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How can I get better results from social media marketing?

At Dream Local Digital, we get this question all the time from businesses that are seeking assistance on how to get a stronger return on their investment with social media. Among other things, social media marketing is an excellent tool for building brand awareness, providing customer service, and for sales. To make it work though, you need to think out of the box. You need to find creative ways to tell the story of your business.

Here are some of the common questions we receive:

What channel is the right one for me?

What’s the best time of day to post to blogs or social networks – and why? This is actually a VERY tough question to answer because it truly depends on the business, and who your target audiences are. You have to think about who you are speaking to in all of the work you do, and when THEY are available much more so than the specific channel. At Dream Local Digital, we monitor best practices, engagement and results of all of the content we post on these channels, and while we see patterns in some cities, they are different in others. And we see patterns with specific general audience types (busy moms, for example). There are no hard and fast rules here. The key is to monitor your post activity and engagement, test new timing, and see what performs the best.

What kinds of posts should I do? Again, it depends on who you’re targeting. It always comes back to speaking to your audience and relating to them. Like any other personal interaction, you don’t want every conversation you have to be just about sales. We try hard to create a strong mix of posts to build brand awareness (encouraging people to identify with and share your content is the strongest play here), build sales (calls to action are critical here – think what do I want my reader to do most?), educate and/or inform consumers (anytime you can make someone’s life easier or empower them is a winner), and the personal touch (information about your business, the faces behind your company, your customers, or light hearted posts).

Do some posts work better than others? The human brain can process images or video 60,000 times faster than text, so any time you can utilize an image or video link you will receive upwards of 65% better lift on your post, and this is true across all social networks. When you work on your content planning, think about the channel, the audience, and tailor your posts for them – short for Twitter, longer for Facebook or LinkedIn, hashtag strategies for all. The most important piece is to have a plan that reflects the voice and marketing goals of the business, and make sure that you listen on all networks and respond to what consumers are saying. Each channel you start is like adding a phone line, and they need to be answered. For one of our clients, we’re answering more than 12,000 inquiries or comments each year.

Do you answer when people mention you, leave a review, or an inquiry? If you can’t do it on your own, find someone who can help you and who has the experience and know-how to do it right. Let us know if you need help.

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