Social media has forever changed the way businesses and customers communicate. Your customers, no matter what business you own, are on social media – that is a fact. In 2017, 81% of U.S. Americans had a social media profile and that number is growing rapidly already in 2018. Your customers are here and you need to be too! Interacting with customers online is how brands retain their customers and capture new ones. If you’re not interacting and engaging with your customers on social media, your competitor will!
SMMS market growth. The global social media management software market is expected to grow by around 15% from the year 2017 to 2021, this forecast includes both on-premise and cloud-based SMMS. However, an increase in the use of cloud-based SMMS is see as more likely as businesses have been moving their information technology resources from on-premise to cloud-based platforms. This is being done as a means to minimize organizations’ IT spendings while upgrading their infrastructure.

A brand can have far better success with a relevant vlogger with 50k subscribers rather than an influencer with 2m fans. This change comes from the changing algorithms, the users’ cautiousness when it comes to fake stories, and the genuine need of belonging in a community. People have more chances to connect with an everyday blogger who found growing success rather than a top model who may be working with multiple brands every week.
Jodi Harris is the Director of Editorial Content & Curation at Content Marketing Institute. As a content strategy consultant, Jodi helps businesses evaluate their content needs and resources; build infrastructure and operations; and create compelling stories to be delivered across multiple media channels and platforms. Follow Jodi on Twitter at @Joderama.
Komfo is now part of Falcon.io. Falcon is a SaaS platform for social media marketers. It combines social media listening, engaging, publishing, measuring and data management tools in one easy-to-use suite. We help businesses to explore the full potential of digital marketing by managing multiple customer touchpoints from one platform. You will love the easy-to-use UI, backed by stellar support.
Running a social media marketing campaign is only one part of the equation. The other part is tracking it to see if it is effectively working for you. You cannot make the mistake of making any assumptions when it comes successful social media marketing. You should know whether a tactic is giving you results or not before you start losing money. Because after all, you need a positive return on investment from your marketing.
Today, people create profiles on every social media channel available with the aim of reaching as many people as possible. Unfortunately, with that mindset, you will not reach your chosen target audience. As a result, it is key you look at your buyer personas when choosing your social media channels. For example, you won't necessarily need a LinkedIn profile if you are launching a gothic clothing brand; the same as you won't need to be on Pinterest to promote your surveillance services.
It's a good idea to start with a plan that has goals and an organizing framework to keep you on track. If you start down a path on the social Web and hate what you're doing, you can change things around. Just as you change networking and conversational approaches in person, you can do so on the social Web. The only differences are that on the social Web, you're talking through your keyboard, and your potential audience is much, much larger.
In 2012 during Hurricane Sandy, Gap sent out a tweet to its followers telling them to stay safe but encouraged them to shop online and offered free shipping. The tweet was deemed insensitive, and Gap eventually took it down and apologized.[101] Numerous additional online marketing mishap examples exist. Examples include a YouTube video of a Domino's Pizza employee violating health code standards, which went viral on the Internet and later resulted in felony charges against two employees.[98][102] A Twitter hashtag posted by McDonald's in 2012 attracting attention due to numerous complaints and negative events customers experienced at the chain store; and a 2011 tweet posted by a Chrysler Group employee that no one in Detroit knows how to drive.[103] When the Link REIT opened a Facebook page to recommend old-style restaurants, the page was flooded by furious comments criticizing the REIT for having forced a lot of restaurants and stores to shut down; it had to terminate its campaign early amid further deterioration of its corporate image.[104]
Hootsuite gives customers a wide scope of controlling and managing their social media activity, by enabling them to manage all their social networks and schedule messages for future publishing. Hootsuite's best-in-class social media monitoring tools allow users to see comments about their on-display brands. Hootsuite's social media analytics give an in-depth view of how well the user’s social media efforts are being received, so they can choose the better of what is working or change directions. Adding multiple Team Members feature makes sharing the workload easier because it manages social media well. Vitals like reputations, assets, and financials etc being…

Unlike the channels above, Pinterest has a clearly defined user base consisting mostly (70%) of women with disposable income. It's not for every brand, but it's a product-friendly platform for those are a good fit. If you’re in the fashion, handcrafts, or home decor space, you’d be missing out an opportunity to get traffic and sales here through both organic and paid tactics.


