If you master social media marketing, you can get unlimited traffic to any business at any time. But, most people don't master it.
A lot of people struggle just to get their first few thousand followers, much less drive hundreds of thousands of visitors from social media to their website.
With sites like Facebook having over 2.2 billion members and over 70% of US online adults having some form of social networking profile, you can't get massive traffic without at least trying to leverage social media.
So how can you do a better job of leveraging social media for your marketing efforts? Here's some effective strategies to use:
10 Best Ways To Improve Your Social Media Marketing
1. Add Sharing Buttons To Blog Images
This may seem like a small strategy, but it can make a HUGE impact. My Pinterest shares have especially skyrocketed since adding a Pin It button that appears on images when you hover over them.
Go ahead and hover over the image of this post and you should see a Pin It button pop up in the corner. You can add just a Pinterest button or even go with a Facebook and Twitter one as well.
Here's what it can look like:
You should know by now that images are really taking over social media and people can't get enough of them. In fact, on Facebook, about 87% of the most shared posts on Facebook are images.
And just think about how popular image sharing sites like Pinterest and Instagram have gotten.
Images are the way to go if you want to boost your social engagement and adding social buttons to blog images just makes it much easier for visitors to do the work for you.
If you don't already have a go-to image sharing plugin, I recommend you use the Sumome free image sharer.
2. Embed Tweets On Blog Posts
One of the lessons you'll learn from me about marketing and social media engagement is that you have to make it easy for your visitors.
If you try to make people work to share your posts on social media or opt in to a mailing list, they won't do it. Everything needs to be as user-friendly as possible.
If you combine this concept with Twitter, it can truly be powerful for improving your social media marketing. One way you can get a big boost from Twitter is by embedding tweets in your posts.
Preferably, you want to embed only one or two per post if you do this, so you want to make them count.
Don't embed just the blog post title and the link because that is what the tweet button is for that should be on your social sharing bar. Instead pick a fascinating statistic or really cool image from your post and use those for embedded tweets.
— Justin Bryant (@MrJustinBryant) July 14, 2015
How did I manage to embed this tweet in this post, you ask? Luckily, Twitter was nice enough to make it very simple. All you do is go to Twitter and pick the tweet you want to embed in your post.
Then, click the little “more” icon that looks like 3 dots. After that, just click “embed tweet” and copy the code.
Here's what to look for on Twitter when doing this:
Finally, paste the code in the “text” version of your blog post editing page and you should see the tweet in your post preview.
3. Create Infographics
Infographics are extremely effective for getting both social media engagement and even backlinks. Specifically for social media, infographics get a lot more shares than a typical post full of mostly words.
If you have a lot of interesting statistics or a list of tips, you should turn them into a high quality infographic to embed on your blog.
Not only do they get more backlinks and shares than regular blog posts, they can potentially help people learn the information better.
They learn it faster and better, you get more shares and backlinks. Sounds pretty good, doesn't it?
4. Facebook Boost vs Promoted Post
Obviously if you want to get better at social media marketing, you'll want to include Facebook. Facebook has more people than any of the other social media networks by far, so you can't afford to ignore it.
If you are building a Facebook Page, your organic reach probably isn't going very far, thanks to Facebook's algorithm updates the last few years. Therefore, to maximize reach, traffic and engagement, you need to either boost posts or promote them.
And yes there is a pretty big difference between the two. To boost a post, you just go to your page, look at an update you published and click the little “boost post” button in the bottom right corner.
Then, for about $5, you can boost it to either “people who like your page and their friends” or “people you choose through targeting”.
I recommend you choose the latter because there's a good chance the friends of your fans won't even be interested in your business. You don't want to waste money on people who you don't know anything about.
Just because they're Facebook friends, doesn't mean they have similar interests. If you just want to promote your post to your fans, you're better off doing a promoted post to them as your ad audience.
Promoted posts give you a lot more options for targeting though as opposed to post boosting. Know the difference and use those options wisely to get some traffic to your blog from Facebook.
For an in-depth post on boosting vs promoted posts, read this.
For more Facebook marketing strategies, here are my top 10 tips and tricks.
5. Vertical Images On Pinterest
I've always been interested in increasing traffic from Pinterest because of how popular images have become on social media. One thing I've noticed about Pinterest is that images that are more vertical get a lot more shares.
Why is this? It is because the layout of Pinterest makes these images easier to see. To prove my point to you, I went to Pinterest and searched the most popular posts.
Here is what the results looked like on the top of the page:
Notice how pretty much every one of those images has TONS of repins and likes. Notice the dimensions of the images as well. They are all longer than they are wide aren't they?
Pinterest's search result pages all look like this. To take up the most real estate on their pages, you need to create vertical images instead of more horizontal ones.
They will take up more space, have a better chance of getting noticed and therefore get more engagement.
