It may or may not be your cup of tea, but social media is an inescapable fact of life for SMEs in 2021. Even before the outbreak of COVID-19 and its crippling effects, social media has played a pivotal role in the growth of small businesses and e-commerce brands, giving them a platform to engage consumers, generate leads, and improve sales numbers. In fact, more than 75% of South African companies have reported positive returns from an increase in social media activity, with only 1 in 20 seeing no improvement at all.
The aspect of social proof has become increasingly vital in an era of online shopping and building the necessary trust to thrive in the digital space. Hellopeter is at the forefront of providing this trust using reviews to leverage customer experiences in a way that lets your market know you mean business. So how does social media fit into that vision? Let’s take a look at what you’ll need to connect, communicate and grow.
As with any other marketing strategy, you need to know who you’re talking to, what you want to say, and how you’ll go about saying it in a way that resonates with prospective consumers. If you own or are heavily involved in a growing business, you’ll naturally have a deeper understanding of who these people are and why you think they should choose you. But it also means you don’t have time to answer every single query or reply to every comment.
So you need to be S.M.A.R.T., meaning you should aim for goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time Sensitive. Use your intimate knowledge of your audience to create ‘personas’ of the people you want to target with your messaging.
Once you’ve determined your audience and goals, take a look at what your competitors are doing. How often do they post? What type of content are they putting out? Do they interact with their followers directly, and to what effect? If it makes sense for them, there’s a good chance it’ll make sense for you as well.
Before you even decide which social platforms to pursue, it’s always prudent to do a quick audit of which ones you’re currently using and how well they’re performing. Keep that information to hand so you can stay on top of any shifts in engagement and interaction. There’s no point in dedicating time and energy to platforms that your audience doesn’t use.
You should be able to tell quite quickly where your resources are best spent, and each platform has its quirks in terms of its demographics and the type of content they want to see. For example, suppose your business is heavily product-focused. In that case, you’re better off choosing a platform like Instagram or Facebook that lends itself to more visually driven content where you can create a catalogue of imagery showing them off.
This is especially true for e-commerce businesses, and Instagram has a host of functions that can put you front and centre. If your business is service-oriented and dependent on feedback, conversation, and open lines of communication, Twitter would be a far better fit.
Aside from being relevant and timely, it needs to be stimulating. Nobody wants to scroll a timeline of endlessly samey or bland content. It’s a pitfall that many businesses fall into, and once you’re in there, it’s notoriously difficult to extricate yourself.
Switch up the perspective. The key here is to ask yourself a straightforward question: ‘Is what I’m posting bringing value to my audience?’. Is it something that you yourself would find interesting, exciting, or insightful? If the answer is no, it’s better not to say anything at all. Create a blend of unique content that speaks directly to your audience strategically and blend it with sharing third party content that you think will move the needle or is in alignment with your ‘voice.’
There’s no hard and fast rule about how often you should be posting, but the trick is to find the sweet spot between trying too hard and regularly contributing to the two-way value street of social media engagement. But by planning accordingly and enlisting the help of any of the major social media management tools like Hubspot, Hootsuite, or Sprout, you can schedule posts ahead of time while gathering super helpful analytics about your audience.
Adding the power of Hellopeter reviews to your strategy and integrating them into your marketing mix will not only build trust in your brand but show consumers you’re serious about providing quality experiences that will keep them coming back for more. Create your free account today and back your social media presence with South Africa’s most reputable review platform.