Social media is constantly evolving, and it is taking digital marketing along for the ride. It can be difficult to keep up with the trends and develop winning marketing strategies which are future proof but making the right tips into habits can improve your metrics and the success of your campaigns.
Read Publications and Blogs
Reading the most recent changes in industry publications for both social media and digital marketing, as well as dedicated blogs, can help keep you in the loop and give you insight into where your campaigns should be headed. This insight can spark the right innovation to succeed, show you industry leaders you may not have known about and much more. When you sign up for email newsletters, you can even keep abreast of the newest developments each morning when you open your inbox. It is a good idea to subscribe to sites and blogs who post testimonials and reviews for the industries you work with as well. For instance, reading Le-Vel Thrive reviews can show you how that product is being received and marketed online.
Follow Industry Leaders on Social Media
Following industry leaders for digital marketing, as well as the companies you work with, on social media can give you an idea of who the best influencers are, what types of posts and marketing get the most interactions and even what the latest developments are. This gives you access to more articles and blog posts than you would normally see in your feed as well as tips, tricks and networking contacts.
Determine Real ROI
Since social media has become established as a place where people hang out online to see both organic and paid content, you can start to determine what the return on investment is for social media marketing campaigns. Consider how much traffic is diverted from those campaigns to your site and what the conversion rates are, how much you spend on this type of marketing and how broad your reach is to find the ROI as well as determine where you should grow social marketing use in the future.
Sign Up for a Course
There are both online and in-person classes teaching the use of social media as an individual, brand and marketer. These can show you some best practices, how to use various features offered by each program and even forecast future trends. Some courses can offer you certifications or credits you can list on your resume for future jobs.
Find a Mentor
Finding a mentor in the field of digital marketing can expand your knowledge beyond the benefit of having his or her experience guide you, it means you are twice as likely to find the newest developments in the use of social media in marketing campaigns. This is because your mentor is probably already reading relevant journals, blogs and posts and will pass anything learned from those sources on to you. You can even split the list with him or her to cover more ground in your research. Your mentor can also tell you the best places to look for updates and help you determine which trends are the best to watch.
Focus on the Right Platforms
The platforms where you focus your social media marketing campaigns should reflect the values and goals of your business. For instance, if you are marketing to photographers, then a social media platform based on pictures like Instagram, Pinterest and Ello is where you should be. Reducing the number of platforms in your campaign can bring a better ROI when you are limiting your focus to a targeted demographic.
LinkedIn and Google Alerts
You can tailor your LinkedIn Pulse and Google Alerts tools to show you the latest updates on topics which are important to you such as how marketing and social media are changing or what the latest trends are. You can also use the LinkedIn Influencer program to find advice from industry leaders and narrow your Google News by region or industry for more directed results.
Trade Shows and Conventions
Trade shows and conventions are one of the best ways to network with other marketing professionals, see what the competition is bringing to the table and hear from industry experts on the trends to watch. Some companies will even wait until these events to make big announcements, roll out new tools and release new platform features, so attending the presentations by influential companies and speakers can help you keep up with the trends.
Find the Right Influencers
Finding the right influencers to partner with is about more than just looking at follower counts. Sometimes it is someone with a thousand followers and a more targeted audience who can spike your sales rather than the person with a broader base of ten thousand. Find social media influencers with a follower base and focus similar to your brand, who uses products like yours in innovative ways, or who appeals to the demographics you want to market to for the best success.
Get Serious About Analytics and Metrics
Analytics and metrics will show you what the market is doing, how your campaigns are performing and even which social media platforms host the biggest numbers of your demographics. Getting serious about using these tools and techniques means checking them often, using them on your audience as well as your efforts and even analyzing how internal processes and procedures are affecting your customer base. For instance, if you notice a drop in sales among young adults, you can use analytics to see that they have a problem with the sustainability of your supply chain and take steps to fix the issues.
Social media is a powerful marketing tool, but it is changing the digital marketing techniques, tools and tricks that you use to advertise your products or those of your customers almost daily. To keep up with these changes and even forecast future trends, it is important to gather the right information from a variety of sources. This includes reading publications and blogs, following industry leaders and influencers on various platforms and using analytics to make better predictions.