While social media feels like a black hole of selfies, political debates, and apology posts, it is an essential community-building tool. Businesses shouldn’t forsake one of their most important resources. Social media can help brands connect with followers in ways they couldn’t otherwise. It breaks down barriers and creates a more trusting relationship between the brand and the customer. Let’s take a look at what makes social media so important to brand communities.
More than Social Media Marketing
While you can have an undefined, yet active follower base, it is easier to have an actionable plan with a formalized group. This would be with an established page on Facebook or other social media. This doesn’t mean just using social media marketing. While these free or paid commodities are useful, the social media communities stretch far beyond that.
Key elements of dedicated but informal social media groups are user-generated content, live events, and attentive community management. The goal is to cultivate meaningful relationships with your followers. Interactions with your audience make an impact, whether it’s sharing their content, responding to comments, or other methods of contact. It evolves followers into a community or fans coming together.
While making sure to be authentic beyond social media marketing, you can’t completely discount it. Algorithms and updates are constantly changing, making business pages less likely to show up in news feeds. Marketing ensures that sponsored content gets through to followers. In the last few years, Facebook especially has made it a little easier to link groups to business pages. This allows businesses to reach their followers without going broke on marketing.
How can a Social Media Community Help Your Brand?
A social media community offers users connection, which is what they want most while networking. Your audience finds like-minded individuals in other members. No matter the topic, or the brand, every member of your community is connected by at least one thing they agree on.
Social media communities can maximize selling power, due to the magical power of personal recommendation. Word of mouth is the best advertisement and will always cultivate the highest quality leads. A customer posting a review directly to a group without being censored is an authentic and free advertisement in your favor. While you risk poor reviews as well, it also gives you a chance to build trust by reaching out and helping dissatisfied customers. Resolving a complaint positively reflects well on your brand to other customers.
A social media group also helps your sales funnel move a little faster. People who join the group skip past the early stages, straight to the middle and lower parts of the funnel. Notifications and updates about the content other users are posting in the group is more likely to push them to purchase. Satisfied group members sharing about their purchase will help undecided members make up their minds. It also helps fast-track buyers to the loyalty and advocacy stage.
Social Media Branding
Social media branding is a continuation of the branding you have already done during ad campaigns. It’s when an organization creates a unique brand persona to share with the public. Using social media to spread the persona helps build a stronger connection with your audience.
Your brand is defined by the values of your company and the product or services you provide. It will be communicated through the stories you tell and the content you share. What kind of content should you be sharing? Some things to consider are:
- Relevant talking points – Ask members questions about their interests, lives, and aspirations.
- Uplifting content – Establish a positive tone in your group, and give your members a reason to feel good.
- Personal content – Break down the barriers between brand and consumer. Offer deeper insights into company life and your team’s own opinions.
- Exclusive offerings – These users are your brand’s biggest fans. You should reward them with sneak peeks, coupons, and other exclusive offers.
- Product/sales posts – Use these wisely. You do need to make sales-based posts, but you don’t want to break the feeling of community by over-advertising. It’s a balance.
Build Your Community with StayTouch
StayTouch is an app that combines modern networking and easy relationship management. Build a community with ease, instantly exchange information, and explore scheduling and time management functions. Make notes and create reminders to reach out regularly to your network of contacts, helping you build a stronger community. Contact us to learn more.