What is Social Media Marketing?
How a Strategic Social Media Campaign Can Generate Revenue and Awareness for Your Brand
Social media is a powerful way to connect with your target market. When used correctly, it can allow your brand to create a dialogue with your customers and engage with them directly, on their phones, smart watches and laptop screens. In fact, it’s one of the most effective ways to build a community with your target audience — from any location, any time.
While many people still see social media marketing as simply posting on social from a branded account, this isn’t true anymore. Social media should be strategic, highly-specialized and approached with specific goals around your desired outcomes — above and beyond sales.
Social media marketing is more than the aesthetic ads in your Instagram feed, unboxing videos on TikTok’s For You Page, or talking about your latest product offer on LinkedIn. A good social media campaign can inspire genuine conversations with your potential customers, which can bloom into trusted consumer relationships over time.
Does Your Brand Need Social Media Marketing?
Social media is a potent digital marketing weapon. Consider this: Younger consumers rate TikTok as their preferred platform for conducting searches for information. Across all age groups, 58% of the world’s population uses social media on a daily basis for a total of 2.5 hours per day — often more. And, of all users, 97% use multiple different platforms.
With a social media agency, your brand can be empowered to make the right decision about where to place your content across Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. You can promote your products, services and brand message — and even generate new revenue streams, like in-app shopping.
In short — your current and target customers are already online. A well-thought-out and well executed social media marketing campaign can help you reach them.
How Does Social Media Work with Your Existing Marketing?
Your social media presence should be an authentic reflection of your brand, presented in a way that will resonate with the specific users you hope to reach on a particular channel. It’s an immensely detailed exercise in effective copywriting and content development.
The best social media campaigns share a deep cohesion with your other marketing platforms, both owned channels (like your website or blog) and earned channels (like your PR placements). That’s the crux of integrated marketing; it adherences to your core identity. (Just because your target audience is 20-25, for example, does not mean that posting to TikTok will be right for your B2B brand.)
A true social media marketing partner will monitor trends to ensure your content resonates, and then guide you in identifying your target audience and what platforms they prefer.
Social media marketing can be an asset to the rest of your marketing mix. It can boost your PR efforts by amplifying new products, services and promotions, and is an excellent venue to share media replacements and engage with industry reporters.
It can also be used to advertise new marketing promotions and campaigns, run special contests, drive traffic to specific pages on your website, and feed into your sales and newsletter pipelines.
What Does an Effective Social Media Marketing Campaign Include?
Hiring a social media agency is a big investment for any brand, and it’s important to understand whether your company is getting its money’s worth. After all, the effectiveness of the campaign will ultimately determine your return on that investment. Our social media marketing experts recommend that every campaign should include:
- A brand analysis: While not every agency takes this approach right from the start, it’s a critical step in the life of your brand. A thorough analysis helps to solidify your brand identity and how you want to be represented in the media. (If you want to learn how we do this, specifically, you can read about it on our PR services page.)
- Social Media Strategy Development: This step is how your brand can build your social media presence from the ground up. The best agency partners will manage account setup and messaging strategy to identify the platforms that will make the greatest impact with your customer base. There is no one platform that is right for every brand. Your social media marketing agency should also guide you in repurposing the content on your ancillary channels for social media use, such as blogs, articles, whitepapers, and email campaigns.
- Social Media Content Calendar Creation: Your social media agency should also develop a content calendar that takes into account product or service announcements and other significant dates for your company. A content calendar is most effective when it shares cohesion with broader marketing initiatives, from graphic and video creation to the approval and posting schedule.
- Social Media Account Management: Resource management services will be essential for your ongoing account support, engagement and content development. Your agency should coordinate deeply with your entire marketing team to ensure your brand sounds consistent on every platform — from custom-designed posts to comments, shares and replies. The best agencies will even connect with your external corporate vendors and business partners for creative collaborations and cross-promotions.
- Social Media Profile Refresh: If you’re new to social media marketing for your brand, it’s likely you’ll require a refresh of your existing accounts. Your agency partner should complete a thorough review of each account and implement strategic updates, with a goal of achieving cross-platform brand consistency.
- Social Copy for PR Placements: Social media is a powerful tool for boosting your PR results, so make sure your agency is ready to work with your PR team. (That’s why, at Trust Relations, we integrate marketing with PR.) Social platforms can amplify and share your press wins and customize that content to the format of your various owned channels. In doing so, your agency can maximize exposure and engagement for your earned media clippings.
- Social Media Advertising: Social media ads can super-charge your marketing strategy around key events, dates and promotions. A skilled social media partner will aid in the conceptualization, creation, placement, and management of ads across various social platforms. To be successful, those ads must be tailored to reach your target audiences on each platform, and will require ongoing monitoring and adjustment to remain effective.
- Graphic Design: Nobody wants to look at stock photography and templated content, and a good social media agency will deliver original digital graphics designed by experts. These designs should complement your company projects and ongoing PR initiatives, and match your brand style and voice.
- Robust Reporting and Analysis: To maintain your relevance online, it’s important that your social media team is constantly monitoring for competitive accounts and timely trends. The best social media partners will take the stress out of this process — that’s one reason we offer account management at Trust Relations — and close the loop with detailed metric analysis. It’s the most reliable way to ensure your branded content resonates and engages your audiences to meet your digital marketing goals.
How Does Trust Play into Social Media Marketing?
Establishing trust with your social media audience is crucial to developing and engaging with your online community. At our agency, we take the “Trust Relations” approach. It’s a term coined by CEO and Founder April White to describe a new approach to strategic communications focused on conveying clients’ authentic actions, value and goodwill.
A comprehensive and well-executed social media campaign can boost your credibility online, strengthen your company’s reputation and unlock new revenue streams. Your target customers must trust your brand, before you can forge meaningful relationships with prospects, expand your reach, and ultimately generate more conversions and sales.
With new features, updates and social platforms emerging every day, your social media marketing strategy must be nimble and dynamic. With the right content, distributed on the platforms at the right time, you can build brand recognition, generate conversions, inspire customer loyalty and augment your brand credibility.
If you’re ready to take the next step to power up your own social media campaign — we have you covered. You can work with us here.
Trust Relations Team