Social media is crucial to the success of businesses today and this is no overstatement. It has revolutionized the traditional forms of marketing, selling products, customer interaction and the ways in which the corporate world works. As startups, it becomes even more imperative to leverage the power of social media to build a potential customer base, generate a side revenue and, eventually, make your startup a full-grown business.
The two things that a startup needs today to become successful is a great product and a greater social media marketing strategy. If you do have a great product or service to offer the audience, then social media is your goldmine.
When it comes to social media, one must remember that people come on social media to socialize, connect, and explore exciting and unique content. Also, with the boom in social networking platforms, more and more people are discovering new products online.
Social media users across platforms are always looking for a more personalized experience when they interact with a brand that they follow. Companies around the world have utilized this particular behavioral statistic to make a shift from the corporate, strictly professional and the faceless version of their brand to a more personal and interactive one.
As a startup, you can use this statistic to your advantage and channel the power of social media to grow your startup. The following are five top, proven, and rock-solid strategies to grow your startup using social media, which are actionable and will show results.
Build a Unique Brand Identity
Whether you are promoting on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, it is imperative to be consistent with your brand image. When people see a common brand image and theme across platforms, they are more likely to remember you subconsciously. And when people remember you, promotions are more likely to generate positive leads and conversions.
Regardless of which platform you are using as a part of your social media strategy, your audience should get transparent access to your brand. Create a unique visual aesthetic for your brand and be consistent with it, across platforms and all through your posts.
Also, succinctly tell your audience what you do, with whom you are associated, what products you sell or what kind of services you offer, how you will add value to their lives, and so on. All this builds your unique identity as a brand and creates a lasting impression on your audience.
Other ways to stay consistent across social media platforms is to use the same brand name and profile picture, add links to your website or ecommerce store, cross-link your social media channels, be consistent with the themes and color on your social media feed, and so on.
Feed Your Content, Optimize
At the end of the day, it’s all in the content. If you invest in good-quality content to put across for your audience, you will definitely see the results. Be it the visuals that you post, or the witty one-liners, be it your product launches or what you post in the Stories, with social media, there is absolutely no limit to how creative and innovative you can be.
The more compelling your content, the more leads it will generate – and it’s proven. You can get as creative as you want with your business profile on social media – be funny, witty, and engaging to attract new followers and retain your existing ones. For example, you can post live videos, memes, challenges, product teasers and use other creative ideas to sell.
Further, with social media, it is important not to be rigid. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram change their algorithms frequently. And this directly affects how your posts appear on the platforms. Therefore, it is important to track and analyze the insights. See what works and leverage that and remove what does not work. When you refine your strategy from time to time, you are also gaining access to newer audiences.
Build a Community
As mentioned above, people come to social media to socialize and connect. And given the billions of users already using various platforms, it is extremely likely that a community relevant to your brand already exists online. All you need to do is find them. As a startup that is just kick-starting its social media journey, your foremost goal should be to participate and engage on the various platforms to make your presence known to the people who will potentially be interested in your content.
One of the ways to do so is to engage with your target audience and also with the brands that they already follow. Once social media users begin to recognize you, however small in number they may be, then your focus should be to retain them and let them know that you value them.
Now although you can build a massive community of followers, say for Instagram, but even the best site to grow Instagram followers will not offer you the credibility that you can achieve for your startup by organically engaging with your audience. You can do so by commenting back, sharing user-generated content, offering exclusive discounts and offers, and more. This will ensure that your brand has its own close-knit community to begin with. In the future, these people can act like your brand ambassadors, thereby fueling your organic promotions.
80% Engagement, 20% Sales
Imagine seeing an Instagram feed full of products and promotional content. Chances are that you will never go back to that account again, because it simply does not add value for you. Now, as a startup on the other side of the spectrum, it is imperative to act on this insight and limit your product posts and promotional messages to 20% of your frequency of posting to social media.
This 80 – 20 rule goes a long way in building customer trust, retaining your existing customers, and attracting new, potential audiences. To grow your startup on social media, engagement is the key and there are many ways by which you can engage and keep your followers engaged. You can collaborate with influencers, feature your customers, allow reviews, share sneak peeks of your work day or workspace, and so on.
See What Your Competitors Are Up to
Believe it or not, your competitors are already on social media and chances are that they are leveraging it. Not only does it allow you to monitor their steps and strategies, but also it helps you learn and draw inspiration from them. From a visual that strikes to a unique promotional tweet, to a creative brief that you just cannot get over, social media can open up new avenues for your startup to venture in.
Plus, by doing so, you can identify target profiles of the audience who might be interested in your content and engage them. When you do your research, you can optimize your marketing strategy to eventually outwit your competitors and grow your startup.
As the famous saying goes, “Nothing kills a good product faster than bad marketing” and social media is precisely about this. Startups can harness the power of social media to grow their business, generate leads and conversions, and find potential customers. With social media, you do not just grow your business, but also you build a brand out of your business.
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