Aside from this, SMMS can help businesses where team collaboration is required. Shared inboxes are a common thing with SMMS systems, allowing individuals to send messages to the right people. Such software also help provide brand security by allowing but trusted staff to send messages to corporate social profiles. Inappropriate messages sent are easily tracked and can be dealt with accordingly. In the same manner, unauthorized content that can adversely impact a brand can also be prevented.
Because social is so critical to building strong brands, it’s important for your team to maximize how they use it (and what tools they use) to make that job easier. There are plenty of free social media tools out there to help your team save time and money. To stay current on those options, check out the updated list below of eight free tools that can simplify your team’s social media marketing:
If you decide to measure the number of leads generated through social media marketing, we advise adding a unique discount code to your social media posts — this will help you to understand how you acquired your customers. If you see that a discount code from a specific post on social media is being used more than others, it’s a good indicator that said content resonates well with your audience.

5. Define communications strategy. In the social media era, a continuous communications strategy is necessary to engage your audience through the many channels available. Key issues here are defining the types of content value you offer through different social channels and the frequency. Integrating different digital channels including email marketing through a social media marketing hub is also a key issue here.

Volume is by far the simplest social media metric that you should be measuring. Why? Because it’s not complicated to understand what level of volume (the size of your campaign) is giving you results. One thing that you should be aiming for with your social media marketing is generating interest from your ideal customer. In other words, you want more of your target audience to talk about your brand and/or your overall campaign.
If you decide to measure the number of leads generated through social media marketing, we advise adding a unique discount code to your social media posts — this will help you to understand how you acquired your customers. If you see that a discount code from a specific post on social media is being used more than others, it’s a good indicator that said content resonates well with your audience.
Engagement in social media for the purpose of a social media strategy is divided into two parts. The first is proactive, regular posting of new online content (digital photos, digital videos, text) and conversations, as well as the sharing of content and information from others via weblinks. The second part is reactive conversations with social media users responding to those who reach out to your social media profiles through commenting or messaging[22] Traditional media such as TV news shows are limited to one-way interaction with customers or 'push and tell' where only specific information is given to the customer with few or limited mechanisms to obtain customer feedback. Traditional media such as paper newspapers, of course, do give readers the option of sending a letter to the editor, but this is a relatively slow process, as the editorial board has to review the letter and decide if it is appropriate for publication. On the other hand, social media is participative and open, as participants are able to instantly share their views on brands, products, and services. Traditional media gave control of message to the marketer, whereas social media shifts the balance to the consumer (or citizen).

