Need a hand building your social media presence or content strategy? Read on to discover expert tips from some of the best social media gurus in the biz.
In this day and age, building a strong and recognizable social media presence is key to growing a successful brand or developing your creative career. With over 4 billion active users worldwide, social media has fast become an essential component of most digital marketing strategies (and for good reason!).
But social media isn’t just a fun tool for connecting with your audience and demonstrating how cool your brand is, it’s also a platform where consumers do their product research, find reviews or recommendations, and even – with the rise of social commerce – purchase products and services. In fact, on average social media users spend 2 hours and 29 minutes a day browsing their feeds, and 43% of them use social media to research and purchase products.
So, while other digital marketing channels, such as your website, email communications and SEO all play important roles in establishing a successful online presence, social media is undoubtedly one of the most effective ways to market your brand, educate and capture the attention of new customers and maintain the loyalty of existing ones.
If you need a little hand building your social media strategy, not to fear – the experts are here! Whether your social media presence is well established, brand new, or in need of a refresh, we’ve collated some valuable tips from a whole host of industry experts on how to create on-point, on-brand social media content that connects with your audience, promotes your products and shows your customers who you are and what you stand for.
“My top tip for building a strong social media presence is planning. Plan to avoid improvising so you can dedicate the time necessary to creating content. At Metricool, we plan all of our social media content in advance, which allows for consistency and a cohesive design throughout all our posts. This way, if an unforeseen event arises, it won’t involve a substantial change because everything is already planned, scheduled and well organized.
For Metricool users, one of the most-valued features of our product is our planning tool because it helps them save time, focus on other tasks, and move faster through their work. A big NO is content improvisation. It doesn’t mean that spontaneity can’t be present on a daily basis or that you can’t show your team behind the scenes, but without a plan, growth becomes more challenging.”
“At BrandMentions, we know defining your target audience is super important. Therefore, diving into demographics but also psychographics can pave the way for a strong and powerful social media presence. It’s easier to create content when you know what your audience wants.
Don’t hesitate to use social media listening tools. You can be missing powerful audience engagement opportunities by not being aware of social mentions, comments, or reposts. The give-back mentality is a sine qua non in 2021.”
“Social media is about amplifying digital visibility and building reliable connections with your audience. However, as there are various social media channels to maintain, staying online all the time is not the best advice. I would say play smarter, not harder.
Using a social media monitoring tool to manage your vast community and interact with the audience is key. It enables you to listen to all the conversations around your brand, and alerts you when there is an eruption of positive or negative sentiment. You can use monitoring tools to engage with your community, run effective social media campaigns, schedule and publish posts, keep an eye on competitors, and build reports. There are various tools, but I would suggest you choose the one that is AI-empowered and provides rich and accurate data. Some of the best social listening tools are from Mentionlytics, Mention and Awario.
Emotional connection and unique content are two other factors you may want to consider while creating campaigns. This kind of marketing entails advertising built around emotion, such as happiness, sadness, fear, love and anger, to elicit a consumer response. These sentiments lead a consumer to trust the brand, spread the campaign and buy the product. No matter how professional you are, your brand messaging needs to encompass human touch.
For instance, P&G’s Thank You, Mom campaign – released for the 2016 Rio Olympics – was a super emotional one. It highlighted a scene where every athlete reminisces about a moment when their mothers comforted and encouraged them in childhood, which helped them strive hard and compete in the Olympics.”
“Our top tip at Falcon for building a strong social media presence in 2021 and onward is having a clear, consistent strategy. There’s no point posting without having a core purpose – it’s quite literally a waste of time, and you will eventually need to develop a strategy, so you might as well do it from the beginning.
Having a strong social media presence implies that you have a dedicated audience that expects consistent, useful content that receives high engagement. It is very difficult to achieve this when you are just posting based on what seems cool at the time or based on a gut feeling. That is not to say that you cannot test—you should always try something new. But the things you test should always tie back to your core strategy.
Start with audience research: who are you targeting, what are their pain points, and how can you provide them a solution and what solutions are they looking for? From there, establish what you have to offer as a product or service and map out how to showcase it on social media in the form of content pillars. These will be your core 3-5 pillars that all of your content should relate back to. Once this is developed, map out your strategic objectives: what it is you want to achieve with your content (i.e brand awareness, community building, etc.)? Once this is mapped out, you can start to develop your core recurring pieces of content that will appear on social media. You should develop recurring themes and clear content types to create consistency. This will establish your brand as a recognizable, helpful resource for your target audience and therefore develop a strong presence on social media.”
“More than ever, social media is about connection and human interaction. With lockdown and work from anywhere, brands need to create low-resource creative on social media and forget high-production materials such as long-form videos. My top tip for building a strong social media presence in 2021 is to go live on every social media platform where your audience is present.
