Think about the last big purchase you made. Chances are you probably asked a family member or a friend for their experience or recommendations. You may have even asked for advice on Facebook or Twitter.
According to a report from Nielsen
, you are not alone. The majority of buyers worldwide turn to the advice of friends and family to recommend new products. That same report shows social media posts as a source for information has grown by 11 percent since last year. As consumers, it’s clear that word of mouth is a trusted source to lead us to the best places to eat, purchases to make and people to hire.
There is no bigger “mouth” than social media.
It’s no longer a question of whether or not you need to be on social media, it’s now a matter of which social platform you should use and what you should share. The best way to determine where you need to invest your time (and money) is to create a plan for sharing content.
Five steps to build a social strategy:
1. Set a goal.
Sometimes the best place to start is to figure out where you want to be and work your way back. Yes, we know: you want to increase sales but HOW do you want to do that? Do you want to be seen as an expert in the field? Do you want people to know about a specific product, service or what makes you unique? Pinpoint your goal first; develop your social content second.
2. Find your people.
We’ve talked about the importance of fueling the content machine
before but it’s also equally important that you’re reaching the people who want to hear what you have to say. Tailor your content for the social network where you’re sharing it.
3. Identify the need.
What are people talking about and how can you join the conversation? Choosing timely topics for your social media posts is one way to provide your followers with content that may be useful or interesting to them.
4. Be unique.
Social media is not a one-size fits all. What works for one company may not be the right fit for another. Stay true to your brand and company culture with photos or content that fit your business.
5. Don’t tweet and run.
Be part of the conversation! Stay tuned in to your social media posts and you’ll be able to get a good idea of what works and what doesn’t. It will also open up opportunities to engage your loyal and perspective customers.