Social Media Marketing Goals: Expectation vs. Reality | ITVibes

Social Media Marketing Goals: Expectation vs. Reality

Social Media Marketing Goals, ITVibes, Houston Digital Marketing Agency

Is your marketing assistant or digital marketing agency managing your social media the way you want them to? It’s likely your social media manager has some intel you don’t. Marketing strategies can be much different when it comes to social media campaigns. Understanding this difference will help you reach whatever social media marketing goals your business has in mind.

Primarily meant for social engagement but a very effective business marketing tool, social media marketing requires a different approach altogether. Keep reading to learn more about why your social media marketing goals may not seem to align with the way your social media channels are currently being used to market your business.

Not sure if your social media marketing team understands your business goals? Gain insight into their #socialmediastrategy before requesting changes that might set you back! Click To Tweet

9 Valuable Ways Social Media is Used in Marketing

Before you can understand how social media is used to promote your business, you’ll need to gain some insight into how social media marketing works. Anyone can post on social media, but a smart social media strategist knows how to leverage your social media platforms to gain qualified business leads.

From an outside perspective, some of their social media posts may seem unrelated to your business goals. But it’s more likely that every post has been carefully planned as part of a thriving social media strategy.

Here are 9 ways successful social media marketers are using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google My Business, LinkedIn, and other social networks for proven lead generation:

  1. Promote Social Engagement
  2. Improve Search Engine Optimization
  3. Develop Local SEO
  4. Increase Brand Awareness & Authority
  5. Educate & Inform Potential Customers
  6. Promote Products, Services & Events
  7. Advertise Products, Services & Events
  8. Use Effective Social Media Listening
  9. Make Customer Service a Priority
  10. Set Realistic Social Media Goals

1) Promote Social Engagement

The primary goal of any marketing strategy is to generate leads and revenue for your business. But social media platforms were built to be social!

Every social media marketing strategy must include posts that are designed to connect with your audience and give them a reason to come back for more. These posts take the form of videos (created by you or shared by industry partners), real photos of real people benefiting from your offerings, viral posts, interesting articles, inspirational quotes, and any other post that invokes an emotional connection with your fan base. Often deemed as “fluff” or “extras” by CEOs and Sales teams, these posts are super important to your strategy!

Without that connection, the rest of your social posts will fall into oblivion. Use social engagement to form a bond with and gain loyalty from your followers so next time they need a product or service you offer, you are the first to come to mind!

2) Improve Search Engine Optimization

Google indeed takes cues from social media platforms to learn about how people view your business. But did you know that each social media network has its own search engine? Your social media manager probably does and that’s why they’ve incorporated #hashtags into their social media marketing strategy.

Social media specialists also link blog posts and other pages from your website within your social posts. This is to drive traffic to your website, which will gain some momentum for your SEO efforts. The more people that find your site to be a valuable source of information, the more Google will take notice.

3) Develop Local SEO

While you may be familiar with how social media managers use your networks for search engine optimization, you may not be up to speed on tactics used for local SEO. Blog posts may contain hyper-local keyphrase targeting but there are other ways to let the search engines know which areas you serve.

On social media, posts often take the form of local news, events, charities, and more. While they may not seem directly related to your business, they tie your business back to the community you serve. This can be extremely valuable in a competitive market such as managed IT services or real estate.

4) Increase Brand Awareness & Authority

Often a silent but worthy benefit, brand awareness is built through social media efforts. The more people see your brand online posting relevant and valuable content, the more they will remember you as a leader in your industry. Connect to them on an emotional level and they’re even more likely to remember you the next time they need a product or service you offer or give a referral to a friend or family member.

Pro tip: Word-of-mouth referrals are often given through social media today. Make sure your biggest supporters follow your social business pages so they can include a link when making their recommendation.

5) Educate & Inform Potential Customers

What is the #1 reason you click on a social media link? Chances are you want to learn more about a certain topic or read about a current event. Sharing this type of content on your social media pages keeps visitors interested in following your page.

Educational articles related to your business objectives will also help to set you up as an expert in your field. This will attract more people to your brand as a trusted authority in your industry.

6) Promote Products, Services & Events (Organic)

After you’ve gained the trust and attention of your followers, you can then begin to weave posts into your strategy which directly promote your products and services. Because these followers have begun to recognize your brand as authoritative and trustworthy, they will be more likely to take an interest in how your products and services can add value to their lives.

7) Advertise Products, Services, & Events (Paid)

While a perfect world would revolve around organic results, social media is another game where you have to pay to play. Incorporate advertising into your social media marketing plan to gain even more exposure and credibility for your business.

