• Marketing

10 Actionable Social Media Strategies to Accelerate Business Growth

  • Mehdi Hussen
  • 7 min read
10 Actionable Social Media Strategies to Accelerate Business Growth

Intro

No business can survive without building a digital footprint in today's digitally-powered world. Even your friendly neighborhood cake shop probably has its own Instagram page, where one can place orders and get a cake delivered at home.

As of January 2022, Facebook had 2910 million users, YouTube had 2562 million users, Instagram had 1478 million users, TickTock had 1000 million users, and Facebook Messenger had 988 million users. With the increase in social media users, this is a great opportunity for businesses to increase brand awareness, build trust among their customer base, generate leads, and drive sales via social pages.

Social media platforms continuously innovate to create more engagement and value for consumers and brands. So, here are 10 ways that B2B, B2C, and D2C businesses can leverage social media to accelerate business growth.

10 Actionable Social Media Strategies To Grow Your Business

When building a social media strategy, it's a smart idea for brands to build owned, earned, and paid media chronologically.

  • Owned media — is the content created and controlled by brands, such as their Facebook page or YouTube channel.
  • Earned media — is essentially user-generated content, such as product reviews via Instagram posts.
  • Paid media — is content amplified to an audience via paid inventory, such as retail media campaigns, video ads, or display ads.

Brands can reduce advertising spending by building organic traffic via owned media, inspiring and rewarding user-generated content. On the other hand, paid media can be a more strategic step at a juncture when a brand is looking to scale.

1. Build a Strategic Plan

Before jumping headlong into execution mode, create a blueprint for your social media project. Social media has multiple channels, strategies, and approaches. Here are some basic steps that help create direction for your social plan.

  • The first step is to list your business goals and the audiences you are looking to target.
  • Set some measurable targets in terms of engagement and lead generation.
  • If you already have some digital footprint, do an audit to understand where they stand.
  • Look at how the competition is engaging on social media. Make a list of what you like and dislike.
  • Look up businesses outside of your industry for inspiration. You might find some great ideas.

2. Select the Right Platforms

Choose the right platforms for your business based on your target audience. For instance, if you run an enterprise business and are looking to reach startup founders, CEOs, and sales personnel, then LinkedIn will prove to be a much better investment of your time than Instagram.

On the other hand, if you run a petcare product brand, your target audience will be engaging on Instagram, and you'll have many takers for cute pet video content. However, D2C and B2C businesses can leverage a platform like WhatsApp to run conversational commerce campaigns.

3. Launch & Grow Your Social Media Pages

The next step is to launch your social media pages. You can either launch them all at once or step by step based on access to resources. It's important to remember that social media never sleeps, so pages need to be active 24/7.

Ensure uniformity across all social pages regarding branding, logos, and the brand's voice. At the same time, adapt the tone based on the audience's relevance.

For instance, Starbucks uses its Facebook page to upload aesthetically pleasing, mouthwatering images of food and beverages. These posts trigger excitement in consumers and entice them to visit their coffee shops.

Launch & Grow Your Social Media Pages (Image source: facebook.com/Starbucks)

On the other hand, their Twitter engagement is about connecting with customers, triggering conversations around coffee, and more.

4. Build an Organic Content Marketing Strategy

Your social pages are a platform to tell your brand's story and what sets it apart. The tone of conversations should reflect the personality of the brand. Ensure that the content is useful, educational, and inspiring. For instance, if you are building a sustainable beauty brand, offer useful nuggets on how consumers can benefit from switching to organic beauty products.

Your content marketing strategy can include blogs, a newsletter strategy, video content, and other engaging formats that can be integrated into the core social strategy. You can use content distribution software to get your content in front of your audience. Build a cohesive brand narrative, but not a sales one.

For instance, the Wholefoods Twitter page focuses on educating users through aesthetically pleasing videos, visuals, and polls.

Build an Organic Content Marketing Strategy (twitter.com/WholeFoods)

5. Sell Products via Social Commerce

Today, consumers spend so much time browsing through social media that it has triggered a trend of social selling. This concept enables consumers to shop for products as they surf through their social media feeds. This is a great strategy for brands since they can leverage social media not merely for brand building and visibility but also to drive sales.

For instance, Instagram has introduced Instagram shopping, whereas Facebook has introduced Facebook shops to enable brands to sell products. Below is a peek at how the brand MeUndies uses a mix of eye-catching images, product links, and price displays to nudge customers to make a purchase.

Sell Products via Social Commerce (Image source: facebook.com/meundies/)

6. Encourage User-Generated Content

Today, users love sharing content about products, places, and services they love. It's not about just having fun, but sharing their discoveries within their circle of influence, thus creating free visibility for brands. This is the power of earned media. However, one of the common mistakes brands make is that they do not acknowledge user-generated content.

This can be demotivating for users who put much effort and enthusiasm into their content. It can discourage them from sharing more content relevant to your brand. Instantly, resharing posts, reels, and stories and giving a shoutout to customers make them feel valued.

