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Ever met anyone who doesn’t know (or use) social media? Whether you live in the city or in the suburbs, you surely heard of the far-reaching and almost omnipotent “social media” and its many faces. It is no stranger to you, to that random kid crossing the street, or to its 3.8 billion active users, making it the perfect avenue to deploy your marketing strategy.

And it doesn’t stop there. According to research, social media also has a huge influence on purchase decisions, with more buyers browsing on these sites for product research as compared to other platforms. So if you want to build brand awareness, drive traffic, and increase conversions, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get extra social.

A Closer Look at Social Media Marketing

Humble Beginnings

Despite the rise of other social media platforms, statistics show that Facebook still leads the race when it comes to the number of active users with its figures peaking at 2.5 billion last April 2020. But while it serves as one of the best platforms to engage your segmented audience, social media marketing (SMM) didn’t start there.

Based on this infographic, social media began in the early 1970s, when the very first email was created and sent. This signaled the beginning of a new era: digital social interaction. And as far as businesses are concerned, interaction is always a great stepping stone towards spurring engagement and curiosity.  

Social Media Marketing in 2020

Today, social media marketing bridges your business to a targeted audience and enables you to attract engagement through your unique products and services. Most top-ranking platforms were designed with built-in analytics tools that help you filter your audience, streamline your content, and monitor the success of your ad campaigns.

And instead of just tracking sales and post “likes” and “shares”, these tools also give you the power to learn about how your audience perceives your brand by allowing you to take a peek at product mentions and conversations, which you can also respond to. Track progress and communicate with your audience–you can do both and a whole lot more by creating an SMM technique that helps you boost product awareness and show the world that your brand is reachable and personable.

But while it may sound simple, there are a lot of strategies that you should learn to keep you closer to your short and long-term goals. A great way to start is to use social media advertising and analytics tools, which act as a pathway towards different end-results.

But to simplify, if you want to:

  1. Target a segmented audience, turn to social media advertising, where you filter your audience as you run different ads and campaigns
  2. Track your post’s reach, level of engagement, and conversions, use analytics tools

Social Media Marketing and Demographics

Social media marketing is an umbrella of strategies that help you encourage brand awareness, boost sales, build strong relationships with consumers, and learn from your competitors. We can pick this all up from our short overview earlier, but how so?

These platforms cater to specific audiences, which are all reflected in their demographics. Based on Pew Research Center, young adults were the earliest to adopt social media use, but the older generation is also getting more active on these sites.

The study also shows that only a minimal percentage of users who are 50 years old and above use Instagram and LinkedIn. Now, how does this affect your marketing strategy? Let’s analyze:

Let’s say you own a brand that sells a special shampoo for the elderly. Putting these statistics into account, it isn’t hard to tell that even the best campaigns won’t help you hit significant sales if you run it on Instagram or on other platforms that simply don’t have the market you are targeting for. It’s basically like writing a really good book on a deserted island. The book is packed with value, but no one is there to read it.

Demographics, along with other social media tools, can help you create an efficient, timely, and targeted marketing plan that speaks to your audience in a platform most familiar to them.

Basic Social Media Marketing Dos

1)    Create a Strategy and Commit to it

There’s one thing that takes winning brands away from mediocracy: commitment. Your commitment to know and understand your audience and create a campaign that can strike their interests. Your commitment to post quality content with consistency. And your commitment to set and follow deadlines. 

When creating an SMM plan, commit yourself and your time in creating a strategy that really works. Set your goals, identify and segment your target audience, and choose a marketing persona that will speak to them.

2)    Create and Publish Content

Publishing marketing content is now easier, thanks to social media. Just like posting content on your personal account, you just have to upload or create a post and publish (or share) it like you normally would, except this time, you need to take social media algorithms into consideration.

To start on the right foot, ask yourself these questions: Is your post relevant enough? Does your post have the potential to rank well? Did you use the right hashtags? Did you tag the right people? When advertising, don’t just publish content. Do so with great content and intent.

3)    Target Audience Engagement

Selling on social media without listening to your audience is like arguing with your VERY angry mom: it won’t make sense and it won’t make any difference.

It’s the same with running a marketing campaign with two ears shut. When you don’t listen or engage with your audience, you won’t get to understand their needs, and you won’t be able to make marketing tweaks that can help your business gain leverage.

To simplify, in SMM, you get what you give. You listen to understand. You listen to amplify your brand’s voice. Do so proactively and your audience will sooner or later do the marketing for you by sharing/retweeting your posts on their own feed.

4)    Use Social Media Marketing Tools

How is your campaign doing so far? Is it reaching the right audience? Are you getting the level of engagement you first targeted?

Social media analytics tools accurately measure the success of your campaign. Use these to your advantage by looking for areas for improvement and making adjustments where possible.

Social media marketing is an ocean of possibilities. But instead of trying to catch the biggest fish with a net, you can use digital tools to guide you through creating ads that work for your brand. Maximize these tools and you’ll be staring at your goals at the nearest horizon.