There are many myths that surround the use of social media marketing, from how much of a return on investment you can expect from it, to how your company should be using it.
Here’s five of the most common misunderstandings that affect the value of social.
Social media can’t drive salesYour social media channels are not just a big sound board for you to shout about how great you are. If used properly it can definitely be used to lead to more sales.
When creating your social media content strategy, consider what kind of content will be meaningful, valuable for your target audience and what will be likely to lead to a social exchange rather than focusing on pushing your sales message.
Don’t be afraid to be personable on your social channels as well — no one wants to talk to a faceless brand with no personality. This will just lead to any followers you do have overlooking your content and result in your engagement rates dropping.
Likes and followers are the best metrics to trackYes, the amount of likes and followers you have on your social networks are clearly important, as you do need an audience, but these are also vanity metrics. The most important metric you can rely on is the engagement rate of your content.
Each channel has its own engagement rate benchmarks that can help you track how well your content is performing by looking at how many of the people that were shown your content interacted with it, which will give you a good understanding of what your audience finds interesting and what they don’t. This will also give you a better understanding of who your audience is and how you should be speaking to them.
By focusing on the engagement metrics rather than the audience size you will hopefully be able to create a higher quality audience that will be more likely to be within your target market.
Facebook will then use engagement metrics to decide how relevant your audience finds your page, which will in turn affect the ‘reach’ of your content — the better the engagement, the higher your content will be judged by its Edgerank algorithm, which will allow more of your fans to see it.
If you’re going to do social you need to be on every channelWhen deciding whether social media marketing will work for your business, you need to consider where your target audience is likely to spend their time. Depending on their demographics and the service or product you provide will determine the channels you should focus your efforts on.
However, you must also consider the resources you have available. Looking after multiple networks will take time, so if your resources are limited focus your efforts on one or two channels where you can then create a consistently active profile instead. An outdated and unloved social media profile could end up causing more harm than not being there at all.
Social media marketing is an independent strategyIf you keep your social media marketing separate from the rest of your brand strategy you will almost definitely see an inconsistency in your brand message. And if your brand message is confusing, how will this affect the way your customers see and interact with you?
By aligning your marketing strategy across all channels, you will be in a much better position to create a strong content strategy, which will help you to put out much more interesting and meaningful posts to your fans. If you website is not up to scratch and the user journey is poor, your users will just bounce — no matter how good your social media campaigns are.
Social doesn’t drive bottom line results
When social media marketing is done right, it can be a great tool to help drive conversions for your business. In fact, 45% of marketers using social media have noted that social media has provided a below average cost-per-lead compared with other marketing channels.
If your company has fallen victim to any of the above misconceptions, now’s your chance to pull your social media back from the brink and see how it can really improve your overall marketing strategy.