How to use social media more effectively

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
13 Mar 2018

Tzhe’ela is a BackEnd Engineer for the Services Team here at Lightful. Last week she attended a tech event and wanted to share what she learnt.

This year I celebrated International Women’s Day at TECH(K)NOW Day with other tech enthusiasts in the spirit of #PressForProgress. Like previous TECH(K)NOW events, there were interesting talks and hands-on workshops for beginners and advanced techies alike. The agenda covered everything from pure HTML\CSS basics, to Deep Learning and AI – and all for free.

The session that stood out for me (and is so relevant to what we do at Lightful) was the brilliantly energetic Dr. Aygul Zagidullina’s talk on Using Social Media Effectively for Your Organisation. Dr Zagidullina is currently Director of Social Media at MotaWord and has previously worked at Google and Todoist.

Data is still one of the key areas that businesses and organisations, big and small alike, tend to overlook. When you stop and think about it, you realise that all the data you need is readily available; however, what most organisations fail to do is to set aside the time and budget needed for research and analysis.

Social media strategy framework

Dr Zagidullina shared a social media strategy framework and said that even when you don’t have enough of your own data to analyse (or you don’t know how to), all you need to do is to review your competition. Take a look at how your competitors use social media as this will provide some insights to help you reach your target audience. Take a look at what platforms they are on, the times they usually post and what success rate they had with their posts (Likes, comments, shares, retweets etc). Do they always use images? Do they have clear calls to action? Then take those learnings and apply them to your own channels.

The session was fascinating and packed with useful tips. Here are the top ten tips I came away with:

  1. Do your homework before you start and set goals.
  2. Communicate with stories, not products or services.
  3. Posts with images are 40% more likely to catch people’s attention.
  4. Always be on the lookout for marketing opportunities – check out the Oreo Superbowl blackout as a case study. For charities, awareness days offer these opportunities to reach more people.
  5. Create moments to share with your audience – emphasise the shared values that bring you all together.
  6. Don’t be afraid to use relevant hashtags as they will help people find your content.
  7. Remind your followers why they followed you to begin with.
  8. Communicate your brand values through images or videos.
  9. Analysing your site traffic is a good starting point to see which platform generates the most traffic. Then try to improve the content on your other platforms too.
  10. Assisted conversion in Google analytics can help you understand how your small actions help the conversion ratio – the picture is always bigger than the ‘last click’.

Apart from the top tips above, one of the highlights of the talk for me was the discussion around utilising hashtags on different platforms and paying attention to “dark social”. This term simply refers to social sharing that we cannot track, i.e. sharing on emails and in private messages such as WhatsApp.

According to Dr Zagidullina, if your target audience is over 55 years old then almost half of them are sharing content via email or messenger apps. So on the surface, you may think that your posts aren’t that successful, but chances are they’re being shared where you can’t necessarily see them. One way to track them is to always use a URL shortener so you can see how many clicks there are on the link.

Lastly, if you get that dreaded question, ‘but what’s the ROI of social media’, show them this brilliant talk by Gary Vaynerchuk:

Are you using data to inform your social media strategy? Let us know by tweeting us at @Lightful.

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