Guest post by Evelyn Foreman
Social Media Marketing
Tips to Increase Your
Organic Reach and Break Through The Noise
One of the most effective ways to get your message out on social media is through creating awesome content for your website, blogs and social posts.
Content is king and is a major buzzword. Content is the product of your entire organization - from your core content (the programs and services you offer) to social content (what you share with the outside world), all tells a story about your brand.
Your message in the content provides a way and a means to attract the right and perfect customer to you without digging too deep into your pocketbook.
Content marketing, along with smart SEO (Search engine optimization) enables everyone to get their message out in a way that is similar to advertising in that it gets to the people who want to know about it organically.
In the same way, platform algorithms delivers relevant content and social messages to those interested. If the content you create that speaks directly to the needs and desires of an end user, you will get a similar net effect as paying to advertise.
These 6 easy, MUST DO actionable steps you need to take on social media will prove invaluable, whether you decide to go with posting organically, or brand posting, or a combination of both.
STEP 1: HAVE A PLAN
The first actionable step is to have a plan. A fundamental tenant in good business and good life skills is to have a plan. If you don't know and map how to get where you want, you will waste a lot of time and probably never get there!
You need to have time frames in place as part of your social media plan and strategy. Not having a solid social media plan in place, set for at least 3 to 6 months ahead, is like swimming in a stormy sea with no particular destination. Soon, you will be treading water and then, you will probably drown.
Without a clear plan and measurable action steps, the destination gets cloudy and our energy and motivation to succeed will fail. A plan of execution and solid measurable numbers are the benchmarks to evaluate marketing results and feed your energy. When we know we are making clear and planned progress, we are inspired and motivated to great success.
STEP 2: KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
The second actionable step is to know your audience. Deciding on content requires a strong understanding of your brand identity. This also requires that you know who your specific target audience is and what to them, is share-worthy. A universal law in this topsy-turvy world is that "Like Attracts Like." People of the same beliefs come together in places such as churches, political forums or other social gatherings. This is true online as well.
Chat rooms attract people of similar likes and beliefs. The bottom line is that the message, service or product you believe in is already attractive to others who embrace similar beliefs as you. Your job is to get your message to them.
As each person is an individual, one person may use a different language or syntax than another. Where this is the case, they may never see your message online because of the precise and exclusionary nature syntax (words). That is to say, where you normally use the word "God," maybe a giant community out there use "higher power" instead of "God."
Your philosophy and beliefs may be extremely similar with the exception of the use of the syntax "God" versus "Higher power". Because of that difference, the massive community that would benefit from your service or product just simply never knows it exists. At the end of the day, nobody wins. Because you haven't taken the time to know your potential audience, they will never know you or your product or service.
STEP 3: DECIDE ON CONTENT
Once you know who you are speaking to, be sure to have in your plan the type of content that might appeal to your target audience. This is the third actionable step.
Having relatable, easy to understand content that is familiar and comfortable to your target audience will serve them and you too in new and exciting ways that you may not have yet even considered yet.
The process of learning the language and syntax of those you are seeking to serve expands your ability to better serve and cater to the needs and desires of your audience.
STEP 4: CREATE THE CONTENT
Once you decide on what content you will use to post on your social media platforms, it's time to create the content! Creating content is the fourth actionable step. Your marketing mix should reflect your business, your brand, and speak directly to your target audience in the language(s) that resonate with them.
Most successful content marketers utilize blogs as a key ingredient in the foundation to attraction marketing. In the same way, cement is a key ingredient to form concrete in the foundation of a structure, blogs are a key ingredient to form Community in marketing. Combining attractive and professional graphics, quotes and downloadable tools create the balance of ingredients to form a solid foundation for your brand.
Like ingredients in a recipe or foundation, if you want the optimal outcome, you must know the portions necessary. Informing your community foundation for your business, product, or brand, you must have the right mix.
A dependable rule of thumb, for example, is the 80/20 rule in marketing. That is 80% of the time provide information that will serve your target audience while 20% of the time is used to promote your services, products, and or programs.
Some people fear the process of creating content. My advice though is embracing it. The reason you are in the business you are in is hopefully because you love it. If this is the case, creating content is both fun and exciting.
The downside, of course, is that it can take a lot of time. You want your content to be attractive and engaging. This obviously competes with all the other things you need to do as an entrepreneur such as business development, returning calls, and setting strategy. Don't worry though, you can still do it!
As an entrepreneur or a solopreneur, a strategy must come into play here by either sitting down rolling up your sleeves and creating all of your content or hire someone else to do this for you. At this point in time with the evolution of business, it is time to jump in and make these new and evolving tools work for you! It may seem overwhelming but if you do not get started, tomorrow you will be exactly where you are today. As a very wise man once said, "the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."
STEP 5: POSTING YOUR CONTENT
Assuming that you are creating the content on your own, it is now time to put it out in the world! Posting your social media content is the fifth actionable step. In the spirit of getting this done as efficiently and consistently as possible, my very strong recommendation is to post a whole month’s worth of content in one sitting. This is done through software that will automatically post your selected content in the way and at the time you prescribe.
At the end of each month, before the beginning of another, make a commitment to sit down and simply post all of your social media content into your scheduling software which will, in turn, post your content to the places you want it posted all over the following month. This type of system eliminates the need for you to interrupt your schedule multiple times per day to post to the internet thereby optimizing your time and effort, not to mention your sanity!
The native scheduler on Facebook is wonderful to pre-post content a month or months at a time so that on the day the posting goes up, you can simply be present to engage with the comments and feedback that you received from the community.
Other commercial software is available as well that allows you to customize approach in most any way you like. If you choose to use a scheduler, it may streamline a lot of things for you as you can schedule on multiple social media platforms at once.
STEP 6: RESPOND TO THE CONTENT
Lastly, and possibly most important, as you get engagement from your social media postings, you must be responsive. Responding to the content that you post is the six actionable steps. Engaging with your audience may be the most important thing you can do to grow your social media presence and your ideal community.
If you are building a community in person and your peeps are attempting to interact with you, the fastest way to offend them and run them off is to ignore them. Nobody wants to make an effort to engage only to be ignored. You absolutely must make yourself available and respond to comments.
At the end of the day, the human experience, whether virtual or in person, is about connecting to one another. In building your business, you are building your community. If someone engages with you, they are offering you a compliment, they are effectively saying that you are worth my time.
If they buy something from you, in a sense, they are saying they trust you and in some cases, they are even expressing a sense of affection for you. If you ignore them, it is rejection and can be insulting. My very strong recommendation to you is to engage; let them know they are valuable to you too. If you do, you will be more successful and in a meaningful way, you make this world a better place to be.
At face value: These six easy, actionable steps you need to take on social media are simple and easy to implement:
Make a plan - Got to know where you are going.
Know your audience - the more you know, the better you can serve.
Decide on content - Speak their language.
Create content - offer a gift of knowledge, new perspective, or awesome tools.
Post the content - If you don't communicate regularly with attractive and meaningful posts,
it gets lost in the masses.
Respond to the content - These are your peeps, love them back!
In order for it to break through the algorithms set in place by the social media platforms, it is really important that the steps are taken daily, on a consistent basis for organic reach to go further.
At this point, organic reach for brands may not be as lucrative as a personal post. However, the effort we take in mindfully implementing these five steps does not simply create organic reach for our brand, it also makes sense.
About the author: Evelyn Foreman, Founder and CEO of www.pathofpresence.com.
She offers insightful tips on what you should be doing to to get your blog or business noticed through the sea of social media. Her mission is to help heart-centered entrepreneurs stay positive, present, and inspired, as they grow our business and following online.