For instance, GoPro hosted the Million Dollar Challenge, which invites GoPro users to submit inspiring videos. The challenge received over 42,000 submissions from 104 countries, translating to stunning user-generated content for GoPro's YouTube channel.

Encourage User-Generated Content (Image source: YouTube)

By celebrating the talent of its community of GoPro users, the brand was able to build trust and inspire more brand love in the community. The contest also created more buzz for GoPro's flagship product HERO8 Black and its versatile dual-lens camera, MAX.

As another example, the team at the jigsaw puzzle site I’m a Puzzle asked their users to submit photos which they would then turn into jigsaw puzzles and share on social media. It was so popular they ended up building a feature where anyone can create their own jigsaw puzzle and share it among their community.

Steve Elliott, Franchise Owner at Restoration1 says “To accelerate business growth, it’s crucial to put out engaging content and at the same time, build a close connection with your customers. UGC can get the best of both because it works on creating community in an engaging way. Any potential customers will be lured in through the advocacy of your current customers”.

7. Seed a Branded Community

Today, consumers want to converse with those who share their interests and passions. Brands can foster connections by seeding vibrant, safe, aspirational social communities that relate in a direct way to their product or services.

For instance, a motorcycle brand can bring together cross-country bikers, and a brand serving mothers can launch a Facebook group around common concerns and milestones of mothers. This great way to trigger relevant conversations, inspire user-generated content, and build trust.

The financial industry has always struggled to reach women's customers. However, HerMoney, a platform focused on helping women make superior financial choices, has successfully built an audience by creating a community around women and money. Their high-engagement Facebook group has over 18,000 members and has women proactively discussing investments, budgeting, and other finance-related conversations.

Seed a Branded Community (Image source: facebook.com/groups/hermoney)

8. Partner for Co-branded Campaigns

You are always looking to increase your reach and target new customers as a brand. A great way to do it is to partner with a brand with a different audience and run a co-branded campaign. The marketing collaterals of the campaign are amplified across your social media pages and the partner brand's pages.

When partnering with the brand, ensure the right fit regarding the product and the audience segment. For instance, a premium wine brand could partner with a premium cheese brand. A sports activewear brand could partner with a smartwatch company.

For instance, premium luxury brands BMW and Louis Vuitton came together to create a unique experience for lovers of luxury products with the launch of the BMW i8, a four-piece travel luggage collection. The campaign created a huge buzz on social media, and both brands ran co-branded campaigns on their social media pages.

Partner for Co-branded Campaigns (Image source: Instagram)

9. Partner With the Right Influencers

Building trust and expanding the brand narrative are important agendas of social media strategies. Influencers understand how to create an amplifier to create content. By partnering with the right influencers, businesses can build brand awareness and trust and plug their products into interesting ways.

The key is to identify the right influencers. For instance, if one builds a brand selling nutritious snacks for kids, it makes sense to partner with authentic mom influencers who other moms trust. A mismatched influencer can reduce brand trust. Hence, the right fit is key. But note that no reply from an influencer doesn’t always mean you hit the wrong target. The more influential the person is, the busier they are, so feel free to follow up with them until you get a reply.

Dunkin' Donuts partnered with food-focused social influencers who have cultivated an impressive social media following on National Donut Day to create buzz around their special offers for the day.

Partner With the Right Influencers (Image source: instagram.com)

Abdul Saboor, Digital Marketer at The Stock Dork says “As a brand when you want to enhance the level of engagement you receive, form partnerships with influencers on social media platforms. These individuals have certain credibility to their opinions as people follow them on social channels and they are a consistent source of information for consumers as well. Linking your brand with influencers who your customers already feel a sense of connection with, is an innovative way of turning leads into actual paying customers.”

10. Plan Paid Marketing Campaigns

And finally, once your brand has built some organic traction and the revenues have started kicking in, it is time to scale and tap into paid media. Digital advertisers have several avenues to segment audiences and target them more accurately and efficiently.

One way that a brand leverage social media is to use Facebook retargeting ads to re-engage users who have visited your website, added products to their cart, and then abandoned them without making a purchase. Platforms like Facebook can also be leveraged to amplify sponsored posts to a wider audience.

Below is a retargeted sponsored ad by sustainable online retailer Brownliving, which focuses on attracting consumers looking for organic, clean lifestyle products.

Plan Paid Marketing Campaigns (Image source: facebook.com/BrownLivingIndia)

In Conclusion

Today, businesses have access to many smart tools that empower them to streamline, execute and optimize their social media strategies. As businesses scale, automation, optimization, and measurability will play an increasingly important role in helping social media teams keep track of efforts invested versus outcomes delivered.

Smart tools such as keyword finders, rank trackers, backlink finders, and web audits, for instance, enable businesses to optimize and measure the success of their SEO strategies. Last but not least, build trust first and sell later. This is the right progression when it comes to social media.

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