On December 1, 2016, we kicked off a countdown to the 2017 New Year by bringing you a daily Marketing Tip of the Day. Every day, we’ll post a new tip, favorite tool or piece of advice on social media to help you in your marketing efforts. We’ll update this blog every Thursday with a mashup of the latest tips. Let’s finish 2016 off strong and ring in the new year ready to go! Consider it our holiday gift to you!
The Rival IQ Team
Check out this video for the last week’s Marketing Tips from Rival IQ! Explore the rest below!
Have a Consistent Message
You’ve got a brand voice, right? So use it. You want your social posts to sound like they came from the same person – your brand. Your audience will notice if you suddenly shift and start screaming or making crass jokes. Stick to the voice your audience knows and loves.
Social channels have become the first stop for breaking news. Your audience is conversing on every topic under the sun. When there’s a conversation that relates to your audience, tap into it. Of course, it’s critical to stay relevant. But even seemingly unrelated brands can jump in. Snowmaggedon about to rear its ugly head? That resort in the warm and sunny south sounds good.
Don’t Forget Humor
No matter your brand voice, humor should be a component. Successful brands find ways to balance humor with their brand, even for the most serious brands (think hospitals and nonprofits). Your audience will appreciate the relevant humor and it’ll make your day managing social channels more enjoyable.
Conduct a Social Audit
Before jumping in head-first to tackling a social media strategy remodel, run a social media audit of your current social media presence. Take a look at what you and your competitors are doing. By watching where and how your competitors are gaining traction, you can make better decisions about which steps you should take next in improving your social media strategy.
Favorite Marketers Design Tool: Canva
Not all marketers are designers. We know that first-hand. A tool we use for all of our blog posts and many of our social posts is Canva. Its drag-and-drop system, professional layouts, and templates enable anyone to become a designer on the fly. My favorite feature is the Magic Resize feature so your one design is instantly resized to fit the social channels of your choice for quicker social management.
Boost Posts, but not all of them…
Trying to figure out which posts to boost? Start with those posts that are already getting good engagement rates. If all of your content has great engagement, look specifically at number of shares. A high number of shares or retweets indicate that your audience is already enjoying that piece of content enough to share it with other they think will enjoy it too. Odds are, that more than just your followers are going to find this content compelling as well.
Personalize Whenever Possible
It’s become common practice to personalize consumers names into emails, but it’s a challenge to personalize in other marketing practices. Use your customer data to leverage granular targeting on social media channels like Facebook and LinkedIn to target your audience by their interests, profession or other demographics.
Track Absolutely Everything
Impressions and engagement rates aren’t the only metrics you should be measuring in regards to your social media posts. Use UTMs (or Urchin Tracking Modules) or URL shorteners, like Bitly, to track traffic from each specific social post to your website or landing page. This way, you can actually tie revenue and measure success down to the social post.
Join a Community, or two, or three…
If you’re looking for a better way to understand and speak to your audience, consider joining different online communities to find out what other professionals are doing and what issues your customers are experiencing. Being a part of an online community (or two) can give you critical insight into who your audience is and what they want.
Start with the Hook
The title you use in any piece of content to hook them is crucial to increasing engagement. Give them just enough information to catch their attention and make them want to read more.
When in doubt, try it out!
Try mixing up the content you’re posting on your social channels so your message doesn’t get stale. Feel free to experiment and A/B test with new social content, media types (like live video or .gifs) or joining a new social media channel.
Leverage your social media channels to give your most loyal fans, followers and customers a shout-out! Retaining your loyal customers is easily overlooked, but the truth of the matter is that retaining customers is easier and way cheaper than finding new customers. Take the time to incorporate rewarding loyalty and retention into your social marketing strategy.
Use Data to Take Action
Follow your numbers! Use the data in your reports to make data-driven decisions that will improve your metrics and social strategy. Check out these marketing tools to help you make better data-driven marketing decisions.
When in doubt, use Kittens!
