Pretty much every modern brand has a social media strategy in place. These businesses would use social platforms to interact with their customers, build brand awareness, and promote their products. What some brands fail to realize is that there’s so much more they could do with their social media data.
Every social network collects some data on its users. They keep track of how many impressions posts get, the click-through rate of shared links, engagement rates, and so on. Some social media platforms like Facebook even have insights into user interests. All this data is available from the analytics dashboards.
If you’re creative enough, you’ll realize there’s so much more you can do with the data. So, in this article, I will show you six creative ways to put your social media data to good use.
1. Content marketing
About 96 percent of consumers don’t trust brand marketers and advertising. It’s not hard to understand why. Brands will rarely advertise their products and point out caveats. They’ll only say the cool stuff that will get them sales.
Do you know what modern consumers trust more? Fellow buyers. A report by Power Reviews showed that 95% of buyers check out user reviews before buying a product. Younger consumers are especially keen on checking out reviews.
That means businesses have to invest hugely in getting user reviews.
Social media is a goldmine of user-generated content (UGC).
Take Apple, for instance. The company created a hashtag, #ShotoniPhone, which iPhone users can use when posting their gorgeous photos online. The company picks some of these posts and reshares them on its social media pages.
The same strategy is used by other brands, including GoPro and Starbucks.
You don’t have to use UGC on social media posts alone. You can incorporate the content into virtually all your channels.
For example, you can lift some of the reviews from your social pages and include them in your landing pages. That’s what Calvin Klein does.
UGC adds social proof to your landing page, which can increase your conversion rates.
You could also add user reviews to your marketing emails. They help resolve customer objections and convince prospects your product is the real deal.
Social data can also show you which type of content your visitors want to see. For example, if one of your posts generates impressive engagements and impressions, it’s clear that your audience loved it. So, why not make more of the same social media post? Analyze the post and figure out what made it special. Then, replicate the same idea with future posts.
2. Create buyer personas
As mentioned earlier, social networks collect some data on their users. Most networks have demographic data telling you the age, gender, among others, of users.
Compiling this data can help you create accurate buyer personas for your business. You can get even deeper insights with Facebook and Instagram. You could, for instance, identify the interests of your ideal customers and include the information in your buyer personas.
Besides the data from inbuilt social media analytics tools, you can gather information on your potential customers through audience intelligence tools. These tools can show you the behaviors and preferences of your target audience. For instance, they can tell you which influencers your audience listens to the most.
With all that data, creating accurate customer personas should be straightforward. These personas should then help you target your audience more efficiently.
For instance, you can look at the influencers that your customers listen to and partner with them. Or, you could look at the demographic data and adjust your content or messaging appropriately. For example, if you see most of your audience is Gen Z, you can adjust your content tone appropriately.
If the audience intelligence tool shows your audience is emotional, you can tweak your campaign to make it more personal and emotional.
3. Customer service
You can also use social media for customer service. Disappointed customers usually share their experiences on social media and even tag brands. All you need to do is track what they’re saying and respond appropriately.
Issue an apology, then show your business is committed to rectifying the issue. The better you handle the situation, the more trust you’ll earn from your buyers. Keep in mind that other potential customers are also watching.
You can also integrate social media analytics with your CRM solution. That allows you to keep track of all the crucial metrics from one dashboard. One of the items that you will need to keep track of is brand mentions.
Customers may mention your brands on social media without tagging you. Tracking these mentions can help you identify some of the issues your customers are experiencing. You can then use that information to improve your operations accordingly.
Not all social media mentions and DMs will be negative, though. You should also recognize positive experiences. These provide an opportunity to interact with delighted customers and show off your brand.
You can also build a community for your audience on social media through something like Facebook groups. Many brands have such groups where customers can interact with each other.
In some cases, you may find members helping each other out. You’ll essentially have group members answering questions and providing customer support to fellow members.
If your group is public, other interested customers will be able to learn more about your brand and its active community.
4. Competitor analysis
Use social media data to spy on your competitors and gain insights into what they’re doing. Different tools can help you out with this.
Let’s take the Crowd Fire Competitive Analysis as an example. The tool can produce crucial data on your competitors, which you could use to improve your own social media strategy.
It can show you how frequently your competitors publish on Facebook. Compare this data with what you are doing. If there’s a significant difference, consider adjusting your publishing calendar appropriately to keep your audience more engaged.
You can also look at the top-performing posts of your competitors.
Analyze these posts and find out what made them a hit. Perhaps they used some catchy visuals? Or do they utilize some memes to evoke reactions? Use those insights to improve your posts.
You can also use competitor analysis tools to check which hashtags your competitors are using. See which hashtags get the most impressions and figure out what the campaign is about. You can then use that as inspiration to develop an even better campaign for your business.
You can do a similar analysis with pretty much every social platform. But, I’ll urge you to prioritize the ones where most of your audience hangs out.
5. Sales funnel
Social media data can improve your sales funnel in various ways. First, the data can give you behavioral insights into your customers.
For example, you may notice a particular lead always clicks on posts discussing Subject X. You can use this insight to segment your audience appropriately.
So, if the post was about “cheap CRM solution,” place the lead into a segment on affordable CRM platforms. That way, you will be able to nurture the lead more effectively with relevant content.
That also means you can use social media data to identify where your leads are in the sales funnel. If a lead tends to interact with top-of-the-funnel content, chances are they are still at the beginning of the customer journey.
Use that insight to serve the right content to the lead. So if the lead is interacting with ToFu content, don’t push the lead into making a purchase. It’ll just ignore such posts. Instead, target the lead with educational content to cultivate awareness and interest.
You can also use social media data to include social networks in your sales funnel through retargeting. Let’s say a potential customer clicks on your Instagram post and ends up on a landing page about product X, but they do not convert. You can remarket the same or similar products to the lead through social media.
Grammarly, Booking.com, and Airbnb are just a few of the brands running such remarketing campaigns.
There’s more you can do with your social media strategy than building brand awareness and selling your products. You can use social media data to enhance your content marketing strategy, create accurate and reliable buyer personas, perform competitor analysis, and improve customer support.
Social media data can also improve your sales funnel. It can help you identify where your leads are in the customer journey and serve relevant content to help them convert.
In closing, you should focus on improving your social media strategy. Then, collect and analyze all the key metrics regularly. Finally, connect the dots in your data and use the insights in the various ways discussed above. That way, you’ll maximize the use of social media for your business.