6. Optimize Youtube Videos The Right Way
If you want to get more traffic, engagement, etc. on Youtube, you need to optimize your videos the right way. Remember, how I mentioned you need to make things as easy as possible for your visitors?
On Youtube you can do this by making the most of a few in-video options you get. First, use a “subscribe” watermark instead of your logo.
I don't know the exact number, but I started getting significantly more Youtube subscribers when I used a “subscribe” watermark as a replacement for my logo in my videos.
Make it say the word “subscribe” and be a bright enough color to capture attention. Mine looks like this:
I also recommend you take advantage of the new Youtube cards for lead generation and use annotations to put related videos for people to click on at the end of each video.
But, getting more subscribers, by using a call-to-action in your watermark can make a BIG difference by itself. Here's a great article on getting more exposure from Youtube.
7. Use Google+ To Rank Posts In Search Results
Google+ often gets overlooked when it comes to social media because it doesn't seem to get the same publicity that Twitter, Facebook or Instagram get. But, it is extremely effective for businesses.
Have you ever noticed how hard it can be to rank a blog post organically? Well what if you could guarantee a page one ranking spot for any Google keyword phrase? Sounds too good to be true, right?
But, it isn't. You just have to look at it differently. Most people try really hard to rank blog posts, only to fail miserably or have to wait a year to finally see it happen.
But, many people forget that Google+ is owned by Google and gets special treatment over any other social platform. They rank posts from Google+ with the keywords you searched on the front page of results.
They only do this when people you follow have a Google+ post containing those keywords in it though. This is what it looks like in search results:
That particular Google+ post was in the 5th spot on page 1 of Google search results for the keyword phrase “social media marketing”.
That is an insanely hard keyword to rank for because of the massive amount of tough competition, yet my Google+ post will be seen there for the people that follow me.
It makes things so much easier if you think about it. While you are publishing content that will hopefully rank for you down the road, you can focus on leveraging Google+ to get there quickly.
All you need to do, other than post for the keywords you want to rank for, is get as many followers as you can, so they will all see it. To do that, here's a post on getting Google+ followers.
8. Schedule Your Social Posts
Because your time is your most important asset in life, you don't want to waste it going back and forth between social profiles all day trying to post statuses. Instead, bulk upload and schedule them.
To do this, use either Hootsuite or Buffer. You can read the full comparison between them here. I use Buffer because it is so simple and doesn't add any additional branding to my posts.
With these services you can simply connect your profiles from Facebook, Twitter, etc. and schedule when you want your posts to automatically be published.
This is great for saving you time and allowing you to always post at the perfect times of the week when you usually get the most engagement.
Both of these even have Google Chrome extensions where you can just click and schedule without ever going to your dashboard. They make you social media marketing life SO much easier.
9. Analyze Results
In any kind of marketing, you must analyze your results. Assuming anything is a big mistake. Just because you think something might do better, doesn't mean it will. It is all up to your audience.
I constantly hear about situations when marketers think an email subject line, social media post, etc. will do really well and then it completely fails while the complete opposite alternative is a success.
This is why you have to keep up with the numbers. To do this, use Google Analytics and BuzzSumo to see what is getting the most engagement and what is not doing too well. You may be surprised by the results.
In Google Analytics, look at how much traffic you get from each social platform by going to “Acquisition”, then “All Traffic”, “Channels” and then “Social Media”. It will look like this:
Use the numbers to figure out where your audience is coming from the most on social media and see what strategies seem to be paying off the best.
With BuzzSumo, go to their website and search your URL. It will then give you your top posts by social media shares. The ones with the most shares are the ones you might want to model future posts after.
10. Use Linkedin Publishing
When it comes to social media, no profile might be as powerful as a good Linkedin profile.
Linkedin has the largest network of professionals on Earth and you can use it to boost credibility, advertise your business, get traffic and even make new connections with future employees or partners.
One of the best ways to grow your Linkedin reach, besides just optimizing your profile, is to leverage their publishing platform. Here, you can publish blog posts on Linkedin without needing a blog, SEO, or anything else.
To do this, sign into Linkedin and look at the top of the home page for the “publish a post” button. Click that and you're ready to start writing a blog post. Here's what to look for:
Once you publish a post, you can share it on Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook and Google+ to get instant exposure. Plus, you Linkedin connections will get a notification when it is done, so they can go see it.
And, not only does Linkedin tell you how many likes and comments the post got, it also tells you how many total views you received.
On top of that, it can be a lot easier to rank the blog post in Google search results because you are publishing straight onto a high-authority site. You may not even need a blog with this at your disposal.
You can check out this article for more Linkedin publishing tips.
Social media marketing can get your brand from unheard of to a celebrity status pretty quickly if you do it right. Leverage the these 10 tips and you will be well on your way to dramatically improving your social media marketing results.
What do you think is the most effective social media marketing strategy?