Several customers are turning towards social media to express their appreciation or frustration with brands, product or services. Therefore, marketers can measure the frequency of which customers are discussing their brand and judge how effective their SMM strategies are. In recent studies, 72% of people surveyed expressed that they expected a response to their complaints on Twitter within an hour.[116]
When you’re establishing goals for your social media marketing plan, we advise against selecting vanity metrics (likes / retweets) as your main metric for success. Whilst these are nice to see, and worthwhile to measure, they don’t directly affect your business’ growth. Instead, we recommend measure metrics that are likely to lead to sales, like leads generated, or conversion rate
A planning calendar lays the foundation and ensures you are maintaining your social sites and posting on a regular basis.  Of course, you can also post other news, tips and ideas as they arise.  The biggest pitfall businesses run into are they generally have a lot of excitement when they first establish their social media presence, but the momentum quickly fades.  Having a monthly planning calendar will help keep your social media efforts moving forward.
Hootsuite provides a more complete solution that allows you to schedule updates and monitor conversations, whereas Buffer isn’t a dashboard that shows you other people’s content. However, Bufferapp has superior scheduling flexibility over Hootsuite because you can designate very specific scheduling times and change patterns throughout the week. Hootsuite recently introduced an autoschedule feature that automatically designates a scheduling time based on a projected best time to post. This can be effective to use, but doesn’t have the same flexibility as Buffer since you don’t really know when a post will be scheduled till after doing so.
Social Media Marketing brings new rules and opportunities to increase the awareness, profitability, and overall lifeline of your brand. A further understanding of your consumers, how they communicate, the experiences they’re looking to have, and where they’re located digitally is crucial.  Your social media strategy will affect the chances of winning new customers, retaining current customers, future business expansion opportunities, talented employees, and better products. But don’t take the short way out. If at first you don’t succeed, don’t give up. Stray away from being comfortable and what’s safe. Social media is a marathon, not a sprint.
Social media marketing is a powerful way for businesses of all sizes to reach prospects and customers. Your customers are already interacting with brands through social media, and if you're not speaking directly to your audience through social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, you're missing out! Great marketing on social media can bring remarkable success to your business, creating devoted brand advocates and even driving leads and sales.
Popular social media such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social networks can provide marketers with a hard number of how large their audience is nevertheless a large audience may not always translate into a large sales volumes. Therefore, an effective SMM cannot be measured by a large audience but rather by vigorous audience activity such as social shares, re-tweets etc.
Buffer is wonderfully simple and effective at its primary purpose; scheduling posts to go out to multiple social accounts. This is great for saving you time and to allow you to post when your audience is online. However the anaylitics that come with the free version are very basic so are not brilliant for optimising your posts. I would thus recommend using other tools to gather data on the success of your posts if you don’t want to pay for Buffer’s “Awesome plan”.
SumALL is a social media engagement and analytics tracking tool which enables users to know their audience, reach, post activity and engagement data in Facebook page, Instagram profile, and Twitter account. The features of SumAll are metric service, data reports, SumAll Insights, analytics dashboard, campaign export, visuals and pivot tables, audience segmentation and daily digest email. Users can integrate multiple social sources (Facebook, Twitter) and get information around the engagement that they have with their end-users. SumALL measures, grows and optimizes all important ROIs from social media. SumAll Insights will show users when to post, how to post, what to…
There has been an increase in social media marketing in sport, as sports teams and clubs recognise the importance of keeping a rapport with their fans and other audiences through social media.[117] Sports personalities such as Cristiano Ronaldo have 40.7 million followers on Twitter and 49.6 million on Instagram, creating opportunities for endorsements.[118]
Publishing & RSS – Buffer has the basic publishing features such as scheduling and adding posts to a queue but it is not made for evergreen posts. Meaning, it will not let you upload hundreds of posts and then recycle them, or publish them on your social media until you tell it to stop. It does have the RSS feed that helps you publish posts from blogs.
You’ve got a lot of room to make a great first impression. Specifically, 851 by 315 pixels. Your cover photo is a great way to introduce yourself.  Share your passion for business by incorporating unique photos, a collage, directional cues like arrows pointing to the most important areas of focus on your Facebook page (like your store or offer) and more.
If you want to know what’s happening with your brand’s social networking sites you need social media monitoring tools. Before you reach for your wallet and start to spend money try out some of the free social media monitoring services. This way you will get an understanding of what is available and if you need any paid services to monitor social media.
You may have already heard, but chatbots are in. This comes as no surprise as they are the one digital tool that can communicate and resolve problems for your customers without the potential need for any human interruption. In addition to the above, chatbots integrate with the platforms that consumers now feel most comfortable interacting through: social media. Platforms such as Chattypeople make integrating an AI-powered chatbot into your social media strategy easy. These tools allow you to create a chatbot that:
The platform of social media is another channel or site that business' and brands must seek to influence the content of. In contrast with pre-Internet marketing, such as TV ads and newspaper ads, in which the marketer controlled all aspects of the ad, with social media, users are free to post comments right below an online ad or an online post by a company about its product. Companies are increasing using their social media strategy as part of their traditional marketing effort using magazines, newspapers, radio advertisements, television advertisements. Since in the 2010s, media consumers are often using multiple platforms at the same time (e.g., surfing the Internet on a tablet while watching a streaming TV show), marketing content needs to be consistent across all platforms, whether traditional or new media. Heath (2006) wrote about the extent of attention businesses should give to their social media sites. It is about finding a balance between frequently posting but not over posting. There is a lot more attention to be paid towards social media sites because people need updates to gain brand recognition. Therefore, a lot more content is need and this can often be unplanned content.[91]
Most social media management teams have trouble tying ROI to social media. With Clarabridge, you’ll have the insights to fuel product innovation and make strategic business decisions. Why? Because your team will have access to a wealth of insights from customers at some of their most crucial touchpoints. For example, when customers are making a decision about a product, they very well may make an inquiry via social media. On the other hand, if they are experiencing issues, they will reach out via social media as well. With this information at the ready, your team will be able to have a keen understanding of what customers are looking for—valuable information that your business should be using to fuel innovation and strategic direction. Accessing and sharing this information between your social media management team and the C-Suite means that you’ll be able to tie ROI to your social media management efforts by tracking the customer’s journey from social media to sale acquisition.
Platform integration: The social media management software will help the business to manage all of its essential social media platforms, from one central point. The software allows for the integration of various platforms like Facebook, Twitter YouTube, Instagram and many others from a single dashboard. It means then that a business will be up to date with all the latest news and trends in the social media, making it easy for them to make informed decisions.
In early 2012, Nike introduced its Make It Count social media campaign. The campaign kickoff began YouTubers Casey Neistat and Max Joseph launching a YouTube video, where they traveled 34,000 miles to visit 16 cities in 13 countries. They promoted the #makeitcount hashtag, which millions of consumers shared via Twitter and Instagram by uploading photos and sending tweets.[32] The #MakeItCount YouTube video went viral and Nike saw an 18% increase in profit in 2012, the year this product was released.
IFTTT, short for If This, Then That, is a social media recipe website! In a series of simple steps, this website will help you set up simple commands which link up different applications to automatically perform actions if triggered. For example, IF the weather app tells you there is a high UV index, THEN a reminder to put on sunscreen is triggered. IF you are tagged in a photo on Facebook, THEN save the photos to dropbox.
Social media is rapidly becoming a resource for customer care. Gone are the days when customers would wait in a long line with the hope of resolution or were willing to stay on hold for extended periods of time until they could be helped. On social media, they know that the world is watching. Customers know that brands are likely to quickly resolve their issues if they publicly ask for assistance. For many businesses, this can pose issues since they most likely rely on a marketing team to run their social media management initiatives.
A platform for social media monitoring, engaging, publishing, analytics and managing customer data. Falcon enables brands to explore the full potential of digital marketing and advertising by managing multiple customer touchpoints on one platform. It allows marketers to deliver more personalized brand experiences based on enriched customer profiles. The platform features a highly intuitive and collaborative UI and is complemented by comprehensive support and consultancy services.
Now, look at social media through the same lens. Social media spending in the U.S. alone is expected to increase to more than $17 billion in 2019. A dizzily impressive figure, no doubt, but that kind of budget makes sense when you look at just how important social is to the way companies engage with their audiences, amplify their content marketing, and measure their successes. In fact, “The State of Digital Media” found that 66 percent of publication editors determine content success based on the number of social shares each piece yields.
Too often, businesses fail to secure all of the relevant social media profiles prior to kicking off a formal social media strategy. That's why I highly recommend KnowEm. KnowEm allows you to check for the use of your brand, product, personal name or username instantly on over 500 popular and emerging social media websites. By securing your social media identities you will maximize brand equity.   - Kristopher Jones, LSEO.com
Great Social Content — Consistent with other areas of online marketing, content reigns supreme when it comes to social media marketing. Make sure you post regularly and offer truly valuable information that your ideal customers will find helpful and interesting. The content that you share on your social networks can include social media images, videos, infographics, how-to guides and more.

