Social media presence is hygiene for most brands today. It is imperative to have a presence on most social media platforms and to post content that resonates with the audience. Why? Because most of your customers are researching you on their favorite social media platform before deciding to engage with your business.
Social media continues to be an important part of the marketing strategy because it is one of the easiest ways to engage with the community and find new potential customers.
While it is easier for some businesses, every brand can establish a solid presence on social media and build an engaged following on most platforms.
Several platforms are popular today and it is important to be present on most of these platforms so that you can reach as wide an audience as possible. Being where the audience is the crux of any digital marketing effort.
While beginning from scratch may be a scary prospect, it is not impossible to build a 5-figure following on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Instagram. This blog discusses what strategies can build influence on these social platforms.
Set Measurable Goals and Milestones
You can’t fault us for leading with setting goals as the first step. It is the most important step for us whenever we sit to define any strategy for a client. You need measurable goals to make sure that your strategy stays on track. Setting goals will help you understand where you are and where you need to get to. Make sure to have other supporting metrics that can help you keep track of how you are growing.
In terms of social media, building a following will not happen by default. You need to set targets. It is important to not just set follower numbers as targets but also on engagement numbers. This will help you build a following that is valuable to your brand beyond just numbers. Likes, shares, and comments show that the content is resonating with the audience. It also helps with social media algorithms. Most platforms promote popular content, and engagement numbers help with this.
The goals can also be divided in terms of the actions that you want from the strategy. A lot of brands consider brand awareness as the primary goal of social media marketing. Our experience with many brands has taught us that social media works well for lead generation too. It is also a great place for building trust with your target audience, and being a thought leader. All these aspects can be quantified into goals.
Treat Each Platform Independently
This is probably self-explanatory, but it is important to mention this too. Each social media channel needs to be treated independently. Create separate strategies for all social platforms that you want to be on.
No two platforms are alike, and your strategy should take this into account. Create content separately for all the platforms and approach this based on what works on each platform. If you find it difficult to focus on multiple platforms at once, focus on the ones that you think will be the most impactful.
Quality Over Quantity
If you follow any LinkedIn influencer or Instagram influencer, you will soon notice that there is one thing that separates them from the rest. It is the fact that they focus a lot on quality and not much on quantity. Their LinkedIn profiles are filled with insightful posts that you can read and consume anytime. Falling into the trap of believing that you need to post something for the sake of posting is going to lead you into trouble.
Social media marketers need to think like content marketers. You need to ensure that the content being put out on the platforms resonates with the audience, is actionable and valuable, and compels the user to follow or engage. A lot of boxes to tick for sure.
Focusing on valuable content is the best way to ensure that all these boxes are ticked. A piece of content needs to inform the audience and give them insights to act on. Following known influencers on various channels like Bill Gates, Richard Branson, and Arianna Huffington will give you great insights on how you can create valuable content for your brand handles.
Consistency is Important
Being consistent is also vital in ensuring that your social media channels grow organically. Commit to posting on a regular schedule - say 3 or 4 times a week on all your channels, and make sure you stick to this religiously.
Consistency builds familiarity in your audience. Building trust among your audience is certainly one of the goals for your social media strategy. Consistency helps with this too. Delivering hIgh-quality content consistently will ensure a constant uptick in follower numbers and also engagement on your posts as social media algorithms promote these aspects.
Humanize Your Social Presence
One of the biggest shifts we have seen is how faces and voices get more attention on social media platforms than brands ever will. Use this to your advantage. Your social media handle is an extension of your brand. People like interacting with people and not brands. So make sure that you humanize your social media presence.
Here are some faces that you can put to make your content more ‘human’-
- Thought leaders,
- Co-founders and C-suite members from your organization,
- Industry leaders
- Other top voices
Posting content from these profiles will give you good traction on your social media accounts. Leveraging the personal brands of people in your organization will also help you reach more people and increase your followership.
Humanizing your presence also means focusing on content that connects better with the audience. If your brand allows for it, experiment with contextual memes, fun videos, and such engaging content which makes the content less serious but still delivers the message.
Building Your Presence and Getting Noticed
If you’re a startup or if you are starting from scratch on social media handles, getting the first few followers is the most difficult part. Once you get going, it may not seem as difficult. Engaging with trending topics is one of the best ways to get noticed. Use the trending hashtags in your posts and follow content trends that you find relevant to your messaging.
Leveraging influencer marketing is one of the ways to get your brand’s handle noticed. Get in touch with LinkedIn influencers to do a couple of sponsored posts tagging your company page. Endorsements from these known voices will carry a lot of weight. The same strategy can be followed for Instagram and Twitter too. Social media influencers are soon becoming an important part of the ecosystem. So engaging with them early will be beneficial to you.
Fail Fast and Move
Finally, the last bit of wisdom we can impart is this. Don’t be afraid to experiment and fail. There is no better way to find what works and what doesn’t. Yes, it is important to make sure that it does not negatively impact your brand. But beyond this, experimenting with various types of content and formats is worth it.
Your content strategy for social networks will evolve through this experimentation. As you gain more experience and understand what resonates with your audience, the task of creating content will become much easier.
Building a presence on LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram is not easy. This is especially the case if you are doing it organically. Most platform algorithms restrict the organic reach of your posts, and hence it is an uphill task to grow a following from scratch.
Consistent effort, high-quality content, and a lot of planning and experimentation are the way. While there are some proven hacks, there are no shortcuts to this. You need to put in the work.
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Thank you so much for reading Building A Social Presence From Scratch: How to Leverage Effective Content and a Consistent Post Cadence to Build a 5-Figure Following on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram . We really appreciate it! If you have any questions about our article, or can suggest any other topics you think we should explore, feel free to let us know.
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Robb Fahrion is a Co-Founder and Partner of Flying V Group. He is passionate about helping businesses grow using the power of the internet. Robb graduated from Chapman University in Orange, CA and currently resides in Costa Mesa, CA. Robb enjoys writing about digital marketing, helping his clients turn their dreams into reality, and he is a HUGE Mike Trout fan.