Facebook and Instagram are platforms with immensely under priced attention, a statement that is consistently made by the social media guru, Gary Vaynerchuk. What does he mean by this? Simply put, it’s a whole lot cheaper to run ads on these platforms vs print ads on magazines while still having equal, or sometimes more, reach to a targeted audience. So, it’s a given that all businesses should jump right in, right? I’ll be answering this throughout the post.
As a content creator myself, I stay pretty active on Instagram. I spend a considerable time observing the changes that are occurring on the platform, particularly on the type of content that’s being put out by business profiles.
More recently, I see a lot more ads from businesses on my story feed on Instagram. It’s great that businesses are starting to allocate their marketing budget to platforms that allow for more specified reach than something like cable/TV. However, the issue is that most of these ads are not targeted to the right audience and the content has been poorly put together.
In regards to content quality, I am not referring to the quality of the camera used for production. The cost of the camera is most definitely not part of the equation in effective content marketing on social media. For example, there are plenty of influencers that primarily use their iPhones that have far greater engagement with the audience than a car ad produced using the most expensive camera equipment with highly paid experts. Ouch.
One of the major components of effective content marketing is the brand story. People don’t buy MacBooks because of the features of the laptop. Technically speaking, MacBooks don’t have the best features compared to other high-performance laptops. It’s the story put together by Steve Jobs and his team that drives the fanatical behavior of Apple consumers.
While it’s understandable that small businesses are limited in their resources compared to Apple, it is still important to be conscious of their intent and strategy in content marketing before jumping into it. Otherwise, businesses will be throwing money down the drain with ads that have no ROI and putting a lot of time, effort, and resources to create content that doesn’t convert.
Here are 5 questions I typically ask my clients that are just starting their social media marketing efforts. (These are not in any specific order)
1. Is it necessary for my business to enter all social media platforms?
2. What is the primary purpose of entering the digital space through social media?
3. Will the content marketing efforts address a particular bottleneck within my business?
4. Who is my target audience and how do we produce the right form of content?
5. What story does my business want to tell through the content?
The primary reason as to why it’s important for businesses to answer these types of questions is that the lack of intent in the brand story creation results in the consumers creating the story for the brands. Although this may not entirely be a bad thing, things could definitely go the wrong way when you let the chains loose. For example, running hundreds of ads of images with charts and diagrams along with tons of text within the image (which are all bad practices for content focused on images) might trigger a sense of spamming from the consumer’s perspective.
Answering the questions presented above might also help you decide your business needs to start an Instagram page vs. a blog series on LinkedIn. There is no “one size fits all” bundle in building a proper strategy for brand building purposes, and not all businesses need to be on every social media platform.
Not all businesses will need an active Instagram page, and not all businesses should take the same approach to connect with their audience.
Hopefully, my points had you thinking about different aspects that need to be addressed before jumping on board unto all social media platforms.
By Isaac Jeong
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