Introduction to Social Media Marketing
Social Media has emerged as a powerful revolution in the past decade or so. Social media has changed the way we socialize with others, manage our businesses, and engage in political or current affairs. There are approx. 3.2 billion social media users worldwide and approx. 353 million social media users in India.
Social Media Marketing is referred to as the use of different social media platforms to connect with your target audience to build your brand, drive website traffic, and increase leads or sales. It includes activities like creating content to promote your business or products on various social media channels.
Social Media Platforms
There are many social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc where you can promote your business or products using social media marketing techniques.
Facebook is the most used social media platform in India with 84.94% users having their profile created on it. It is followed by Instagram (6.32%), YouTube (2.61%), Pinterest (3.35%), Twitter (2.58%) and LinkedIn (0.07%). The last few years have been fascinating for Indian Social Media. For marketers, advertisers, and brands, this presents huge opportunities to experiment with social media as a key marketing communications platform.
Facebook is the most used social media platform and it has users of all age demographics. Therefore, making it one of the most diverse social media platforms.
Industry Type: B2C
Primary Uses– Driving sales and generating leads, brand awareness, engagement.
Instagram is the second most used social media platform and it consists of a younger audience as compared to others.
Industry Type: B2C
Primary Uses– Brand awareness, sales, and generating leads, engagement.
Twitter is a social media and online news platform where people communicate in short messages, called tweets.
Industry Type: B2B and B2C
Primary Uses– Brand awareness, sales, and generating leads, customer service.
LinkedIn is a social media platform that adheres to professionals.
Industry Type: B2B
Primary Uses– Building professional networks, employment marketing, conversions and leads generation.
YouTube is an online video-sharing platform and the second-most used social media platform but it’s not for everyone.
Industry Type: B2C
Primary Uses: Provide solutions to the customers, Brand awareness, Entertainment.
Pinterest is an excellent social media platform which helps in increasing link back to your website. It results in driving traffic to your website. It is a popular platform for those looking for inspiration on fashion, accessories, cooking.
Industry Type: B2C
Primary Uses- Website traffic, brand awareness, visual advertising.
WhatsApp Business (Special Mention)
WhatsApp Business has currently become a hot topic as businesses have shown keen interest in using it. WhatsApp has been used by businesses for a long time to promote their brand. But now it can be done on a separate application by providing your own business’s number, website, email id, and address.
Industry Type: B2C
Primary Uses– Customer support, customer communication, promotion, and marketing.
Benefits of Social Media Marketing
1. Increased Brand Awareness and Constructive Brand Recognition
Social media is used by approx. 3.2 billion users all across the globe which makes it effective for the brand itself to promote its products or services online and target customers directly. Implementation of the correct social media marketing strategy leads to effective brand recognition and it also helps in engaging with a broad audience of potential consumers. Thus, resulting in bringing more website traffic.
Creating a unique social media page for your business on various social media channels is the first step. You have to make sure that the profile picture and the cover picture must be appealing. After that, you can get your family, employees to like and share those pages thus resulting in better reach. This is one of the benefits of social media marketing.
Here is a look at ZOMATO’S Facebook Page. It depicts how the brand has an appealing cover photo and at the same time, the brand’s logo is present on both the cover and profile pictures.
2. Direct Connection with Customers and Increased Brand Loyalty
By creating your own brand’s social media profiles and engaging with your potential customers makes the brand more humanized. The customer’s feedback on various posts can help the brand to work more effectively. The marketers can also learn about what their potential consumers want or are talking about. It can help the brand to plan its social media marketing strategies accordingly.
While dealing with customers directly and solving their problems, you earn the trust of the customers. The various social media tools will help you look into the behavioral preferences of your customers and then you can work on it. The higher your brand reviews, the more you can get new customers to be on board with your offers.
Engaging with your potential customers directly on your social media pages, you influence them to become more loyal.
Here is a look at STARBUCK’S’s way of engaging with the audience thus resulting in brand loyalty.
3. Boost Conversion Rate
The increase in the visibility of your brand results in more conversions. The followers of your page trust your brand which in turn results in them visiting your website to explore what you have to offer.
When you post content that resonates with your audience, you help your brand to generate result-oriented conversions for your brand. You just have to work on creating an effective social media strategy and the rest will follow suit.
4. Economical or Cheaper
Social media marketing is way cheaper than traditional ways of marketing. Advertising your brand in newspapers or even on television incurs a huge cost while just creating a social media page and promoting your brand on it is completely free. If you want to use paid promotion methods then also the cost incurred is cheaper and more economical.
A simple post on your brand’s social media page can inform your potential customers about what you have to offer.
5. User-Generated Content
User-Generated Content (UGC) refers to any content that is created by the users rather than the brand itself. Content in the form of texts, videos, images, etc that users post helps the brand in many ways.
The users sometimes create content that is creative and adds value to the brand’s post. The brand shares such content on its own pages thus building a stronger connection with its customer base. This also helps in increasing brand awareness and boosting conversions at a rapid rate.
User-Generated Content is a powerful way a brand can grow in the market and have a base of loyal customers.
APPLE’S #ShotoniPhone campaign did wonders for the brand. The campaign was started in March 2015 by Apple after the launch of the iPhone 6. It depicted how powerful its camera is. The users then started creating content and wrote #ShotoniPhone as the content’s captions. It became a trend especially on Instagram and then Apple started posting the same content on their Instagram handle while tagging the user. The campaign though old is still popular and users to date continue to post the content with the same caption.
Social media is an excellent platform to promote your brand and grow your brand. Once you start exploring it you will learn many new ways to promote your brand by sitting just at your home. Social media marketing is one of the most important parts of digital marketing. It is the fastest-growing trend. So start working on it and achieve your goals. But make sure you don’t make any social media marketing mistakes while doing so.
The article was written by me because of the interest I have in digital marketing and how it fascinates me. I hope you like it and if you do, please share the article and kindly leave a comment in the comment section below.