If your business is at the point where you are considering a social media management platform, then you probably already have a CRM tool in place. CRM systems are an important part of your company's tech arsenal, helping you to effectively keep tabs on your interactions with customers. If used properly, they can be extremely effective in improving customer satisfaction and driving up sales.
If a visitor tweets at your handle or posts on your Facebook page and never receives a response, trust is lost. Due to your lack of communication, the dissatisfied potential lead is now turning to your competitors to seek answers to their questions. On the other hand, when you deliver a thoughtful response in a timely manner that visitor is flattered and intrigued by your brand. It’s humanizing to take the time respond to a personal inquiry, and it builds your authority.
Most companies are looking to social media platforms to promote their businesses and build and market their brands. These businesses’ experiences can truly answer the query, what is social media management software? In this respect, the software’s basic function is to connect/communicate with consumers. It can also help distinguish vital customers and enable businesses to follow their online activities. Also, the software can monitor the performance of a company’s social media campaign through the real time analytics and reports that it furnishes. It is no wonder that in some places such as Europe, senior executives have been found to use SMMS more than their junior counterparts. This proves that the technology works as a marketing platform.
You can combine several strategies to increase traffic and leads. For starters, make sure your profile is consistent with your brand aesthetic so users’ expectations are met. Also, link to your site whenever it’s appropriate. Link back to your website in your bio, your branded posts, and anywhere else that allows you to insert a relevant call to action.

