Regardless of whether you’re a B2B firm targeting top executives or a B2C brand chasing millennials, your audience is on social media. With roughly 2.6 billion monthly active social media users already, the number is only going to rise in the coming years. And the best way to grow your business is to effectively engage this ever-growing audience on social media.

The only problem is that most businesses either don’t leverage their social media profiles to their full potential, or in the right way for digital marketing. Popular, ineffective, and novice strategies that involve “spraying and praying” your content on multiple channels aren’t going to do much good.

For the ultimate competitive advantage, it’s crucial that you leverage your social media content marketing effectively. Optimized content marketing paired with a strategic social media approach is a powerful combination - one that will maximize your digital marketing ROI.

To help get you started, here are a few tips to help you achieve your full potential:

1. Post on Relevant Social Networks

Businesses often assume they need to be omnipresent and make company profiles on everything from LinkedIn to Snapchat. But there really isn’t any need for them to do so. Especially if your target audience doesn’t have a presence on the platforms you’re posting content on.

While there are multiple benefits to each social media tool, investing time and money in ones that won’t give you the kind of ROI you need would be a waste. Figure out which platforms align well with your business, and then put all your energy into getting the most out of them.

Penguin Random House, the international bookseller does a good job of demonstrating this point. They’ve compiled fun listicles of books to read for practically every kind of reader and situation. They’ve leveraged Pinterest to create several boards for all of their followers.

With boards ranging from, “Pride and Prejudice Forever” to “Beach Reads,” Random House touches the entire spectrum. One of their most popular boards is, “Words to Live by,” which features amazing literary quotes. Just take a look below at their plethora of boards below.

Post on Relevant Social Networks

Image via Pinterest

2. Optimize Content for Each Platform

It isn’t enough to simply identify and post on the right social media platforms. It is equally important that you post the right kind of content that is best suited for each platform. The audiences on each platform have their expectations and preferences for what they want to see on it.

While Facebook works best for curated content and videos, Instagram is for photos and stories. If Twitter is for news, GIFs, and blog posts; then LinkedIn is best for company news, job-related content, and professional content.

Have a look at Maersk Line’s digital marketing campaign. It’s storytelling done right. They often produce videos about their brand, including how they help their clients and their employees’ stories showcasing why they love working here. They take to Facebook and YouTube to promote and share this kind of content.

And if you chance upon their Instagram account, it’s filled with photos of their ships, various shipyards, and gorgeous views of the sea. By inviting employees, dock workers, and everyday people like you and I to send in their Maersk stories they earned several shout-outs on Instagram. And to keep things interesting, they even share quirky and historical facts about their ships, and updates from the seafarers’ journies like this one below.

Optimize Content for Each Platform

Image via Instagram

3. Engage Followers

Now that you’re publishing optimized content on the right platforms, take your game to the next level by engaging your audience. The best way to organically grow your social media reach is to interact with your followers and influencers.

In two recent reports from the Content Marketing Institute, they found that 91% of B2B and 86% of B2C marketers plan on using content marketing in their digital campaigns. Everyone wants a piece of the pie. By dedicating some time daily to connecting with your audience, you’ll outshine your competition.

You can like your followers’ posts and pages on Facebook, or thank them in the comments when they share your posts or retweet you. Social media content marketing is all about forging lasting relationships with your followers. Even the smallest things go a long way to establish brand loyalty.

GoPro does an amazing job of substantiating this point. They are growing their brand through amplification by sharing posts from their followers and influencers. Check out this gorgeous photo from one of their influencers, which they shared on their own page.

Engage Followers

Image via Facebook

Take this a step further by responding to customer reviews or resolve customer problems like Starbucks often does. By being prompt with their replies and solving customer issues, they’re showing people they care about them and value them. And that’s what customers want - to be made to feel special.

Starbucks

Image via Facebook

4. Analyze and Optimize

When it comes analysis and optimization, there are two things to consider, and they are both interlinked. Firstly, it’s important that you regularly analyze your content marketing metrics to derive useful insights about your social media activity. By figuring out what’s working, and what isn’t, you’ll save valuable resources and increase your ROI.

The second thing to consider here is not only your personal outreach, but also that of your influencers. It’s not enough to simply collaborate with influencers. In order to make the most of your influencer marketing program, you need the right influencers.

This is where Grin can help you. With Grin, you can filter influencer based on their relevance to your social platform, category, engagement rates, and fan following to find the right people for your content marketing. It also helps you track and analyze key data so that you can find actionable insights from your influencer campaign.

Analyze and Optimize

Image via Grin

By using social media analytics you’ll zero in on a strategy that works best for you. Further, you’ll also be able to optimize your existing social media content marketing efforts to further grow your business.

5. Balance Promotional and Useful Content

Resisting the urge to promote and talk about your product on social media is a challenge. But social media content marketing is about creating content that the users will find helpful when they’re ready to make a purchase decision.

The best way to grow your brand organically is to have customers come to you rather than the other way around. You accomplish this by earning a reputation for being a trustworthy authority in the industry. By creating content like tutorials, product reviews, and talking about the industry in general, you’ll see a drastic rise in your followership.

Statista reported that 38% of respondents found online reviews extremely important in making a purchase decision. Maintain an 80/20 balance between educational and informative content, and promotional material. Your content could be a mix of videos, articles, images, infographics, and other engaging content.

Microsoft does this brilliantly as they post just the right number of interesting articles and industry know-how paired with their amazing work. With just a hint of promotional value, they’ve got their strategy working like a charm.

Balance Promotional and Useful Content

Image via Facebook

Conclusion

No matter how good you think your content marketing strategies on social media are, there are always ways you can improve. Using these tips, you can leverage your social media presence to improve your branding. If you have any other social media content marketing tips that aren’t covered above, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

Brian Mechem

Brian Mechem

Brian Mechem is COO and Co-Founder of Grin, a software solution for companies who run influencer marketing programs. Grin's software powers some of the best influencer programs in the world, providing insights on ROI and adding efficiency to the influencer marketing process.

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