Have you ever received a gift, and you're not quite sure what it is or what it does? You unwrap it, rip into the box, and toss all the tissue paper aside only to come face-to-face with a ... What is it exactly? How are you supposed to use it, and by the way, why in the world would I even want it?
That is how social media can feel to many of us. We are clueless about what it is, how to use it, and why we should even set our hearts on it. All we honestly know about social media is that everyone is doing it. The world seems to like it and embrace it. So, maybe that's enough to pencil it in on our wish list. Right?
Here to help us untangle some of the mysteries social media holds is Mary Jewett, owner of Brand Social Marketing. We asked her a few questions to help diminish the perplexity and heartburn that social media can cause.
Can you define what social media truly is? Social media is a way to share images, videos, ideas, and thoughts through instantaneous digital communication. It allows for building relationships and getting to know people without ever meeting them face to face. It is your way of inviting your audience into a fun, engaging, and close-knitted relationship with your brand.
So, what in the world does social media have to do with marketing? Social media allows you to reach your potential or ideal customers and target them through their interests. It enables you to get your brand out in front of an audience who may otherwise have not known of your brand. Social media gives you the ability to advertise where they spend most of their time—online.
What parts and pieces of marketing are influenced by and impacted by social media? Social media gives us the ability to get to know our customers and what they're looking for in a service or product. It is an organic way to conduct audience research. The more followers engage, the more they share about themselves as it relates to your brand, products, and services.
What goes into formulating a solid social media strategy? A strong social media strategy emphasizes building a relationship with your audience before selling to them. Letting them see into the details of your business, who you are, and why you do what you do. It involves a consistent post strategy that answers your audience's most important questions about your industry or business. And it consists of regularly engaging with your audience on the platform(s).
What are some current misconceptions about social media you feel are important to debunk, and why? One of the biggest misconceptions about social media pertains to posting frequency. Most believe you have to post daily or even multiple times per day to make it work. Having a robust content strategy and posting quality, educational, or entertaining content will always win over the frequency. The other misconception is that your business page should be all business. This is simply not the case. People buy from people, so it's important to add personality to your pages to establish a connection with your audience. And last, social media can't live on its own. Your social media gives your customers instant access to your website. It ties into Google, so it's essential that ALL areas of online marketing, not just social media, be focused on. They all go hand in hand!
If you have one wish for how social media is seen and treated differently, what would be that wish? I wish businesses would focus MORE on social media. Businesses often shy away from it because they don't have the time to put into it or are using older traditional marketing methods such as print ads and mailers. But social media gives you access to so many people so quickly that it is where businesses should actually look to spend MORE effort than they currently do. If I'm looking to get a service done, the first place I go to research is online.
Great insights, Mary! Hopefully, this helps you welcome the gift of social media with open arms and begin to answer your questions around its use case. Unwrap with joy this remarkable marketing solution. It comes with instructions. So, read through, take the first step, and await what unfolds!
Learn more about social media and review our other blogs on the topic!