People ideate a thousand things, and a handful of them evolve in the form of startups. But unlike an already established business, startups demand laser-focused attention.
Out of all the crucial aspects of building a startup, marketing plays the most dynamic role in its success.
And that’s obvious! If people are not aware of your existence, then how will your startup grow? How will you get a client and proceed any further?
Marketing is the essential kick-starter in bringing out your business in front of the world. As per stats, 56.9% of the startups have dedicated marketing teams. At the same time, the most commonly used way of marketing is through social media.
These numbers are enough to prove that marketing, especially social media marketing, can take your startup to new heights if executed correctly. Moreover, various new trends have emerged to make your SMM campaign a lead booster.
In the succeeding sections, we shall discuss how to market your startup using the latest trends. So, let’s just dive in!
Why is social media marketing important?
Without any additional jibber-jabber, here are some points that are worth noticing:
- There are 4.48 billion people on social media websites.
- Facebook, YouTube, Instagram are the top social media platforms to be used daily.
- Around 73% of marketers say that SMM has been effective for their business.
So, why are we discussing these random stats out of nowhere? Well, they paint a clear picture that social media marketing for startups can guarantee to get your sales and revenue sky high.
1. Brand awareness
Brand awareness is the number one factor that governs the importance of social media marketing for startups. Many global brands rely solely on social media channels like Facebook and Instagram to market their business proactively.
For example, Clinique leverages Facebook ad campaigns to launch a new line of products in 20 international markets with a 13-point lift average in ad recall and a 36-point lift average in add to cart.
Other than this, 44% of local businesses rely on social media for brand awareness. So, to put it plainly, social media channels are accessed every day by billions of users across the globe. Thus, making them a hotspot for marketing your business.
2. Direct communication
Communication is the key to every relationship, and it works best in the case of consumers and suppliers. With the help of social media, one can let go of the middle man. Thus, brands can interact directly with their customers.
These days Google comes after social networks for product search and service hunt. 90% of customers have used social media channels to communicate with the brand. Moreover, 63% of users expect that brands should provide customer service via social networks.
Hence, along with building brand value, you must harness social media to gather customer feedback and resolve customer issues.
3. High traffic at a low price
It’s common for startups to have a resource crunch. Hence, it becomes quite critical to spend your penny wisely while planning your marketing strategy. While most media can cost you an arm and a leg, social media marketing fits the bill in tactful promotions.
It is highly cost-effective. However, social media channels like Facebook and Instagram charge for the marketing campaign. The good thing is that one can decide his or her budget. Moreover, other than paid campaigns, it will still show you decent results if you take an organic approach.
If you plan and produce your content correctly, marketing on social media can bring you a higher return on investments. It will attract the audience that is most likely to convert into customers. Make sure that you create and include striking visual content as it is most likely to get the user’s attention.
All these reasons sum up the importance of social media marketing for startups.
What to do before you start social media marketing?
Well, SMM is not just creating an ad on Facebook and BOOM! You are on the top. Wish it was that easy!
There are multiple attributes that you need to analyze carefully before going for the marketing streak. Here are some of those factors you ought to consider.
1. ICP (Ideal customer profile)
When you go on a social network, there are many types of users on it. Just like their distribution category, there are also different content preferences. All of them will not be interested in your startup with just one type of content.
Hence, it is necessary to check various attributes. After you have an insight into the customer’s behaviour, you can get a better understanding of:
- The type of content that needs to be developed
- The segment of the audience to target
- The specific location
And others, then only you will be able to formulate a strategy for social media marketing.
Moreover, you need to list the customers and firms based on your ICP, research the common links between the customers, and filter out key people you need to target.
2. Core values
The second in line aspect that you need to be sure about before you begin social media marketing is the core values of the campaign. This should include everything that you need from your SMM campaign.
Some firms create online pages on Facebook to gather feedback for their products. This helps them understand the demand and market of the product clearly, thus helps them visualize their goal. Based on this, they set future goals that they need to achieve.
After all, if you will be clear about your expectations, whether it is boosting app installs, raising user awareness, generating leads, etc. You will be able to plan your SMM campaign easily.
3. Think through customer preferences on groups and communities
Well, as teased above in the ICP part of social media strategy for startups, this factor will benefit you a lot, provided you have done your homework. While recognizing the ICP for your SMM campaign, it is necessary to research individual users, local and foreign communities, and groups most likely to convert into customers.
You can easily find these tribes on Facebook groups, LinkedIn communities, and websites like Growth Hackers, Indie hacker, Hackernoon, Slack, and many others. It is necessary to discover these communities to grow your brand as they are the primary hotspots for your business success.
One crucial thing that you need to make sure of is the activity level of the communities. There will be no benefit in targeting groups that have sluggish engagement and little response.
