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Social Media: Is It Meaningful?

May 10, 2018
Mark Turner, co-founder and CEO of The Takeover a successful marketing boutique in Shropshire, looks at the world of social media and how it’s used.

If we want social media to have a real and tangible effect on its audience and their interactions or buying habits, it first has to be ‘meaningful’: used as a platform that benefits your business; it has to have a specific purpose behind it.   

Meaningful: is social media helping to solve a business problem?    
Social media can solve all sorts of business problems, but to capitalise on it you first need to understand how it can be used. Looking at the storage world specifically, there are generally two key capabilities to focus upon: its use as a representative tool to help tell the story of your brand; and its power to drive traffic.     

Let’s start by looking at five social media business benefits:   

1: Improved brand awareness  

One of the best and most brilliant things about social media is that it’s an unparalleled tool with regards to the way it can be used to increase brand awareness. One out of every five minutes spent online is taken up by Facebook browsing, with an ever growing number of individuals using social media platforms as a type of search engine, to help them gain an idea of your trustworthiness and complete some personalised market research. This means that a friendly face to represent your business’ Instagram account, or positive interaction on Twitter, can make all the difference in shaping how clients (both current and future) will see you.  


2: Increased search rankings  
 

Did you know that social media accounts for around 10% of your SEO ranking factor? Well now you do. This is important because it means that the more social media shares and interactions you receive, the higher you will be placed in Google search results. So linking social media accounts to your website is essential. You should also try varying the content links that you share on these platforms, so that they connect to multiple pages on your site. This will not only make the user experience more relevant to their interests, but will also reduce your bounce rate and send you soaring though the rankings.   

3: Increased appeal  
 

One cost-effective way to advertise your business is to use geo-targeting to make sure that you’re seen by a specific local audience and doing so will undoubtedly help you to increase your appeal and relevance. Let’s say, for example, that your ideal customer lives within a 10-mile radius of your business premises. With the help of social media networks like Facebook and Twitter, you can directly target this audience so that you’re communicating the right content to the most receptive people. 

4: Enhanced recognisability   

Well-known brands sell their products because everybody knows who they are and they trust them. You can do this with the help of social media, which can be used to build your relationships and increase your fame. Whether it’s turning your buyers into an extension of your brand through encouraging them to act as your online representatives, or using the opportunity to interact with prospective customers and business contacts by following, commenting, liking, retweeting, sharing, or joining groups where you can demonstrate your expertise, you can now connect online like never before. This is networking for the digital generation, and it’s there and waiting for anyone who wants to capitalise on it.   

5: Improved customer interactions

Strong customer service is essential to every business and social media can help you to deliver it, making it so that you’re always available for your customers and can respond instantly. A perfect tool to set you apart from the competition, it means you can work harder and more efficiently to help you surge ahead and succeed.     

The biggest social media trends of 2018  

Social media is a modern marvel that you can’t afford to ignore. To take full advantage of it, you need to understand the latest trends and how you can capitalise on these. 

1: Facebook algorithm – what’s all the noise about?  

Facebook has chosen 2018 to deprioritise business and media content in newsfeeds. It was Mark Zuckerberg himself who announced this change as part of his overarching plan to ensure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent.  “Recently, we’ve gotten feedback from our community that public content – posts from businesses, brands, and media – is crowding out the personal moments that lead us to connect with each other,” he said.   

So businesses needs to take a new approach to continue using Facebook to their advantage, so we suggest posting timely information that is relevant to your company, with a focus on quality as opposed to quantity. Rather than posting offers and deals alone, tell stories about your team, your customers, or the positive impact you’ve had on the wider community. Keep posts varied, sharing a variety of images, links, videos, questions, and so on, all of which are true to your brand and instantly recognisable as belonging to you.

2: Ephemeral content 
 

‘Ephemeral’ is not a word that we hear very often, but it means something that only endures for a short period, such as on Instagram or Facebook. Although this may last for no longer than 24 hours, it still gives you a unique chance to showcase your storage solutions in a new and exciting way. Because this content appears at the top of your followers’ feeds, it can make sure that your brand stays firmly in the forefront of their minds. We advise using it as a daily newsflash, where you share everything including a smattering of babies, dogs, and doughnuts just because they’re guaranteed to be a hit!  

3: Video, video, video   

Did you know that 90% of all the content shared by social media users in 2017 was video-based? It’s time to make this a part of your online marketing strategy. Remember that you have to capture your audience’s attention in around three seconds flat, so make that starting sequence count.   

 

 

Mark Turner 

Co-founder and CEO of The Takeover a successful marketing boutique based in Shropshire. Mark has extensive business experience working in multiple fast paced retail sectors including Self Storage. Speaking at this year’s Self Storage Association annual conference in Paris, talking all things digital marketing. 

 



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