The digital space evolves quickly. To stay ahead of the competition, you need to know the latest and best business strategies but, at the same time, it’s important to avoid passing fads.
Luckily, there are some overarching trends you can use to guide your strategy and make your brand’s voice heard in an increasingly crowded digital space. Here are five tips to help you adapt your social media marketing to 2013’s biggest trends.
1. (Re)define your audience
Defining your target market before starting a social media campaign may sound obvious, but it’s a step that many small business owners neglect. Your audience will influence which social media platforms you use and the type of content you offer.
Even if you defined your target market when you initially started your social media campaign, it’s worth thinking about your audience again as you move into the new year.
If the social media channels you’re using aren’t working for you, it’s time to adapt. Consider your audience and what they’ll respond to best and don’t assume that because a social media channel is new it’s necessarily better.
Pinterest, for example, which garnered interest in the digital marketing world in 2012, has a largely female audience and isn’t suitable for all types of business. If you’d like to connect closely with a male and female audience, Facebook is still a good tool.
Twitter is also great if your target market consists of both men and women, but it’s better for sharing news and short soundbytes than developing a more personal and conversational relationship with clients.
3. Content is everything
Content marketing is possibly the biggest trend in digital marketing to come out of 2012 and its popularity is going to continue into 2013. Put simply, content marketing attracts people to your brand by offering them content like articles or images that they want to consume.
A Facebook audience will want you to share a mixture of media with them – video, images, links to news and other types. On the other hand, a Pinterest audience will only be interested in visual information. The key is to make sure that the information you offer your audience is relevant to them.
If they know that you will provide them with useful information on a regular basis, they will keep coming back for more and share that information with their connections, growing your audience.
4. Relationships first
In social media marketing, the focus is often placed on numbers – building followers and counting ‘likes’ – rather than on building relationships. The numbers are, of course, important. But they shouldn’t be your first priority as it’s ultimately relationships with your audience that will grow the number of ‘likes’ that you have.
Good relationships lead to more good relationships, and cultivating plenty of them is the best way to grow your business’s social network.
Don’t be swayed by fads. If something you’re doing works, don’t stop doing it just because everybody else is. If Facebook is working for you, stick with Facebook.
The digital landscape changes quickly and it’s vital that you keep up, but there’s a difference between a trend and a fad. A trend is lasting – a fad will be over almost as soon as you’ve started following it.