As we know, marketing is an ever-changing field that requires you to be dynamic and responsive to what strategies are working for your company at any given time. That being said, social media has become one of the most important parts of word-of-mouth marketing (WOM) for many companies.
It’s not just about posting a picture or two and calling it a day, nor is it only about listening to feedback from potential customers. Companies need to be active on all types of social media sites if they want to see true success with WOM campaigns.
In this article, I will go into more detail about the different ways brands can use social media to promote their products. You will also learn some easy tips and tricks to effectively use these tools for your business.
What is social media?
When we refer to social media, what we mean are things such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and all other sites where people share their experiences via comments, posts, and videos. These websites function with the concept of having communities – groups of individuals who exchange information and content with one another.
The common term for this type of community is a forum, so some examples of forums include talk show programs like Oprah or Morning Shows like CBS’s “This Morning.” There are also question-and-answer formats that have become very popular, such as Yahoo! Answers or Ask Me Anything (AMA) events which occur at live conferences.
These types of conversations typically begin with someone asking a question and then everyone else responds by giving their opinion or sharing experiences related to the topic. In these settings, there is an audience watching and listening, which makes it more appealing than if you were just talking to yourself.
It is important to note that not every conversation happens around a question/answer format. Some topics can be discussed as narratives, which means telling your story about something. This could be anything from discussing how you grew up and what inspired you to do certain things to tell us about the latest movie you saw.
By creating a space to connect with others and learn about them, word-of-mouth marketing is created through social media.
What are the different types of social media?
There are several different types of social media sites, including forums, groups, blogs, chat, and video or interactive platforms. Almost every major city has at least one forum where residents can go to talk about their neighborhoods, find out which restaurants are worth a try, and get some tips and tricks for taking care of their houses.
Older generations often use online communities to connect with other people their age who share similar experiences and interests. Many companies make use of these community resources to promote their products by answering questions and/or giving away discounts or coupons.
Virtual chats allow two or more individuals to communicate virtually through typing messages and comments. This type of communication is very personal as you do not have to worry about what kind of expression you want to read before deciding whether to respond or not.
What are the different platforms?
As we have seen, one of the most important functions of social media is to create an audience that connects with your business or product. Your business needs this connection for many reasons: to increase website traffic, boost sales, find new customers, and build trust in yourself as well as others.
With the rise of the internet and mobile technology, there are now almost limitless ways to connect with people. Gone are the days when you could only advertise through television, radio, and print publications.
Now anyone can broadcast what they want to other people via blogs, YouTubers, Instagram, and all sorts of apps. It is up to you which ones will work best for your business and how much money you want to invest in them.
But no matter what platform you choose, make sure it is at least partially focused on helping people find information and do things they want to do! Creating a space where people feel comfortable coming to share their experiences can be a powerful tool in getting word-of-mouth marketing going.
How can you use social media to promote your business?
Having a presence on all the major social networking sites is a good place to start when investing in marketing strategies for your business. It’s also important to be active with these sites, particularly using the appropriate tools.
By being actively involved in the community, your followers will grow and people who know you well may share valuable information about your products or services.
This is what happens when someone else mentions you or something you have done, it becomes word-of-mouth advertising. And since they are mentioning you, they must like what you do!
There are many ways to benefit from social media by promoting your product or service. You should consider creating content to draw attention, connect with others, gather feedback, and build trust.
Some of the most powerful applications of social media go way beyond just marketing, though. People use them to communicate and find help, including through giving and receiving advice and knowledge.
What are tips for social media marketing?
Developing your online presence is not a one-and-done activity, it’s an ongoing process that requires consistency and attention to detail. Just because you put up a picture or article doesn’t mean people will notice it!
To ensure your hard work pays off, you have to keep posting them and changing things around to make sure people see all of your content.
There are several ways to organize and structure your social accounts, so choose the ones that feel most comfortable to you. Some people start with Instagram first and then move on to Facebook, while others begin with Twitter before branching out into the rest.
Whatever method works best for you, stay within yours consistently! If you overstuff one area, someone else can become less engaged with you and your brand. Take a look at what other brands are doing and pick some ideas from those.
What are the challenges of social media marketing?
One challenge that many business owners face is finding the right mix of tools for their company’s success. Some companies feel overwhelmed by all of the different apps, platforms, and technology needed to maximize engagement and reach.
There are several reasons why this is the case. For one, not every person uses the same app or software platform as your target audience does.
For example, while most people use Facebook to connect with friends and family, not everyone does. Or maybe someone has special features like voice messaging or private groups that you don’t have yet.
It’s also common to find that some people prefer using Google or Yahoo! products instead of Microsoft ones. This can be because they’re more familiar with them, or because they work better for their specific needs.
By having so many options it can become difficult to know which ones will help you achieve your goals. It also raises the bar for what level of quality each tool possesses since there are no standards.
You could end up investing time and resources into something that doesn’t work very well if there’s nothing behind it beyond fancy looks and cool logos.
What should you do to gain customer trust?
As mentioned before, creating an online presence is almost a must these days for anyone that wants to reach out to others and grow their business. With the explosion of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, it has become easy to spread your message and expose yourself to new eyes.
But what most people don’t realize is that just because you posted a picture or link doesn’t mean someone will look at it! It takes time to build up this reputation, and with all of the distractions in our lives, spending time focusing only on your company can be tricky.
That’s where word-of-mouth marketing comes into play. People are always sharing information about the products and services they use and how effective they were. If you listen and watch, you’ll probably find lots of tips and tricks along with some great stories, but none of that would matter if nobody knew about them.
What should you post on social media?
Developing your social media strategy is more than just choosing from the various platforms, it’s about picking which content to share on each platform.
You can use what we call “content marketing strategies” through these channels. These are things like posting pictures or videos of yourself or your business, promoting other people’s products and services, creating articles and blogs focused on product information and tips, etc.
But aside from those content types, two additional ones can play an important role in developing your reputation as a trustworthy source and generating new leads for your business.
These are referring to yourself as “social” (as in, someone who interacts with others) and being “verifiable” (as in, you can find sources confirming your existence). By using tools such as Google+, YouTube, and Facebook, potential customers can research your company and determine if it’s a credible one.