Whether you’re sitting on a bus, at work, on a beach in Hawaii, or in a Doctor’s office waiting room, the world of social media is at your fingertips and you’re most likely tapping into it… unless you’re in Hawaii, maybe the lush tropical scenery is enough to distract you from your social feed. But then you would want to share it with your friends on Facebook or Instagram right? This is the norm in 2017. More than half the population check social media between 1 and 20+ times a day while Facebook, Australia’s largest social network receives approximately 13 million unique local visits per month –this is over 57% of our total population*.
With so much social activity on a daily basis, 40% of retail purchase decisions are influenced, with social media users 26% more likely to purchase than non-users*. Social media is no longer something that some people have and some don’t, it is engrained into society as a primary method of communication and connection. And it’s not just millennials who are on board, in fact 93% of Australians aged 30 – 64 are on Facebook and 52% check their socials at least once per day**. As Tony Robbins demonstrates, connection is one of our six basic human needs and we will take advantage of any opportunity that takes connection to the next level, which is what social platforms do for us.
What does this mean for your business? It means it’s the perfect time to step up your social media plan and take action so you can begin reaping the benefits. Leveraging the positive opportunities that our ever-connected world provides can help you win hearts and minds.
The Social Media Channel Challenge
With so many social media channels and capabilities out there, there is a strategy and channel that will reach your target audience and meet your objectives, however it can be a challenge to identify what that is for you. We believe there is no standard social formula that will work for everyone, so we create strategies specific to each of our clients’ target audiences and objectives. For example, if visuals are your strength you may share them through Instagram or Pinterest, whereas if your objective is to engage business professionals, LinkedIn social selling should be your focus.
Below we’ve outlined three essential trends that will continue to grow and become widely successful for marketers in the year ahead. Keep these in mind when developing your own social media strategy and adapt them in a way that resonates with your target audience.
Regardless of which social channels you employ, starting a meaningful conversation will strengthen the interactions you have with your audience. Consider the values held by your customers and tap into these when creating your message. If you want a reaction from your audience, talk their language and don’t be afraid to stir them up with topics they are most passionate about. This will help your customers trust you. Donald Trump used this technique in his successful social campaign #makeamericagreatagain, while the feminine hygiene brand ‘Always’ created their #likeagirl campaign around gender inequality to engage their female audience.
We want real time and we want it now
You may have already noticed a pattern forming around real time video. It began with the phenomenon of Snapchat and was quickly leveraged by Facebook as they introduced ‘stories’ on Facebook and Instagram. This allows users to share a quick unfiltered video or snap with their followers, deepening their connection with a more personal dynamic than traditional social media posts provide.
Twitter’s Periscope takes ‘stories’ a step further with video livestreaming and Facebook have recently jumped on this bandwagon too, integrating livestreaming features into Facebook and Instagram.
This is online social connection at its finest; being able to create immediate content and receive your audience’s feedback via instant messages while you’re live. This trend can be leveraged by using an influencer to promote your product or service in their live video stream, taking a live video at your special event or to have a live Q and A with your followers.
Harness the power of the influencer
Remember it doesn’t just have to be your own social presence and content that counts. If there are social media influencers with the same target market as you (which there almost always are) why not leverage their existing following and ability to create content by tapping into influencer marketing and asking them to promote you? For example, if you’re marketing a health food product, reach out to health and lifestyle influencers to try your product and promote it in a video or social post.
2017 is the year to transform your connection with your audience to the next level with the power of social media. If you want support in your journey to social success email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 1800 737 266 for a casual chat.
Check out our eBook: 5 Steps to Social Selling to learn how to build long lasting customer relationships with social media.
*Deloitte Digital (2015) Navigating the New Digital Divide. Digital Influence in Australian Retail