It’s almost December and any day now blog posts about adjusting your marketing strategy will be popping up like mushrooms. And partly the authors will make some interesting points. After all, it’s important to juggle current trends, always changing, enigmatic algorithms, and customer expectations. We all need to change to keep our social media channels growing.
But I would like to present a different point of view today.
Instead of focusing on new trends and alternations to your social media channels, let’s take a look at evergreen strategies for social media growth.
They form a basis for a robust social media presence that can benefit your business in terms of generating new leads, boosting brand awareness, and increasing sales.
What is social media growth?
I know that this sounds pretty easy, to say the least, but if we want to be thorough we have to make sure we are all on the same page.
We can distinguish three approaches when it comes to measuring social media growth:
- taking a look at the followers’ number;
- measuring social media reach;
- tracking the engagement of your followers.
All of them have their pros and cons, and it’s vital to be aware of them and measure the metrics you really need.
Taking a deeper look at the followers’ number is one of the easiest ways to measure your social media growth. You don’t even need an external tool for it.
However, when it comes to social media growth the followers’ count is often considered a vanity metric. It’s not an all-encompassing measurement and doesn’t tell anything about your social media health.
The second social media growth metric is much more valuable. Tracking your social media reach will tell you how many might have seen your content. The more people you reach, the more you can boost your brand awareness. And that’s one of the most important aspects of social media for business.
And thirdly, engagement rates can be an indicator of social media growth as well. Many companies pay so much attention to the hard numbers that they forget about the very nature of social media – being social.
Social media engagement is, therefore, one of the most important metrics when it comes to measuring social media growth. When your audience engages with your messaging, they automatically become your brand ambassadors.
Word-of-mouth marketing is the most effective form of promoting your business, yet it’s also most difficult to achieve. But with evergreen social growth strategies, you’ll be able to implement it as well.
The question remains – how do you grow your social media channels?
Thankfully, there’s a golden middle way. For robust social media growth, you have to combine all three tactics. It will give almost all the necessary information about the state of your social media presence.
4 Evergreen Social Media Growth Strategies
Once we established what social media growth really means, it’s high time to take a deeper look at the four evergreen social media growth strategies.
They are called evergreen for a reason – no matter the platform, algorithm, or audience, they will work in your favour. They will help you build a robust social media presence, and benefit from all the goodness social media has to offer.
1. Listen to your audience
In its core, social media is all about being social. Your audience and potential customers are talking, your job is to listen to their conversations.
A helpful hand is one of Buffer’s top social media listening tool, Brand24.
How does social media monitoring tool work exactly?
You start by creating a project.
In the project creation wizard enter the keywords related to your industry. That does sound a bit enigmatic, so let me give you some examples.
If I were a restaurant owner I would definitely monitor phrases such as: “who can recommend a restaurant in…” or “best restaurant in…”.
That way, anytime someone asks the question on Yelp or any other forum, you’ll receive a notification on email, dedicated Slack channel, or an in-app alert. That’s an opportunity to jump into a conversation and tell your potential customers about your business.
What if you run an e-commerce and not a brick-and-mortar shop?
You can always monitor keywords around your business niche. A great idea for someone producing lipsticks would be to monitor phrases such as “gloss”; “beauty products”; or “lip gloss”. That way you’ll know what’s happening in your industry, what your customers’ like to share online and what are their pain points when it comes to your product. Maybe they would like different packaging? Or the delivery company you use often misplace the packages?
People love to share their experiences on social media. All you have to do is listen carefully.
2. Monitor your performance
Every strategy needs some numerical background. Without solid social media analytics, you won’t be able to see the progress your company is making.
One of the blessings of social media is hashtags. Thanks to hashtags you can easily see how your content is performing.
Create a project where your main keyword is your branded hashtag. It’s important to set up your project in advance, as social media monitoring tools, in general, don’t collect historical data.
Brand24 gathers all the necessary information you need for analysing your hashtag performance.
The tool will get you information about:
- the volume of mentions
- social media reach
- sentiment analysis
- total number of likes, comments, and shares
- influence of social media authors
- most active social media authors
- most active sites.
By combining these metrics you can measure your social media growth.
Aggregation of different social media metrics is important because it will give you a more holistic view of your situation. The number of mentions might be high, but if the majority of mentions is negative, you don’t really have a reason to celebrate.
Take a look for yourself and set up a project here.
3. Take a closer look at your competitors
The beauty of social media monitoring is that you easily set up a project and monitor the activities of your competitors. And it’s 100% legal and ethical.
With social media monitoring project for your competitors, you could spot right away their best performing content. That will give you insights into what your competitors’ customers expect. You have a chance to adjust your offering and sway their customers’ to your side.
An interesting metric will be the context of the discussion.
The context of a discussion is an overview of the words that are used in relation to your competitors. By examining the results closely, you can see the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors and convince unhappy customers to your product.
Moreover, speaking more closely about social media growth, take a look at influencer campaigns your competitors are running. They usually have a dedicated hashtag you can track. You will know how well their target audience is responding to their efforts.
By influencers, I mean not only paid cooperations where people are obliged to speak about a certain company in a positive way. There are also influencers (people with solid social media following) who are talking about your competitors in a negative way.
The key take away? Keep your eye on the ball when it comes to your competitors and try to jump in whenever you can. Monitoring hashtags across multiple social media channels will definitely help you with that.
4. Provide high – quality content
That’s social media growth marketing 101 but I still see a ton of content where brands brag about the newest features of their projects and services and not about the practical applications that will help their users in everyday situations.
High-quality content is not only about the visuals, although they are important. It’s about showing a practical application of your product.
A great example of high-quality, user-generated content for social media growth is Apple’s Instagram account. I’m not really interested in the developments in the newest model of iPhone, but when I see photos like this one it might prompt me to buy this model of smartphone.
Moreover, Apple is exploring the social side of Instagram reposting content from other social media users. It has many positive effects, including:
- popularising your branded hashtag and therefore boosting your social media presence;
- showing your followers you care about them;
- not having to produce a massive amount of content by yourself.
How social media growth helps business?
Without a doubt, you can benefit immensely from a strong social media presence, that’s why growing your social media accounts is so important. Having a steady social media growth, both in terms of followers numbers and social media engagement, will help you promote your brand.
Many things are going to change in the next year but not the importance of social media for almost all businesses. Of course, they will be some alternations and social media will develop in many different directions.
But there are aspects of social media growth that will remain constant. It will be one of the most important sources of followers. And engaged followers will, sooner or later, transform into loyal customers and brand ambassadors.
Social media growth is, at its core, about listening to your audience and meeting their needs. If you do that, you’ll be on the safe side.
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