Creating valuable content is only half the content marketing battle. Now, you have to get people to it. One of the best tools to accomplish that goal? Social media.
But there’s a problem…
While it’s also one of the best, it's also one of the most confusing. With so many different options, which one should you use?
Social media marketing for dummies
Below, I’ll answer that question in a way both veterans and beginners can understand. Consider this guide “social media marketing for dummies.” I’ll cover the main platforms, what type of content you should share, and the type of audience that each one attracts.
When in doubt, start with Facebook. In December 2012, Facebook already had 1 billion active monthly users. Studies have shown that over 93% of all adults online are also on Facebook.
People come to Facebook to connect, socialize, catch up on what people and brands they care about are doing.
That means that Facebook is all about storytelling and connecting with your audience...but you have to stand out in a very competitive marketplace.
You need to create posts that are so interesting and eye-catching that you get people to click and comment.
What type of content should you share? BuzzSumo analyzed over 1 billion Facebook posts and here is what they recommend:
- Tell stories, especially inspirational ones, and especially your own. Who are you, and why should people care about you?
- Focus on images or videos paired with 50 characters or less of text. Ask questions of your fans, and comment on their responses.
- Use Facebook’s live video feature to get higher reach and engagement.
Twitter’s audience skews younger and more urban than other social media outlets. That doesn’t mean that only millennials use Twitter, but consult your buyer personas (option to link to earlier article) and think whether your prospective customers are likely to be on Twitter.
Twitter is ideal for conversation and banter. Think short, snappy, in-the-moment updates.
Use Twitter to personalize your brand or company with behind-the-scenes tidbits and share your point-of-view, but be careful to keep it professional.
Another great way to use it is to connect with other influencers and celebrities who you probably couldn’t reach otherwise.
Twitter lets you use images and videos, too, so take advantage of those if you plan to use this platform.
Finally, tweet often; as many as five times per day if you have enough original, high-quality content to merit that.
Are any of your prospective customers women, and especially moms? If you answered yes, then you need to be on Pinterest.
Pinterest is a fantasyland for gorgeous images of food, fashion, home renovation and decor ideas, and Pinterest users love to buy the products they discover.
A survey by Steelhouse showed that Pinterest users are 79% more likely to purchase something they spot on Pinterest than on Facebook.
If you’re going to use Pinterest, you have to post striking, nearly stunning, images.
Everything you share on Pinterest will have to link back to a source on your website, which is awesome for you because if you pin gorgeous images of your product, when people click they will be directed to a blog post or landing page on your website.
Think of your product like a collector’s item. Showcase it through beautiful photos on Pinterest, and watch the traffic roll in to your website.
One of the new social media giants, Instagram boasts over 200 million monthly active users, with 60 million photos shared per day.
This visual platform lets you share artsy, beautiful photos and videos easily. It’s similar to Pinterest: the fashion, food, and home decor markets reign supreme on Instagram.
Use hashtags liberally, and share the most evocative, gorgeous photos that you have.
The audience is younger than Facebook or Pinterest, so if you’re going for millennials or the next generation of social media users, you need to be on Instagram.
Next steps for content marketing promotional strategies
I’ve covered four of the most popular platforms in this short guide to social media marketing for dummies, but websites like Social Media Examiner can guide you through the finer points of marketing on specific platforms.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, focus on one platform to start. You’ll quickly see how much social media can help you reach prospective customers and draw them to your website.
Want to learn more about how to create valuable content and draw people to it? Download the complete guide by entering your information below.