Small businesses are often faced with budget constraints when it comes to marketing campaigns. If you own a small business, you may admire big brands that are successful on social media.
Even if your business is small, you can use simple strategies to develop an effective social media management campaign. You can learn from the big brands and adopt their strategies across your favorite social media channels.
Here are some big brand social media strategies you can adopt for your small business.
1. Create a budget
Many big brands often have problems getting personal with the target audience and this hurts their sales. Their brands can be trusted but they lack authenticity.
As a small business, you can beat the large, recognized brand because you can easily get personal and real. Purina adopted a “trust” campaign to be authentic and build customer trust and this enabled them to boost sales.
A marketing strategy must influence the social media actions you take. When your budget is limited, you may experience difficulties planning cash flows and creating realistic sales targets.
Some brands spend a lot of money on social media campaigns and others spend less and they all attain their marketing goals. Rather than focusing on search engine optimization and content creation, move a step further and have a social media business plan where you set aside some money for business expansion and marketing campaign.
You can consider self-funding, venture capital, and grants to raise funds for your business. Self-funding, which means borrowing from family and friends, is relatively cheap compared to other financing methods.
Spend the little you have well by defining your target audience. Your main focus should be on building a brand reputation to encourage buying and retain customers in the long-run. A platform that has a culture can work for you well when your resources are limited.
2. Use influencer marketing
Influencer marketing is a great trend because it acts as a form of social proof. Think about how Starbucks has used influencer marketing in its Frappuccino summer campaigns to reach new customers.
Before identifying influencers, set your campaign goals. Whether you want to engage in a short-term brand awareness campaign or you are seeking a long-term partnership, you need to identify what you want to achieve. Your goal could be to get more social media followers, build a stronger community or make more sales.
It is easy to find influencers for your small business. This begins by using special tools to identify those who are in your niche. After finding influencers, interact with them frequently using the content they share on their social media pages. Cultivate a relationship with them and approach them to participate in your marketing campaign.
Once you identify and engage your influencers, pay attention to the social media comments. If you are seeking influencer collaboration, consider someone who is already engaging or interested in your brand. This may help your social media efforts.
Check out the comments that stand out on your social media platforms and take note of their impact. If you see someone sharing or getting excited about a product launch, that is an indication that your brand is being recognized.
3. Build brand advocates
CA Technologies, an American multinational corporation, had powerful brand advocates as employees. The company used them to develop a social media marketing campaign and thus yielded amazing results.
You can build brand advocates for your small business by setting up a SocialU. SocialU is a social media enabled training program aimed at empowering employees to be active in social media. This platform can teach your employees to become your brand advocates.
Large companies may have more employees than you, but this should not hinder you from achieving your social media marketing goals through brand advocacy. Start by building a solid workplace culture that touches the employees day to day work.
Brand advocacy leaders are relevant, innovative, inspiring, credible, engaging, and community-centric. If your business is largely community-based such as event organizing, you can identify employees who are most active on social media and communicate guidelines and train them to be your brand advocates.
If you are in the wedding business, you may want to build a strategy that can allow your advocates to showcase the styles and modern wedding trends that can attract customers. They can create posts regarding wedding vendors such as registries, venues, dresses, photographers, decorations, cakes, and so on. You should also track your metrics to determine how people are responding to your brand.
4. Adopt user-generated content
The automobile company, BMW, adopts the hashtag #BMW Repost to share content on social media featuring some proud BMW owners. BMW gets free advertising and showcases the features on their car models to potential customers.
Create an avenue to allow your customers to brag about your products. To create user-generated content, you don’t need to deal with luxury products. You also don’t need a big budget or a large market share. The increased visibility and engagement can make your content impactful.
You can adopt-user generated content by encouraging users to leave reviews after visiting your social media pages and then use the reviews as content. You can motivate your customers to write reviews about the brand by giving them reward points, coupons, or gift cards.
Send them emails and use subject lines with incentive keywords to get more reviews. Negative reviews can be an opportunity to earn customer trust. Be honest and respond to all the customers personally to show that you care about their feedback. Positive and negative feedback is crucial to brand authenticity.
You can also repost photos and videos that are shared by your fans or create a video contest that you can use as content. User-generated videos are easier to share and have the potential to go viral.
5. Social for customer service
Some large brands may not always be good in marketing. Nike is concerned with selling a lifestyle and attitude. They are good at giving support to their customers, especially on Twitter. Nike provides support in English, French, Dutch, German, Italian, Spanish, and Japanese.
Even if your small business does not have a large team of customer care staff, you can still adopt this strategy. Focus on social media listening and go through mentions and questions that customers may have. Try to answer the questions as soon as possible, as this can help your brand to stand out and allow you to save time.
One of the mistakes you can make is to ignore customer concerns and questions on social media. People are very quick to notice a brand that has social media interaction. This can simplify your marketing efforts and prevent customers from making endless calls.
Since customers communicate a lot through social media, invest in customer care efforts. Instead of responding to negative comments online, provide excellent customer service that can show concern and build customer loyalty.
You can have a customer advocacy base consisting of a group of customers and employees who look at your brand positively.
6. Cross-channel marketing
Consistency is a key success factor in promoting brands on social media. Heineken used an interactive video to facilitate viewer involvement in its Departure Roulette campaign. The participants could win vacations while the nonparticipants were left out.
The cross-channel tactics involved marketing the video on YouTube, website Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. If you have a marketing video with content that can work well on various social media platforms, upload it to reach more potential customers.
One of the most effective ways of winning on cross-channel marketing is through creating buyer personas. Before creating content, understand who your customers are in terms of their behavior, preferences, and buying habits. Choose a medium that complements each other.
You can have all the data consolidated on a customer data platform. Have the analytics data available to analyze your leads’ touchpoints by tracking URLs. Track the emails that have been sent to customers and identify the ones that have had a great impact.
Focus on aligning content with the buyer’s unique journey. You can design content-based on the customer’s habits. For instance, when a customer leaves their cart before they finish shopping, you can send a discount offer via email.
A popular smoothie entity, Innocent Drinks, use relevant humor on Twitter. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the company has actively been involved in creating humorous content to make people smile. They have been reminding people that they are not struggling alone in the lockdown.
Social media is so-called for a reason. You can use humor to interact with your audience by posting funny clips and following back your customers. Create a funny banner on Twitter and allow people to comment about it and you back up their feedback.
Find some entertaining and fun ways of responding to your audience. If possible, you can consider hiring a social media management company that may have comedy writers to handle issues for you.
If you have some facts and figures that your audience is concerned about, turn them into an infographic and for each one of them, share a funny joke or idea. Your audience is likely to lap them up or share them widely.
Send some humorous merch to your loyal customers that can create photo opportunities. Avoid making it so hilarious, else they may resist sharing it. Ensure that customers are motivated to share.
Big brands are doing amazing things to maintain an impactful social media presence. Social media is accessible to all businesses regardless of their size.
You can adapt the strategies that big brands are using to gain brand recognition. You don’t need to have the resources that the big brands have. Choose an appropriate strategy from the example above to take your business to the next level.
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Emily Harrinson works for a company in London since 2006 and is regarded as one of the best content editors. She also has freelance assignments from a research paper and essay writing service and a professional essay writing service. Her hobbies include reading books, watching sports, and listening to music. She is a very positive person and sets big goals for herself.