Social Insider’s latest report about Facebook video content strategies shows that only 18.87% of brands go live on Facebook. There is a huge potential for brands to interact with their audience and create meaningful, human relationships with their customers. Also, seek engagement, not follower growth. Use all the features the social platforms have to generate conversations – from polls to documents and videos to increase your brand loyalty and retention.”
“For marketers and business owners, there isn’t a better way to grow your social media presence than a social media giveaway or promotion targeted at your audience. Whether your business is small or large, a promotion will help increase engagement, establish brand awareness, and create buzz.
At Woorise, we know that – when done correctly – giveaways can help you establish your brand on social media, cultivate a loyal following, and share your impressive products or services with a larger audience than you could reach organically.
No matter the size of your business, contests and giveaways are both excellent ways to gain more exposure. Whether the prize is big or small, consumers love free stuff, and they will be more inclined to put in work if the prize is worth it.
According to stats, contests influence purchasing decisions for participants, and three out of four people are more likely to recommend a brand who hosts contests and giveaways. Also, 84.5% of people who enter social media contests still share content from that brand – even after the competition has ended. Ultimately, running a social media giveaway should help you increase your brand recognition, generate leads and attract more followers.”
“2021 is the year of authenticity and transparency, and I hope this will continue further in the coming years. The days of perfect lifestyles and unrealistic edits are long gone. As the global pandemic prevents people from making plans, developments, and following their dreams, they’re craving real content, real looks, and real concerns. And that’s what a strong social media presence is made of in 2021.
Authenticity is being adopted not only by individual social media users, but by brands as well. This year’s Dove campaign called The Selfie Talk highlights the danger of retouching apps and the pressure of posting perfect pictures. According to Dove’s research, by age 13, 80% of girls distort the way they look online.
The shift from perfection is visible not only in social media visuals, but in captions as well. Individual and business users are sharing their personal experiences and opinions on various topics, from self-esteem issues to depression and failure in business – NapoleonCat included.
By being honest and empathetic, you can build meaningful relationships and strong, supportive social media communities. Your first step into that is to get to know your audience and think about topics that matter to them. Always remember to reply to every single comment and message you receive in response to your ‘sensitive’ content. It will encourage users to open up and engage with your brand and, as an effect, strengthen ties between you and your social media followers.”
“When social media platforms introduce new features – like Instagram Reels or YouTube shorts – the creators and brands that jump in first tend to get a disproportionate share of the value. This is because not a lot of people use the new features right away and the platforms reward early adopters with increased exposure.
For example, today you can still grow your account by publishing YouTube Shorts or Instagram Reels, but it’s not nearly as lucrative as it was a year ago when they first launched. People were growing their followings by tens of thousands per day back then.
So given that those particular “new features” have already left the station, what new features should you be jumping on right now? For Instagram, the newest and most leveraged Instagram growth tool is Instagram Direct Message Automation. It’s been in beta for most of 2021 and was finally released this summer to Instagram accounts.”
“When it comes to building a strong social media presence in 2021, think about the purpose of every piece of content you create and post on social media. Ask yourself what’s relevant to your audience and how you can help them solve their pain points. Also remember that content quality is more important than content quantity, and engage with your followers frequently to generate a community around your brand. You can use a social media scheduling tool like Sendible to save time, and experiment with different content types to see which garner the most engagement from your audience.
Also, don’t try to be everywhere all at once – you don’t have to be present on every social media platform to make an impact. Start small and only choose the platforms that are relevant to your brand or business. Always set clear goals for your brand’s social media presence, whether that’s brand awareness, lead generation or sales. Aim for consistency and come up with a posting schedule. Don’t focus too much on what your competitors are doing – be confident enough to go your own way and be original.”
“At Influencer Marketing Hub, we know that if you want to build a strong social media presence in 2021, consistency is key. You need to post high-quality content on a regular basis. An inactive feed can really hurt your brand.
While it might sound like more work, using an editorial calendar is actually less time-consuming than posting constantly in real time. Plus, it helps to ensure that you don’t post too much of the same type of content over and over again.
You don’t need any expert tech skills to make the most of your accounts. It’s pretty straightforward: just make sure that all the information on your social media accounts is filled in. By using high-resolution images and the right keywords, your target audience will be able to find your brand more easily, and view your brand as powerful. It’s a win-win. After all, how can you build a strong presence if your brand doesn’t have authority?
Visual consistency is also important. Visual content and social media are still closely linked, and users respond much better to visual content, particularly videos. This means that your content plan should prioritize visual content like photos and videos. For example, when using video content, you can mix up pre recorded content with live videos.
