Digital marketing can be confusing. SEO? PPC? Social media? What are these things and what can they do for your business? This is the first blog post in a series exploring the different elements of digital marketing, how they work, and what you can do to take advantage of them. This series is meant to help you understand the different aspects of digital marketing and how you can use them to market your business effectively.
We begin with one of the easiest forms of digital marketing, social media. We wanted to start here because (other than paid ads) social media doesn’t cost you anything. The only investment you have to make is time. We have reviewed all of the major social media platforms and have determined the pros and cons of each one. This list will help you determine where you should be focusing your own social media efforts.
- Visually Oriented With Stylized Images
- Display Images Of Your Products
- Live Video Can Engage Your Audience For Events
- Can Help Boost Your eCommerce With The ‘Shop Now’ Feature
- Different Features Allows You To Tell A Story
- Facebook Integration
- Image Only Content
- Typically Only Accessed On Mobile Devices
- Feed Is Not Chronologically Ordered
Instagram is good platform to use if you have a very visual brand. Industries that perform well on Instagram include fashion, makeup, hair, food, and shops that sell niche items. However, because this platform relies on images more than words, you have to make sure your images stand out and speak to your consumers. Perhaps best of all, you can integrate your posts to link to an eCommerce site and have your user engagement turn into sales in a matter of minutes.
In Nike Lab’s case, they are creating meaningful ads to their users by staying within the same look and feel for the audience that they are trying to reach. Even though they are a sub-section of Nike’s main Instagram, they still have more than a million subscribers. While Nike is obviously a larger brand, your small business can still learn a lot from their practices on Instagram.
- Helps Drive Traffic To Your Website
- Visually Oriented
- Easy To Share Content
- Effective If Your Target Audience Is Engaged
- Heavily Relies On Audience
- Very Little Control Once Your Pins Are Repinned
Like Instagram, Pinterest is visual, which can be great if your business is a visual brand. It is also good for driving people to your website, whereas people won’t leave Instagram to engage with the content that you produce. Another thing to consider when you share content on Pinterest is that people can easily change the captions and links on your Pins, so you’ll want to focus on conversions from the Pins rather than getting as many re-Pins as possible.
One brand that uses Pinterest very well is Etsy. They use their own users photos to create boards for a variety of unique goods. From fashion to pets to weddings and even recipes. They have created boards that captivate their audience.
- Wider Target Audience on FB
- Variety of Types of Posts to Engage Users
- Low Cost of Paid Advertising
- Ability to A/B test
- Strong Analytics
- Constantly Changing
- Algorithm Encourages Paid Advertising & Less on Organic Posts
- Facebook is Targeted by More Businesses
Facebook is a platform that has been used for advertising for a while now. Facebook is unique because it allows you to create multiple kinds of posts that you may otherwise be limited in other social platforms. You can post an event, an image, simple text, videos, and with all of these creatively integrate all of them. While organically advertising used to be easy to do on Facebook, the algorithm has changed a bit, making it harder for brands to be seen. If you are willing to pay to advertise, however, you won’t have to pay too much as Facebook advertising is quite cheap.
Arby’s has an amazing Facebook strategy. Every post that they make is catered to their audience. They create photos and short videos with pop culture references paired with one of their food offerings. If they aren’t making direct references, they are blatantly bragging about how much they like their own food (in it’s taste, quality, presentation, etc.). It positively engages their audience on social media and simultaneously makes people hungry for their food.
- Quick & Easy Posts
- Images & Text Can Be Used Together or Separately
- Increased Visibility of Posts With Hashtags
- Live Video via Periscope Integration
- Recent Changes to Timeline
- User Growth Has Declined
- Can Require A Lot of Attention Depending on Brand Size
It can be a tough decision to determine whether or not Twitter is a good platform to use for your business. Worst case scenario, it doesn’t hurt to at least have your brand’s Twitter hooked up to your other social media profiles.
There are many ways brands have benefited from Twitter. Nintendo of America is an example of great Twitter strategy. Not only do they make great use of Twitter’s features, but they also use strategies to update fans on the latest Nintendo news.
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) May 25, 2017
- Campaigns Are Easy To Set Up
- Easy To Use Platform
- Specific Audience
- Provide Company Updates
- Mostly Used For B2B (Business To Business) Marketing
- Not A Platform For Advertising
LinkedIn is great for letting your consumers see how your company is growing, and is great for if you ever need to post job openings. You can also post any blog or news updates on your brand’s LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is best suited for trying to engage other businesses in what you have to offer, whether that is a helpful blog post (just like this one) or giving them insight into how you do business.
Microsoft uses LinkedIn very well. They post insights from their teams that you likely would not see on their Facebook or Twitter pages. They also have multiple pages to post unique content for multiple uses (Office, Visual Studio, Skype for Business, Training & Certification, etc.). This strategy has allowed them to engage with their professional audience in a more meaningful way.
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Although most of these brands are high-end and large, you can still take notes from their success for your small business. Social media can be a powerful tool that can help grow your brand, if done right.
Are you ready to jump start your social digital marketing campaign, but don’t know where to start? Contact us! Our marketing team can help get you on the right track (and can even run your campaigns for you).