Not only does social media need to be part of your inbound approach — it needs it to be at the frontline of your inbound strategy. Social media is where your customers consume content, formulate an opinion of your brand, and buy your products.
Below I’ve explained why your brand needs a social inbound strategy, along with providing some useful links to resources that will help you develop your brand’s social strategy right away.
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Inbound content marketing
Social commerce is worth billions — it’s a subset of content marketing that you simply cannot ignore.
There are a number of great reasons to make social media a vital component of your inbound content marketing:
- Your social media accounts raise awareness of your brand: When you shout about your brand to your followers you get to shout to their followers too
- Your social channels build trust for your brand: 58% of consumers share positive experiences of a brand via their social accounts. And your followers trust social reviews nearly as much as recommendations from their friends and family
- Your social platforms are part of your sales funnel: 80% of the US population has at least one social media account. 75% of people use their social media account as part of their buying process. Give your customers what they want by making your social media accounts a place where they can buy your goods
Your customers want to consume your content via social media — to make it easy for them.
Check out the video below for more information on how to make your social media accounts part of your inbound marketing:
Many brands think their social media accounts are separate from the other parts of their inbound content strategy. Brands often make social content an afterthought, or a way to get their users on to their website.
This is wrong. Your videos, blogs, UGC, and all other types of content, need to work in tandem with your social media accounts if you want a successful strategy. In fact, you can build an entire content funnel just on social media.
To make sure you are giving your customers what they want, there are a few tactics you can employ:
- Use social listening to find out what your customers want
- Review the platforms which have the best engagement figures
- Develop the right tone
You’ll find even more top-tips on how to make your social media accounts a living and breathing content weapon in this great article.
Raise awareness with broad target ads
If you’re searching for a new customer base (and why would you close off your potential revenue streams by not doing this?) you can raise awareness of your brand by using social advertising.
Start broad with some ads that raise awareness. This is your top of the funnel stuff. Keep it light and value-led and don’t go in with the hard sells. Instead, you want to let your customers know you are an option, that you are providing a solution.
Cole & Coddle is a family and baby store who specializes in novelty gear. In two years the brand has gone from nothing to being one of the premier businesses currently for sale on Exchange. It’s a testament to the work of done by the two owners. A big part of how they’ve got their success is through their broad-target social media advertising.
Offer your desired audience an incentive by including an offer in your ads:
Credit: Cole + Coddle
Once you’ve got your audience interested, you need to make sure the rest of your sales funnel converts. Check out the video below for some great guidance on how to create a winning sales funnel:
While social media advertising is hugely valuable to your business, you can’t just turn your social channels into a forum to hit your customers with sales tactics. You need to keep your audience interested and engaged. In order to do that you need to give them value for their time.
You can make your social media accounts a source of useful and valuable information by pushing out tutorial content and guides. These are some of the most engaging types of content.
By using a tool like Ahrefs you can work out what kind of tutorial content and guides your customers want from you. Combine tools like Ahrefs with analytics, and your tutorials and guides will offer real value to your customers.
Just remember, push out tutorial content and guides — but don’t just use social to share blog content, create native social content that will help keep people engaged as they scroll on LinkedIn (for example).
Your customers and users expect you to be available and present on all channels — especially social. It’s the frontline of your inbound strategy and offers you the chance to connect with your customers in real time all of the time. Take the advice from this article and use it to start developing your brand’s social inbound strategy today.
Victoria Greene is a branding consultant and freelance writer. On her blog, VictoriaEcommerce, you’ll find articles on inbound, outbound, and topics that will shake your social strategy all about. Victoria takes a keen interest in all things digital.