An effective social media strategy communicates a brands story in a newsworthy way via the appropriate social media outlets. By using social media correctly it can be a powerful tool that can enhance your brand’s reputation and, ultimately, influence the perceptions and behavior of your target audience. When coupled with a content marketing strategy, social media can easily convert your audience into a customer. And as audiences are increasingly demanding more authenticity from the brands they interact with, the practice is slated to become even more effective at communicating your brand’s story. That’s because earned media can help achieve specific business objectives, such as:
1. Building Brand Awareness
Social Media offers a unique advantage when it comes to building brand awareness—mass exposure to an engaged target audience. By strategically pitching stories to an array of social media avenues that serve your audiences, you can garner readers’ attention easily. Unlike paid advertising, your audience will be inherently interested in the content and more receptive to your message. As a result, your social media efforts can elevate your brand through association with your audiences’ most trusted information sources.
2. Positioning Your Business Experts as Thought Leaders
Social Media is a vehicle for communicating the most innovative, forward-thinking ideas coming out of your business. It allows you to stay relevant and communicate for free as often as you desire to your audience and even those not currently following your pages. After earning media attention repeatedly, your business will come to mind when customers need your services or if someone they know needs them. The strongest form of marketing is referrals, if someone trusts your brand their friends & family will more than likely trust you too, if referred.
3. Growing Your Brand’s Online Presence
Social media can improve your brand’s online presence and provide you with content to feature on your website. After posting on your social media outlets, online users can be drove to your website through links or sheer curiosity. If you are selling a service/product that peaks their interest more often than not they will look through your website. Furthermore, you can direct visitors from your own site to recent social media posts making a two way street for your audience. Thinking of social media as an extension of your content marketing strategy—as opposed to a separate marketing effort—will increase your ROI and further grow your brand’s online presence.
4. Attracting More Business Leads
Building a reputable brand through social media will help establish and strengthen your relationship with stakeholders, customers and the community. Members of these audiences will become leads and offer brand loyalty that can further support the growth of your business. In fact, a Neilsen report found that content coming from an expert, third-party source lifts purchase consideration 38% more than branded content and 83% more than user reviews.
However, social media is not a one-size-fits-all solution. It looks different for every organization. Social media outreach for your brand should be targeted specifically to its unique goals and objectives. That’s why it’s important to understand the bigger picture of how social media, as a tactic, fits into your overarching PR strategy.