Written by Naser Alubaidi
A strong social media following is a major form of validation for a brand. It’s a simple way to say hey, we’re popular, well-known, and trustworthy. With the right strategy, social media will also generate revenue.
But how do you create an engage social media following?
Creating a reliable, engaged, profitable following on social media is done with a number of small, effective activities that are scaled up over a period of time. It includes designing unique social media graphics, demonstrating thought leadership, and directly interacting with your target audience in new ways.
It’s not just luck or a series of viral content that explodes your page overnight.
To help you out, here are the 4 steps to growing an engaged social media following:
- Identify your best social strategies and tactics
- Lay down baselines and set goals
- Use your goals to develop strategies and determine tactics
- Automate social media posts, reflect and act
Let’s dive in!
Identify your best social strategies and tactics
Start by auditing your past social media graphics, posts and engagement across all your pages. This may seem tedious but it’ll save you plenty of time and effort in two ways.
First, you’ll find out what didn’t work at all and avoid repeating those activities. Second, you’ll know what has worked in the past pretty well, which gives you a great place to start from and build your page.
If your page isn’t very active, you might not have much to audit. However, evaluating your content and posts every few months is a helpful habit to develop. It lets you revisit what’s working and what’s not, so that you can constantly improve the quality of your content and the engagement it drives. Taking this extra step is what ensures your digital marketing efforts produce a competitive advantage.
Lay down baselines and set goals
Baselines are measures of where you’re currently at in terms of engagement, growth, revenue, followers, shares and so on. They are also the basis for what your goals aim to achieve. If your future activities aren’t intended to surpass previously set baselines, you’re working backwards.
Once you have your baselines, you can decide on your goals. Be sure to avoid vague, generic goals that just sound meaningful. Instead, apply the SMART framework to ensure your goal is:
- Specific: Focuses on a channel and a particular outcome
- Measurable: The outcome can be measured
- Achievable: It is something that can actually be done
- Relevant: It lines up with your business goals
- Timely: Must be done within a specific time frame
Bring it all together, and a SMART goal looks like this:
Increase our Facebook followers by 33% percent by the end of Q3.
Use your goals to develop strategies and determine tactics
Now that you have goals in mind, you need to formulate strategies to achieve them. A strategy can be as simple as posting twice as many blog articles to your Facebook page each week; sharing more visuals and less plain-text posts; curating user-generated content and more. Start with simple marketing strategies that produce results with minimal effort, before executing large-scale ideas.
Then for each strategy lay down a corresponding set of tactics. For example, if you are going to post more blog articles or visual content to your Facebook page, then you’ll need to determine topics, research those topics, determine relevant keywords, write the actual posts, publish and promote them, and so on.
Automate social media posts, reflect and act
Pre-schedule and automate your social media posts with tools like Hootsuite, Buffer, CoSchedule and more. Hire a VA to manage some of your marketing processes. Free yourself up as much as possible, because if you’re responsible for posting every single piece of content yourself, you’ll be overwhelmed. Besides, you need to focus on analyzing your content’s performance.
If you see certain kinds of content are doing well while others aren’t, act on it. Adjust your pre-scheduled content, create more of what your target audience likes, and scale back or discard anything they don’t.
Executing a strategy is less about doing exactly what you set out to do, and more about continually adjusting so that you can achieve your goal. Then, once the allotted time to achieve your goal has passed, determine what worked, consider why it worked and how you can continue to replicate whatever is working.
Over time, you’ll understand the types of content your target audience enjoys and why. This will help you scale up a number of different activities, and you’ll be able to grow your following exponentially. Don’t settle for generic content either, anyone can design unique social media graphics today, easily and quickly.
Don’t feel frustrated either, if your first few strategies aren’t producing the desired results. If you’re very new to the social media space, it can take some time for something to really click. But when it does, and it will, things will start falling into place!
What are your thoughts? What are marketing strategies that have worked well for you? Let me know in the comments.