04 Jul How to Identify the Right Goals for Your Business
What works for one business doesn’t necessarily work for others, even if you’re in similar industries. Before you define one or more goals, figure out where your business stands. First, audit your brand’s digital presence, including a social media audit. Then, analyze your marketing and sales funnels to determine where improvements could have a significant effect.
Should you build awareness, generate leads, nurture your community, or learn about your audience? Through the audit and analysis, you’ll discover which objective, if achieved, would benefit your company most at this point in time. When you can answer that, you’ve got yourself a goal.
Goal-setting matters because your ability to produce results from social media marketing is highly correlated with your ability to identify meaningful goals. This correlation makes sense: You can’t identify success or failure if you don’t know how much closer or farther away you are from reaching your goal.
The goal that you choose to pursue will determine what strategies you adopt and what performance metrics you should be tracking. After you have this overall goal, you can start identifying relevant metrics, devising strategies, and creating content.
#1: Increase Brand Awareness
Social media is a great way to spread the word. Facebook alone has 1.94 billion monthly active users. Whether you’re selling skincare products or IT outsourcing services, your business would most likely benefit from a strong social media campaign that puts your brand’s content in front of the right people.
You’ll want to set a brand awareness goal if you’re launching a new brand or product, if you’ve lost a significant amount of market share, or if you’re trying to reach a new target market.
Brand Awareness Metrics to Watch
Measuring brand awareness can get a little problematic because you need a focus group to measure brand recall. However, a few specific figures will give you a pretty good idea of how strong your brand presence is:
- Average reach per post
- Website traffic from social media
- Number of followers
- Number of brand mentions
- Engagement levels (likes, shares, comments, replies, etc.)
- Share of voice (brand coverage relative to your competitors)
For the most part, you’ll find these metrics via your corresponding social analytics tools (for instance, get Facebook metrics from Facebook Insights) or free tools like Google Analytics. More complex metrics like share of voice require specific tools like TrendKite or Brandwatch Analytics.
How to Increase Brand Awareness
After you identify the relevant metrics, it’s time to look at improving them. First, start posting content that excites your audience. Your brand is competing with a vast array of other brands for user attention so your content has to be uniquely valuable.
Aim to produce and share content that educates, informs, entertains, or inspires. Try to mix things up a little with a balance of the four types of content and keep overtly promotional posts to a minimum.
You can develop content that increases brand awareness in several ways. When you inject some personality into your content, you remind everyone that you’re human, too. You might try influencer marketing, but make sure you approach it the right way. Host a contest or giveaway if your audience loves free stuff.
To increase a post’s reach, try curating popular posts to leverage their virality and add relevant hashtags to each post. If you’ve got a decent marketing budget, you could invest in social media advertising to good effect. It’s pretty amazing how accurately you can target audiences with social media ads.
You’ve got a few options here, but keep the relevant metrics in mind. Those are the numbers you’re trying to improve.
#2: Drive Traffic/Leads
Website traffic and sales leads are the metrics associated with sales and revenue. By nature, social media platforms, with their labyrinth of hyperlinks and clickable media, make the process of growing sales and revenue pretty easy. However, driving traffic and leads requires a good understanding of what motivates users to click.
You could set a goal to drive traffic and leads if your sales are stagnant, if your website’s content isn’t getting much attention, or if you want to support your inbound marketing funnel.
#3: Build a Community
However you look at it, your social media page combined with your followers and influencers make up an online community. Your job is to cultivate that community, growing it into a valuable tool that represents the image and vision of your organization.
Building a social media community is a good goal if you want to improve customer service efficiency, increase brand engagement, build trust, or provide more value to your audience.
#4: Listen to Your Audience to Discover Their Interests
Social media presents brands with a massive opportunity to learn about their audience through social listening. The nature of social media means sharing information publicly, which is great for marketers doing research. By monitoring conversations, sentiments, and mentions, you can get a good idea of how your audience feels about a particular topic.
Social listening is a good social media goal when you want to promote a new product and there’s no existing market, or you want to focus on a specific niche. However, in reality, you should always use social listening. Constantly learning about your audience is something you just shouldn’t turn off.
You need to properly define your social media goal before you know what strategies to adopt. A systematic process for goal-setting can also help you track the right metrics and know how successful your efforts are in achieving your specific goal.
Although you’re not restricted to one goal, the metrics are different for each goal, so you’ll have to cover more bases. If you’re just starting out with social media marketing, start with one or two goals at most.