The Short Guide to Standing Out on Social Media
I think we can all agree that social media marketing seems necessary in this day and age, right? Social media is where the largest percentage of most target audiences consume media, and it’s the most trackable way to measure advertising success.
One perk that comes with using social media as a marketing tactic is that you don’t have to treat it like traditional advertising. You want to remain professional, of course, but you should also have fun and let your brand personality shine.
Understanding how to stand out in a world of “advertising overload” can be difficult at times, but here are a few steps to help:
Step 1 - Let your creative juices flow
Channeling your creative energy isn’t about coming up with the perfect idea in one fell swoop. It’s about racking your brain to understand what content interests your target audience and then finding a way to connect those interests back to your product. Sit down with pen and paper (old school) and write down every single idea – there are no bad ideas in this step. Whether they seem wacky, dumb or too far-fetched to possibly make sense in your market, keep writing. You aren’t going to use everything you write down, but this technique is an important step to getting to that one amazing, out-of-the-box, this-might-just-work idea.
Step 2 - Always consider why people use social media
The short answer: To see what’s happening. The long answer: To seek content they find engaging, relatable and enjoyable. If you’re like most social media users, you probably scroll right past Facebook ads because they are repetitive or boring, which means you aren’t even truly seeing them – your eyes are just glazing over them without absorbing the ad message. The same is true of your target audience, so take this opportunity to re-imagine advertising.
Be interesting. Get creative. Engage your audience consistently. Tell your story. Show off your brand personality. Be inviting. With compelling content that represents the heart of your brand, you will capture your audience’s attention and stand out from the competition.
Step 3 - Don’t post just for the sake of posting
A lot of great businesses are already using social media (high fives all around), but they aren’t pushing out the most unique or relevant content. When your business’s social media page is filled with gifs or starts to look like a never-ending infomercial, that’s when you know you’re just posting for the sake of posting - an easy trap to fall into. Yes, your content needs to be branded, but that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Mix up your content by posting relevant videos, articles, behind-the-scenes photos, polls, and quizzes.
Pro tip: Balance is key. Memes and gifs add personality but don’t let that be ALL you post. A diversified feed will get you the results you’re looking for in time.
Step 4 - Ask and you will receive
After your initial research and brainstorming, think about implementation. Think about the how. You’ve got these cool, new ideas to make out-of-the-box posts - which is half the battle. But you still have to implement the ideas and capture your audience’s attention. A simple way to do this is to ask. Yep, just ask! Leave them a call to action: visit our website, purchase now, enter today or share this post with your friends!
Step 5 - Evaluate your work (and learn from it)
After you post your fresh new ideas, take a look at the results. See what worked, what didn’t, and learn what your audience engages with most. Does your audience prefer posts that have fewer words in the caption, or do they respond best to posts designed to promote discounts? Asking yourself these questions monthly or quarterly will help your social media presence evolve with your target audience.
Social media is a great marketing tool when you know how to use it. Now go--start making some inspiring new content!