30 second summary:
- Even if you have a small marketing budget, you can compete with larger competitors.
- To be able to navigate social media well, you need to improve your social listening and online investigative skills to find out which topics are relevant to your core audience.
- Success requires grasping trends early on with a creative and positive attitude.
- Arjun Rai describes four strategies for learning to navigate the changing social media landscape.
It’s no secret that social media is marketing trends change quickly. You might see a hashtag on TikTok before you go to bed, but when you wake up everyone is talking about a new hashtag or meme on Twitter. Is it any wonder that small business marketers need a way to safely navigate social media?
Certainly, small businesses and startups can find it difficult to put more than a few hundred dollars into a social media marketing strategy. In addition, many entrepreneurs lack the experience and expertise to identify current trends and take advantage of these topics in real time, unlike large competitors with unlimited marketing budgets and staff.
The good news is that a successful digital marketing strategy is being developed is possible, and it doesn’t have to grunt or cost more than a cup of coffee a day. It just takes innovation. (In other words, even if you have a small marketing budget, you can compete with the biggest competitors – #yougotthis.)
Reveal the secrets of digital marketing
If you spend time on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other social media platform, you’ve probably seen trends pop up out of nowhere. The options may seem overwhelming, but you can’t afford to wait to see what’s inside. You need to step in and offer relevant content that outshines other chatters before the topic shifts. Agility is the game.
To navigate social media, you need to improve your social listening and online investigation skills. Determine where to start by asking, “What will be relevant to my core audience?” A great way to find out is to see what your strongest competitor’s social media marketing strategy is like. Does the company use certain hashtags or emojis? Which contributions got the most engagement?
No matter what, kick the “first one!” Audience (aka early adopters) is a win. This goes for everything: memes, emoji, hashtags, social platforms, etc. If the trend starts, you’ll become an early adopter and gain more brand awareness. When it hisses, learn from experience and prepare for the next trend. All you need to keep going is creativity and a positive attitude. Plus, the platforms themselves can reward you.
How to navigate social media
Does digital marketing still seem daunting? Here are four strategies you can use to learn how to navigate social media:
1. Spend up to 10% of marketing resources on new social media platforms
Did TikTok sneak out of nowhere? You may not have noticed the signs of growth. Do not worry; It won’t be the last social media platform to launch.
Start by researching new social media platforms and spend about 5% to 10% of your marketing budget there. Learn how they work and find out where your company could fit in. At the same time, devote the rest of your efforts to popular platforms like Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. With your “portfolio” split like this, you won’t lose too much when a new company takes a nosedive.
2. Run A / B tests on your content
Split tests different types of copies, hashtags, graphics, videos, and images to see what works well. When you’ve figured out what is performing the best, make it 90% of your strategy. You can keep iterating and experiment with the remaining 10%.
Remember, it’s okay to vomit up content to some degree. Rotate existing content to a new angle and reuse other people’s videos and pictures. Don’t forget to include the original creator if possible. Memes, in particular, require very little editing. All you need is a popular format and a pithy label.
3. Ask for help – real or digital
You can’t spend all of your time learning how to increase brand awareness on social media. Find ways to aggregate and automate your digital marketing to efficiently keep up with trends.
In his book, Traffic Secrets, Russell Brunson talks about trying Instagram with his influencer friends. This group approach can reduce your workload. Find partners to create content and share insights with, or rely on digital marketing automation tools to identify trends and schedule posts.
4. Avoid the “quick win” mentality
Social media trends come and go, but winning the digital marketing game is a long-term goal. It can take months or years for your account to launch on a new platform as well.
So stay positive and move on. When you see significant success, you will be recognized as an early adopter or long-term user on the road. Also, because of your convenience with the platform, you will be better able to stay ahead of trends.
Social media has proven to be a great balance, allowing young businesses to compete with larger companies for followers and engagement. By following these four strategies, you can make better use of social media trends this year and find your social pace.
Arjun Rai is the founder and CEO of HelloWoofy, an artificial intelligence-based social media and blog management platform that helps small businesses (or, as he likes to say, “outsider marketers”) do intelligent marketing for the digital Age helps. You can find him on Twitter @arjunraime.