The social media marketing industry has a huge problem on its hands. Since literally everyone with a smartphone has access to social media, many people *think* they know what goes into building a brand and selling products using the tools. They are good at taking pretty pictures and using clever hashtags. However, there is much more to social media marketing than getting Likes on a picture.
With that in mind, I felt compelled to create a piece of content explicitly meant to confuse the uninformed and bring value to those who already know “content is king." Before I get started, I want to acknowledge that there is a need for attractive creative and engaging content. However, the road doesn’t stop there. An engaging content strategy, attractive creative, and interactivity are table stakes. To truly see business impact from marketing on social media channels, there is much more to learn. Here are 5 advanced social media marketing tips!
1. Leverage Your Own Data
First and foremost, leverage your own data. Take inventory of how many email addresses you have in your CRM and segment them into useful groups. Then, upload them into Facebook to match those email addresses to users on the platform – this also works for Twitter and LinkedIn.
When that data lives in the social platforms, you can use tools like Audience Insights to learn about the interests, demographics, and more of the people included in your CRM. This is HUGE when trying to decide where your social media strategy should go.
Furthermore, you can use this information to prospect for new business by creating a Lookalike Audience. This is a new audience based off users that look and behave digitally similarly to the CRM list you uploaded to start with. Keep in mind that the barrier to entry on using this data is that you need to run social media advertising to serve content specifically to these users.
However, the data from audience insights is free. Outside of your CRM, you can mine data and insights off your own website as well by installing social pixels, but we will talk about that later. Leverage your own data and give your social strategy a springboard to success!
2. Track Content with UTM Codes
Most people, including marketers, judge the success of social media content by the amount of engagement it gets. Statistically speaking, the more someone engages with a brand, the more likely they are to buy from it. However, it is incredibly easy to obsess about engagement and forget that getting all the Likes in the world doesn’t mean you will sell products or services.
Assuming you are mixing into your content plan a number of content pieces that link off to your website, there are ways to tell what kind of activity each content piece activated on your website. Through UTM codes you can create a custom URL that is trackable in Google Analytics. The use of UTM codes can tell you the amount of sessions, unique visitors, pages per session, time on site, and goal completions that each individual piece of content triggered.
Not every brand will need to track content in this amount of detail. However, if you are ready to TRULY see how successful your social media content is, look deeper than just engagements and track content with UTM codes. After all, if people click links and visit your site via a post, they are extremely unlikely to go back and leave a comment. Need proof? Look at a news outlet’s Facebook Page and check out the amount of people who leave comments but clearly haven’t read the article to which the post links!
3. Install and Embrace Social Pixels
This is where the soft and cuddly social media marketing the public thinks exists morphs into a deadly serious data-driven platform for business. Social pixels are a snippet of code that you place on your website that allows the social platforms to peek into your site and share data back and forth. By installing these pixels, you can create remarketing campaigns to serve ads to users who have recently visited your site or even learn more about website users through the Audience Insights dashboard.
The social pixels should be at the heart of everything you do from an advertising perspective. For instance, the more you leverage Facebook’s pixel, the more it learns about the audience you are going after, and it self-optimizes to get the best results. Our own campaigns show that when we run campaigns leveraging the pixel, we see a drastic drop in our cost per objective and an increase in our overall conversions. The social pixels are your friends. USE THEM!
4. Set up Conversion Events
Piggybacking off the social pixel conversation, as an advertiser you can set up specific conversion actions by adding more code to the site to track different actions triggered from your campaigns. For instance, once you have the Facebook Pixel installed on your site, you can then add additional code to tell the system which actions you want to track. This allows us to track Leads, Registrations, Page Views, Downloads and more.
Furthermore, you can optimize your campaigns for these specific actions and Facebook’s system will auto-optimize to serve the ads to users who are most likely to take those actions that are important to you. The end game with this strategy is to be able to assign direct ROI to your campaigns so that you know exactly how much it is costing you to drive business. A far cry from cute cat pictures, right?
5. Pay Attention to View-Through Attribution
The capabilities provided by the social pixels are exciting, but the cherry on top is the bonus view-through attribution they provide. View-through attribution allows advertisers to see the number of users who saw an ad on the way to convert.
Normally, you would only be able to track conversions if a user clicked an ad and immediately converted. Using the view-through attribution method, you can track users who click an ad and convert much later through a different channel. This gives you a better idea of the impact of your social media efforts. Without view-through attribution, you may think your social media marketing isn’t doing ANYTHING for your business when it comes to conversion. This advanced tactic gives you a deeper level of tracking.
Social media marketing is truly like an iceberg. It starts with fun, cute images and videos. However, when you grow in sophistication, you realize there are highly effective tools used to build brands and sell products under the surface!