Launching a social media marketing campaign
Now that you are well-versed with the concept of finding groups and communities on social networks, it is time to check what channels you need to leverage for the outreach.
1. Decide the channels
There are various social media channels that you can leverage. The point that will help you decide is the niche of your startup. For example, if you have an educational startup, you can go for LinkedIn ads or Facebook ads.
As per Statista, 29.4% of Facebook users are between 13-24 years of age. So, Facebook can be one of the prime channels for marketing your startup.
If you are a recruitment startup, choosing LinkedIn will be like hitting the bull’s eye for you. LinkedIn is a professional platform with over 756 million users and will serve you great for getting quality leads.
Facebook, with monthly active users of over 2.70 billion, is ideal for almost all sorts of businesses. Here are some of the best examples of it:
- Under Armour, an American sportswear maker, had a 35% increase in conversion rate and a 2X increase in return on investment via its Facebook ad campaign.
- Invstr, an investing app, received a 2.8X boost in registrations and a 2.5X boost in app installs.
Apart from this, you will find umpteen classic examples that prove the dominance of social media in marketing.
To make your marketing campaign more attractive and interactive, you can leverage the latest trends like:
- AR (Augmented reality) in Facebook stories, Instagram, and Snapchat stories.
- Run direct shoppable ads.
- Hire an influencer who has a high following on social networks.
- Let users interact with chatbots for their issues and concerns. This will help handle user complaints after regular working hours.
- Utilize lead magnets like free webinars, free whitepapers, free templates, and other useful sorts of content for branding.
2. Focus on organic growth of the brand
Now, SMM is not just about running high-quality ads on social media. You need to do a lot more to make people aware of your startup. For example, you must have noticed that many brands interact with their audience via Facebook posts. People tell their problems in the comments, and the concerned person responds.
As 80% of people use social media to communicate with the brand, it becomes necessary for you to use them. Moreover, once you are aware of the customer’s issues via social media, you can create content like a blog post or a video highlighting their issues and their respective solutions. You can share this content with the targeted groups, pages, and communities.
This method of interacting with your target audience will help in the organic growth of your startup. Plus, it will also help in attracting quality traffic to your business website.
For example, let’s say you promote a new platform for marketers. Then, you need to research Facebook communities using keywords like digital marketing, SEO marketing, social media marketing, B2B marketing, and so on.
Then, you need to check if this group is alive: how often there are publications, how many likes and comments they collect, and so on.
Create a relevant post you wanted to write about. Ensure to check the reaction of the community. Important note: you need to answer each commentary.
It saves you from being moderated, boosts engagement, and drives traffic for free.
3. Toolkits for social media marketing for startups
As your business grows with time, it will become necessary for you to keep your social media channel updated after regular working hours. And working out of your time zone can affect your body as well as your mind.
So, here arises the need to use some tools to automate posting the marketing content timely.
There are various tools on the web that you can use:
- SocialPilot: This is an awesome tool that can be used to schedule posts on multiple social media platforms, analyze campaign results, and create Facebook ads for multiple accounts. With this tool, you can also reply to comments and messages on Facebook. One can also collaborate with their team using SocialPilot.
- Hubspot: Hubspot is a Customer Relationship Management software useful in maintaining coordinated communication with the customers. The tool features aspects like customer interactions, a track record of sales, and collaboration with your team. Hubspot is the best for B2B communication and management.
- Lempod: As per the general definition, Lempod is a chrome extension that helps in enhancing LinkedIn engagement. With Lempod, you can find groups and communities on LinkedIn that will support your curated content. You can filter those groups by using a location filter or based on the industry. The tool will help you foster likes and comments on your post. It will also enhance the visibility of the campaign.
Techniques that strengthen social media marketing
Now, as you know the what and how of social media marketing, you will be able to design and run a highly productive SMM campaign. But, if you want to strengthen it further, you can club with other marketing techniques. Here are some of the activities that you can undertake along with SMM to power up your marketing process:
- Retargeting: This is the phase that comes after you have attracted enough traffic to your website via your regular ads. Statistics suggest that the average click-through rate (CTR) of retargeting ads is 10 times more than the regular ads. Hence, make sure you focus on this too.
- Email marketing: The process of pitching potential clients with your products and services via email is known as email marketing. You can implement this besides your campaign as the market is expected to go up to $9 billion by 2027.
- SEO: As mentioned above in the reasons to choose SMM, SEO plays an important role while creating content for your marketing campaign. Embedding the right keywords and phrases in your content helps in boosting your site’s rank in Google search results, thus, making your site easy to find.
Social media marketing for startups can be tricky on multiple levels. The reach might pose an issue, targeting can be a challenge, setting budgets with dismal results might beat you down.
But with apt experimentation and continual efforts, you can achieve the needed results. Another thing to bear in mind is that social media is rewarding to those who are consistent.