Social media has opened individuals and organizations up to global opportunities that have expanded international potential for greater brand awareness and target market accessibility. The success of numerous brands and personal influencers is a strong testament to the powers of social media, however attaining a scalable position in the social media world requires consistent, innovative effort.
Have you found yourself in a social media rut or has your audiences’ engagement hit a plateau? We’ve compiled the top 5 reasons brands encounter slow or no growth in their social network, paired with best corrective strategies to ensure your social blade is always on the rise:
1. Stop blaming the algorithm; What is your content really saying about you?
Social media is amazing for building audiences, personal brands and customer bases; you have numerous free platforms upon which you are able to customize and personalize the experience your target audience has with your brand. If your followers aren’t engaging with your content or finding value in it, they are the ones telling the instagram algorithm that a given piece of content shouldn’t be promoted to other similar users because they don’t find value in the content; not instagram. Critically and constructively view the persona you have created for your brand online; do you feel welcomed or interested? Does your content provide your followers and future followers with actionable value, or does it fill their feed with useless information? A|B Test different content types to ensure your content is interesting and useful.
2. You’ve assumed your popularity is greater than it really is
Social media accounts with large followings are often initially very intriguing until taking a deeper dive into the audience’s true lack of engagement. If you’ve found yourself in a position with a seemingly substantial online presence that for whatever reason just won’t grow or provide your organization with meaningful results, you’ve likely overestimated the quality of your online audience. Therefore, rather than focusing on gross totals of followers, likes and comments, turn your attention to your engagement rates; social media’s most crucial KPI. As a percent of your total following, how many users take their time to interact with your brand. The average ranges between approximately 1%-4% for various industries, however by understanding which content styles return the highest engagement, higher rates are very achievable.
3. Your content is only about you
Healthy client relationships should aim to ensure your clients feel heard and that you’re truly aiming to help them, rather than just complete a transaction with them. A collaborative process of give and take builds much greater loyalty, rather than a company that is constantly pushing a ‘me, me, me,’ message. Without a doubt, highlight your brand and all the unique features it has to offer, but never forget to blend that with appreciation for the other half of your organization’s survival; your clients. Thanking clients for feedback, highlighting client use cases and appealing to your customers’ personal values are all great ways to maintain healthy client relations.
4. You aren’t targeting your audience
In any business scenario, knowing exactly who your target audience is provides vital leverage an organization can use to employ resources to reach that audience more effectively. Consider your brand’s target market, now consider where your brand can be found online; are these platforms you’ve chosen the best places to find your clients during and outside of working hours? You need to be easily accessible where your audience is as there is no guarantee that they’ll go out of their way to find you. Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter are extremely popular social media platforms, and despite areas of overlap, each appeals to different potential clients in different ways. Also, the method under which content is shared differs, thus it is important to take note that content must be targeted directly at your clients through a manner that is best fitting to the platform.
5. Your content is not engaging
Social media provides organizations with an amazing opportunity to show a more personal side of their business, and let the human values of the brand shine through. Whether your goal is to drive a desired emotional response or to enable a transaction with your company, content that is overwhelming, unorganized or not interesting will distract a potential client from being able to decode the value you are trying to provide them with. To grow your audience, don’t just post content to your main feed and then leave, solidify a great impression by also being engaged on your own social media accounts. Answer client messages quickly, reply to comments encouraging your audience to continue the conversation and show appreciation for online reviews by thanking them. Competitive, high quality service must continue no matter where you are.
Social media is constantly changing and organizations must engage in innovative practices to ensure online presence success. Unfortunately, social media roadblocks can slow the process of cultivating a healthy digital community. However, by taking an honest look at your content, the health of your audience, and your social strategies, as outlined above, you’re sure to be on your way to sustained network growth.