2017 is shaping up to be one of social media's biggest years yet. Facebook continues to grow at an incredible pace, with Snapchat, Instagram, and YouTube not far behind. Live streaming is gaining popularity and on-demand internet video traffic is skyrocketing.
You can't get too comfortable in the social media marketing arena. Being a great marketer, business owner or decision maker in any role of growth in business these days means getting used to a continuously evolving landscape. If you can keep up to date, you'll have an edge over your competition.
You need to become fluent in the art of using imagery to convey your brand's message. Text-only posts just won't cut it in the modern age of digital marketing.
With so many social media platforms to keep up with, you shouldn't try to create all of your own material. Instead, get comfortable with free photo banks. These websites offer thousands of professional images that your brand can freely use on social media.
Armed with free professional images and a good content strategy, you'll be able to spread the word far and wide about your brand.
There are 40 million small business pages on Facebook, yet only four million of them are taking advantage of paid ads. As Gary Vaynerchuk would say, this is a huge marketing arbitrage opportunity. Facebook ads are proven to give a great ROI on your marketing spend.
It is important to do your research and set clear goals before you invest into Facebook advertising. Pick a single key metric and put all of your energy towards improving that number. If you use Facebook ads properly, you'll be able to out-market the competition on the world's largest social media network.
One reason for Facebook's massive success is social media addiction. Though Mark Zuckerberg won't admit it, the entire platform is designed to suck you in and keep you hooked. There's always something new when you load up the news feed.
Your brand can use this daily Facebook habit to your advantage. Post at least one new Facebook update per day, even if you don't feel like there is anything exciting to talk about.
When your brand is in the news feed every single day, your Facebook audience will get used to having you around. If your online content is consistent enough, your fans will start looking forward to each day's post. This is how you build an engaged fanbase on Facebook.
Mobile phones are becoming the most popular choice for watching videos online. This has serious implications for the kinds of videos you should use in your social media marketing campaigns.
When your audience watches your video on a phone, they miss out on the visual details. Small text will be impossible to read, and any audio issues will be exacerbated by the use of earbuds or phone speakers. You want to make concise, high quality videos that will be enjoyable even under these circumstances.
If at all possible, add captions to your videos. That way, if somebody is watching on a phone and doesn't have headphones, they can still understand what is being said.
If you think Twitter is dead, think again. Despite a lot of media hoopla regarding the imminent demise of the micro-blogging service, Twitter is still thriving in the crucial millennial market. Young adults have grown accustomed to tweeting throughout the day.
It's hard to find the right balance for your Twitter schedule. Resist the urge to spend hours scheduling dozens of tweets, unless you've got a huge social media team that can handle the workload. Instead, focus on Twitter as a platform for fan engagement. Most millennials expect to hear a response when they tweet at a brand, so make sure you're ready to reply.
Want to reach the 13-18 and 18-35 year old market segments? Instagram is the key. Young adults and teenagers are using the platform on a daily basis, spending an average of more than 20 minutes per day browsing their feed. That's way more time than they spend on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.
Your brand should be posting at least once per day on Instagram. Hashtags are powerful on this service, so take a few hours to find the best ones for your brand. Respond to all comments on your Instagram posts and you'll start to cultivate a community around your photos.
You should keep an eye on these statistics as time goes on. If you can spot trends before your competition does, you can outperform them on social media.
Don't be fooled by flashy mass-media stories about the rise or demise of major social media platforms. The real information is usually less exciting and more technical than your average blog wants to talk about. If you can avoid the hype, you'll be in a great position to leverage social media trends for the rest of 2017.