8) Use Effective Social Media Listening

Social listening is twofold: 1) tracking mentions of your brand and 2) tracking mentions of keyphrases related to your products and services. Tracking mentions of your brand allows you to monitor your reputation online and take steps to either clean up or respond to negativity or further use positive publicity to your advantage. Tracking what others are saying in your industry through mentions of keyphrases allows you to size up the competition and adjust your strategy to battle for the attention of your target audience.

9) Make Customer Service a Priority

Finally, a social media specialist will know how to effectively incorporate social media into your customer service strategy so you can reach your goals. Messages and comments should always be responded to promptly and appropriately. Much like a Communications Officer, your social media team will be well-trained in how to respond quickly, while still maintaining a positive reputation among your followers.

10) Set Realistic Social Media Goals

At the end of the day, you still have a business to run and revenue to produce. Is your social media strategy adding up? Make sure your social media manager is setting measurable goals and using social media insights and Google Analytics to report progress.

If you feel like your expectations are not being met, talk to your social media team about your concerns. Learn more about how they go about setting goals for each campaign and how they can combine your goals with their strategy for the optimal outcome.

Examples of SMART Social Media Goals

When crafting a social media strategy, setting SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) goals is crucial. Consider these smart social media goals:

  • Increase Brand Awareness: Boost brand visibility and recognition through targeted content and engagement.
  • Grow Audience Engagement: Enhance user interaction by encouraging comments, shares, and participation.
  • Drive Website Traffic: Direct users from social platforms to your website to increase visits and conversions.
  • Generate Leads and Sales: Create content that leads to conversions and measurable sales growth.
  • Enhance Customer Satisfaction: Provide excellent customer service and support via social media channels.

Each goal should be specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and bound by a timeframe to effectively gauge success and guide your social media efforts.

Types of Social Media Platforms

Social media marketing is like a treasure trove of opportunities for businesses. It’s not just about Facebook or Instagram; there’s a whole world of different platforms, each with its own unique characteristics and user demographics.

Firstly, there’s Facebook, a giant among social platforms. It’s fantastic for reaching a broad audience, offering various ad formats and sophisticated targeting options. It’s ideal for most businesses due to its wide user base and diverse functionalities.

Then there’s Instagram, a visual paradise. It’s all about stunning images and short videos. It’s the go-to for lifestyle, fashion, beauty, and visual-centric businesses. With its emphasis on aesthetics, it’s where businesses can showcase their visual storytelling.

Twitter is like the world’s biggest cocktail party where conversations happen in real-time. It’s perfect for timely updates, engaging with customers, and trending conversations.

LinkedIn is the professional hub. It’s the place for B2B connections, networking, and showcasing industry expertise. It’s where your business can thrive by engaging with industry professionals.

Pinterest is your digital bulletin board. It’s great for DIY, recipes, lifestyle, and inspirational content. If your business revolves around creativity and inspiration, Pinterest is a goldmine.

YouTube is the home of video content. With billions of users watching videos every day, it’s an ideal platform to educate, entertain, and engage your audience.

Each of these platforms has its strengths and caters to different audiences. Understanding these nuances and tailoring your content and strategy to match each platform’s unique style is key to effective social media marketing.

Common Questions

How can a business effectively measure the impact of social media efforts on actual business revenue or tangible ROI?

We recommend using tools like Google Analytics and social media management tools to track key performance data such as website traffic, impressions, conversion rates, and sales that come from our social media campaigns. By analyzing these numbers, we see how social media directly contributes to your business revenue.

How should a business adapt strategies to changing platform algorithms and trends?

We keep a close eye on changes in social media platforms and regularly update our strategies to match these shifts. For example, if a platform like Facebook changes its algorithm, we adjust our content strategy to ensure the best possible post reach and engagement rate.

In what ways can a social media strategy be tailored for different business models or industries?

Each business has unique needs, and in turn, must set social media goals that make the most sense for them. For instance, a B2B company might focus on thought leadership content, while a local retail store might emphasize community engagement. As you’re thinking about what social media marketing goals you can target, it’s important to know your audience and what appeals to them. This will ultimately determine how your strategy is tailored to them.

Combining Your Expectations with Social Media Reality

Ready to harness the power of social media for your business? Our digital marketing agency in Houston specializes in customized social media strategies for B2C and B2B businesses. We offer full setup, optimization, and management for the most popular social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, Google Business Profile, and more. 

Contact our team for a social media marketing quote customized to your business needs. We’re ready to help you start reaching your goals!

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED FEBRUARY 2019