strategically.
What does the future of social marketing look like?
- Multicultural, niche, commerce, personalized, mobile and offering a seamless brand experience
Social marketing is affective, and with billions of Internet users, it is advantageous to meet consumers where they are engaging. “We live in a “multicultural world,” states Sheryl, and she suggests, “Marketers broaden their reach. Video, images and graphics lead the way in digital trends. People are becoming more visual. The proof is Facebook acquiring Instagram.”