…and almost as important, quantity. Because let’s face it, social media is about what is going on NOW, right this second. This is especially true for Twitter; we recently found that engagement rate increased 46% week over week after publishing 30 more tweets than the week prior. In fact, those 30 extra tweets helped push 30% more traffic to the website with 60% more link clicks than the previous week.

People respond to good imagery, fun videos, and some interesting podcasts once and awhile. Jazz up your content by using this type of media regularly. Your social media pages will look bland if all you post and share is text, so be sure to use other types of media to catch your audience's eye. This is also a great way to add a level of personality to your brand.
IFTTT is a powerful Internet automation site that can save you a lot of time managing social media and other tasks through recipes. You can essentially connect any major network or channel together to automate sharing on sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more based on any action you desire. Like sending out a tweet automatically every time you publish a new blog post or getting an email when your favorite magazine has something new to say. Plus best of all, it works well with Buffer and Hootsuite and just enhances those tools even further and is a must use for any serious social media professional.

Returning to our above example, say we are running a campaign with a goal of generating 25 new customers over the course of three months. We then need to work our way backward from that goal to identify the steps needed to reach that campaign goal. Below are some questions that we think are worthwhile to ask of your campaigns in order to identify the specific tactics needed to reach your goals.
Social media is crucial to the success of any company's digital marketing strategy. Despite this, brands of all kinds and sizes are not using this tool to its full potential. Although the number of "follows", "likes" and "shares" is still important, the credibility of a brand is distinguished by far more than just this. Today, social media requires a unique set of skills whereby brands need to fully understand the needs of their audience. To help you out, I've put together 10 social media strategies you need to implement this year, whether you are a young entrepreneur or a well-established brand.
Canva is a graphic design program that makes creating professional graphics and presentations easy — no graphic designer experience required. With Canva, you can create a social media graphic (at any size or dimension) using your own images or any of the millions of themes, graphics, icons, and fonts in Canva’s arsenal. You can also save your creations if you want to make a recurring series using the same branding.

Zoho Social helps marketers to grow the social media presence of their brand with actionable insights focused on content and engagement. It provides marketers with pre-publishing insights based on the engagement level of previous posts and the activity of their audience. Zoho Social even goes a step ahead to shows users the percentage of their audience that’s likely to see their post now, suggests the next best time to post and lets them schedule a post to go out at the same time of the day in different time-zones. Zoho Social's real-time monitoring dashboard helps marketing teams listen to what’s being said about their brand. Users can search and track a keyword; and respond when they need to. Instant notifications ensure quick reactions and guarantee that no relevant conversations are missed. Within Zoho Social, numbers are included as a value add, around publishing and listening features. A dedicated reports tab provides social-network-specific statistics and detailed analytics enabling users to understand more about their audience and how people engage with their content.
Converse directly with your followers: Literally have a conversation with them, retweet them, like and comment on their posts, and directly ask them to interact with your content. The insurance company Allstate created a separate Twitter account for their popular advertising character, Mayhem, who continously “captures the life events you just can’t seem to avoid.” Almost everything they post is geared towards talking to their fans, whether that be retweeting, asking questions, running a contest, or even sending #MayhemValentine’s to followers. This Twitter account also follows my point above regarding using humor and personality in each post. Recently they ran an overwhelming successful social media campaign #MayhemSale, in which Mayhem possed as a burglar selling all his best burgles online. It sounds sort of bizzare, but it worked and created an insane amount of buzz. Just look at the one tweet below with 4.6K retweets.
Xsopo is an easy to use interface that enables easy use of social media. Xsopo facilitates automatic publishing and scheduling of posts on multiple social media platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook, and many more. Xsopo makes use of the API’s of the social media websites that enables users type a message once and a quick review of how the user’s message will look like will be showcased to the user. Xsopo is also ideal for companies and enterprises as it enables them to schedule a message which will later be delivered with precision and accuracy. Xsopo features the…
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