Social media is about connecting with your audience and using emotion is incredibly effective. People love animals, so use them to connect with your audience and find that spike in social post engagement. Read about the many ways you can use psychology to capture attention, drive engagement leveraging emotion, and increase shares on social media.
Favorite Marketing Tool: HARO (Help A Reporter Out)
Having a PR agency can be a luxury for many brands, with Help a Reporter Out (HARO) you’re an email away from relevant journalists. By signing up for HARO, you’ll have daily opportunities for media coverage. HARO segments by industry, so you’ll get the most relevant requests to your inbox 3 times a day.
Create a Social Calendar, but…
Create a social media calendar, but don’t be afraid to change it! A social calendar will prevent last minute post scrambles and help keep your content strategy aligned with your social campaigns. Pay attention to breaking news, trends and timely content to sprinkle in as it comes up too.
Engage your Employees
Your employees are one of your most valuable assets. Leverage employees to help further your social reach by encouraging them to share and like your posts. Many hands make light work.
Repurpose your Content
Repurposing content is a marketers’ best-kept secret! If you find yourself in a content slump, look to your content archives for inspiration, because you’re sitting on a gold mine! If you’ve written five different blogs on one topic, consider mashing them up into an eBook or whitepaper. Take your most viewed video on YouTube and cut it into bite-sized video clips and post them on social media. The possibilities are endless, and you’ll save lots of time.
Don’t forget your Keywords
Remember your keywords when you’re creating content. Let your keywords help drive your content strategy to align your SEO and content strategies. Consistently using your keywords will increase your ranking when potential customers search for you. Refrain from littering your content with keywords, but don’t forget to use them.
Steal like an Artist
Watch what your competitors are doing for a couple reasons. The first is so you’re in the know on the competitive front. The second is to learn what content works the easy way – by watching what content does and doesn’t resonate with your audience.
The 80/20 Rule
The 80/20 rule applies to your social marketing posts as much as it does business. 20% of your content should be promotional, and 80% should be entertaining, informative, and trending content primarily for increasing engagement.
Join a Community, or two, or three…
If you’re looking for a better way to speak to your audience, consider joining different online communities to find out what other professionals are doing and what issues your customers are experiencing.
Follow the Fear
Fear is a powerful emotion, which is why so many marketers use fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) to make customers stop, think and change their behavior. Use fear to drive someone to action by proving to the consumer that they
1. Are likely to be affected by something
2. When it affects them, it will be painful
3. You have the ability to avoid this pain
Prioritize Quality over Quantity
Prioritize Quality over Quantity. Get to know your audience to understand the type of content they enjoy so you can spend your time finding quality content to share with them. Otherwise, you’ll be spinning your wheels posting content at random in hopes that something will stick. To start, take a look at the content you’ve already posted and identify the most engaging pieces. Create and curate similar content to increase engagement.
Be Efficient. Schedule your Social
When you’re in charge of social media at your organization, you realize how much of a time-suck posting across multiple channels becomes. Consider using scheduling tools, like Buffer, to schedule out your social posts to be more time-efficient. You can plan content out weeks, even months in advance allowing you to free up the rest of your work week.
There’s no such thing as a ‘best time’ to post
There’s no such thing as a ‘best time’ to post on social media. Your audience is unique to your industry, which means the social channels and times they’re most active and engaging are probably different than the general population you find referenced in blogs and articles across the internet. As you gain followers, track when they’re most active and adjust your posting times to them.
Embrace the Emoji
Embrace the emoji! Try using emoji’s in email headlines, hashtags and social posts to communicate emotions and ideas. You may be surprised at how it affects open rates and engagement. 😉
Use Hashtags, but not too many!
Using hashtags are not optional on Instagram and Twitter! Hashtags help you grow your audience, increase engagement and optimize your social media strategy. The magic number of hashtags to use is seven. It’s just enough so you’re not leaving reach on the table without coming off as spammy.