Expert opinion: utilising social media as a business
Updated: Oct 13, 2021
Attributed to Sophie Bidesi
For over a decade, social media had been a popular and effective way for businesses to communicate and connect with their stakeholders and showcase their brand personality.
A recent report by We Are Social revealed that 3.8 billion people are actively using social media, which amounts to nearly half of the global population. This figure highlights how businesses can reach more people than ever before, making these channels powerful tools when used strategically.
Many businesses have made great use of social media platforms. However, with much of the world currently restricted to their homes and many shop fronts closed it is now more important than ever for brands to have a social presence.
In a time where physical presence is restricted, social media has been flooded by businesses and individuals trying to stay relevant and connected with their stakeholders.
To coincide with this, a recent article by Forbes revealed there has been a staggering increase in social media usage since COVID-19 – with engagement rising more than 61% above normal usage rates.
While we slowly recover from COVID-19 and its side effects, there appears to be no slowing down on the social media front. We anticipate the impact of the past few months will continue to shape the way brands communicate long after the pandemic is over, making social media a vital tool for businesses moving forward. However, with these platforms becoming more saturated, it can be challenging for brands to effectively use their social channels.
How do you cut through the noise and keep your business top-of-mind, while making sure you aren’t bombarding users with unneeded, unwanted information?
We have outlined our top tips for businesses to best utilise social media channels below.
1. Create a strategy
Before you begin, clearly outline your objectives for each of your social media platforms.
Assess the current state of your social media platforms, then decide what you are hoping to achieve through strategic social media use.
Set measurable Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) so that you can track your progress and the types of posts that are performing well across each platform.
2. Get familiar with each platform
Different platforms attract different audiences. For instance, Instagram is a great way to reach consumers and the general population, while LinkedIn provides a means to network within the business world.
When repurposing content across multiple channels, ensure that you are adapting the content to suit each platform. Simple things like using hashtags and location tagging are an easy way to reach more users.
For example, if you post a LinkedIn article, you may create a series of graphics that summarise the article for Instagram stories, and a shortened post that highlights the key points for Facebook.
3. Quality over quantity
While it is important to post regularly to maintain relationships and stay top-of-mind, it is better to not post rather than post poor quality content.
As a business, make sure posts are aligned with your brands’ tone, values and purpose.
Furthermore, posts should pass the “so what?” test, which is outlined in Nicole’s Top 5 Tips for Communicating.
4. Actively engage
You can’t expect to receive post engagement without reciprocating the effort.
Engaging with other accounts involves liking, commenting and sharing posts by other users, but make sure you're being genuine.
Engage with pages and content that resonates with you and your brand. It is a trying time for every business, so a little bit of effort can go a long way.
5. Monitor and measure
Part of your social media strategy (step one) will involve setting Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) so that you can measure the success of your posts and see whether you are reaching your objectives.
Pay attention to posts that perform well and adjust your strategy accordingly.
For example, if your audience is responding well to how-to-video content, add more video content into your content calendar.
Similarly, if this type of content is performing poorly compared to your other posts, consider making changes to the format or content, or remove it from your plan and instead increase the type of content that is performing well.