Luckily, there’s a number of content creation tools that you can use to leverage illustrations, infographics, etc. For example, check out Envato Elements for a selection of templates to speed up the process. Plus, by using templates, it also makes it easier to apply a consistent style which is necessary if you want to create a strong presence.”
“If you’re new to social media, it can be hard to know what to post or which hashtags to use. You can get a report of any competitor’s feed to learn their best posts, and see what kind of content works well for your audience. You can also see which hashtags get the most engagement, and which people they’re mentioning – it’s great to know who you should be tagging and engaging with! All of this analysis can be done for your own account too, so you can see which of your own posts and hashtags worked, and which didn’t.
It’s also important to customize your content for each platform. You may think that one platform is more trendy than others right now, which makes it tempting to only focus on that. However, you should spend a while posting across all platforms, to learn what works for you. You’ll find some followers who only visit one platform, so you wouldn’t want to miss out on their engagement. One thing you absolutely must do is customize the content for each platform, as they all have different requirements. At SmarterQueue we use lots of hashtags on Instagram, write shorter posts with mentions on Twitter, add eye-catching images on Pinterest, and share long-form content on LinkedIn.”
“At EveryoneSocial we believe that to build a strong brand on social media, you need to empower your audience. People want to engage and make genuine connections with the individuals behind the company’s social handles – and not just the social media manager.
Today, 98% of employees use at least one social network, and 50% of them already post about their company (source). So if you want to build a strong and effective social media presence, you need to tap into the influence of your employees’ personal networks. It’s what employee advocacy is all about.
The most successful brands trust and empower their employees to advocate on their behalf. It’s one thing for a corporate account to share company news, promote products or services, or tout its great company culture, but it’s another thing entirely when employees themselves are sharing that content with their personal networks. That’s authentic and powerful.”
“User-generated content establishes brand loyalty, and advocates for your brand are one of your greatest assets to strengthen respect and trust among social media followers. Social media aggregators and user-generated content are ultimately essentials for your social media tool kit.
Juicer makes it super easy to curate content from your customers and followers, and then this content is harmoniously displayed on your social wall and website. Juicer curates all of those wonderful social posts into one easy feed for your website while your social media posting tools work to arrange and publish content. The content gathered from your selected social networks will be automatically refreshed by a social media aggregator. This keeps your website’s information current and gives you one less hassle to deal with during your workday.”
“Building a strong presence on social media requires you to know the channels you’re using as well as the best way of approaching them. Make sure that you communicate in a way that resonates with your target audience. Set objectives and take actions to reach them.
Don’t forget to analyze your social media marketing efforts regularly, so you can detect activities or posts that had a good impact on your business and the ones that didn’t. Ideally, you should use a tool that serves as a dedicated space where you can plan social media content, work with your team, store ideas, and create a scheduling plan – helping you make sure you’re present on all the channels that make sense for your brand.
It’s easy to achieve this with Kontentino – where you have everything you need to make your brand more visible on social media. With a streamlined and straightforward collaboration and approval process, social media marketing is a breeze.”
“Over the last five years, a mammoth 1.7 billion articles have been published online. As a result, we’ve seen a 64% rise in content when compared with 2016. But average engagement (i.e. shares, likes, comments, upvotes, pins etc.) has grown by just 14% in comparison.
If your social media presence is built on sharing content, you need to work a lot harder than you once did for your content to engage, but driving this engagement is just as much about distribution as it is about creation. The takeaway here is: don’t give up on your content. Share it for weeks and months to come. Piggyback on relevant events or trends. It just takes a single share from one influential person for your social media and content exposure to take off. You increase those chances with consistent distribution.”
“A strong social media presence is all about staying active over time. The best way to do this is through a posting calendar that allows you to brainstorm, plan, and automate.
Brainstorming for your editorial calendar enables you to have an overview of the different content ideas that you can even A/B test at one point. Think of this step as the “raw” draft of a big project where your ideas are still due to be polished. Start by putting down all your content ideas/ what you always wanted to try out for your feeds and then add filters:
Planning for those ideas that made it through the filters is where it gets intriguing. Seeing what posts will be shared on specific days will give you the chance to create a balanced mix of content that will generate higher engagement for your accounts.
Automating is the last step where you can use a social media management tool like SocialBee.io to create workflows for your posts to be published across multiple channels. A social media management tool, combined with a social listening tool and analytics tool will 100% power up your social media efforts in 2021.”
And there you have it! The top tips for building a strong social media presence, right from the mouths of some of the top experts in the game. If you want to brush up on more social media tools, tips and trends, check out our Social Media Marketing Guide and our Social Media Trends for 2021. Or, for more helpful interviews and advice from those in the know, head to our Community Stories category.