Kensium's Pro Tips For Social Media Marketing (Part 2)

author

Isaac Herman

min read

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Email
  • Print

A-A+

0.03%
Read

Kensium's Pro Tips For Social Media Marketing (Part 2)

10/11/2020 Categories: ARTICLES

In part one of our deep dive into social media marketing, we investigated the best ways to capitalize on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Now in part two, we'll look at the more creative-minded social media platforms for growing your business: YouTube, Spotify, Reddit, and Pinterest. Social media marketing is all about cutting through the massive amount of visual "noise" that people see online every day. Your goal is to get your target audience's attention and build a relationship between them and your brand. While direct marketing has its place in social media (something we will discuss further in this blog), social media's primary value comes from authentically interacting with your users and providing them with timely and fascinating content.  Remember this as the overall strategy of social media marketing. We'll discuss each platform's advantages, audience, monetary commitment, and online tools.  The secret to social media success, no matter what platform you are using, is cultivating a reciprocal relationship with customers new and old. That requires timely engagement, quality content, and a solidly defined brand. Let's get into the different social platforms. YouTube To create your YouTube marketing strategy, you'll want to start by defining what you want to achieve with the platform. Are you training people on your products and services? Showcasing product demos? Is your goal to entertain, inform, or inspire? And what return do you plan to get out of your investment? YouTube offers a lot of opportunities because it has a whopping 2 billion users worldwide (as of 2019). It's even the second largest search engine on the internet, processing more than 3 billion searches a month. Being on a platform as popular as YouTube can help improve your SEO and overall brand appearance online.  In this section, we'll discuss how to brand your YouTube channel with a channel trailer, the advantages of advertising on YouTube, and a few ideas for marketing videos. Create Your Channel Trailer After creating your basic profile (channel icon, channel description, contact info, and links to your company website), we can upload our content. One key aspect of YouTube channels that gets overlooked is that you can customize how your channel appears to subscribers and unsubscribed visitors.  Now you can offer content to tantalize visitors into subscribing. Start by creating a channel trailer. Your channel trailer is a teaser for the rest of your content, as well as your company brand. The most important part of your channel trailer should be a clear Call-to-Action (CTA). Put the CTA in your video description, mention it in the video, and add a clickable popup while the video is playing. Add subtitles to your video. You should actually be doing this with all your content, because nowadays more than 60% of views are from mobile devices, usually with the sound turned off.  Keep it short and straightforward. You want to deliver an easily understood message to the viewer while taking as little of their time as possible. To stay concise, we recommend working diligently on the video script.  The online video editor Animoto has a stellar example of an effective channel trailer:  Advertising on YouTube On YouTube, you can promote your business channel with AdWords campaigns since Google owns the platform. You can also: 'Sell' ad space on your channel – aka monetization: If other companies are promoting something that fits well with what you do and wants to advertise it, they can do so on your channel or page.  Utilize the Google Advertising Platform Search Console: Using the same search console as Google, you can set your keywords, the types of people you are targeting, and the promise that your video will appear in the right places.  Promote your videos: In addition to growing your channel organically, you can invest in advertising on YouTube.  Let's look at some of the YouTube platform's advantages in a bit more detail.  YouTube Ads allow you to target your ad campaigns according to keyword, category, and topic. This methodology is better than relying on demographics-based targeting because you gain a higher percentage of people whose interests correlate with your industry.  People love videos, so a lot is going for you if you've got people on staff with experience writing, directing, and editing online video content. If you genuinely want YouTube to be a large part of your content marketing strategy, begin looking for valuable personnel. YouTube's platform includes advanced analytics that helps you understand how well your ads are doing. You can see data on how long someone watches the ad when they close it out and which types of ads are performing the best among your audience. You can see data on how long someone watches the ad, when they close it out, and which types of ads are performing the best among your audience. These insights will help you perfect your YouTube ad campaigns for optimal performance. For ads, YouTube uses a cost-per-view (CPV) model, which means you only pay when someone engages with your video ad. If your ad gets skipped, you aren't charged for that view. The exact cost per click varies on keyword competitiveness, but, on average, it's around $0.06. Once you set your daily campaign budget, YouTube will display your ad until the daily budget is spent. Types of Marketing Videos When you begin your YouTube content marketing, try experimenting with different videos early on to see which ones may work and which ones may not. You want to pinpoint exactly the type of content that keeps your audience coming back for more. Here are a few ideas to get you started: Listicles: Listicles are popular because they are so easily consumable; even if you don't read the whole thing, chances are there will be a couple of bullet points that stick with you. They've become popular in a video format, especially if you're highlighting the product or service you offer. That way, the customer gets to see what you're selling in action. For example, try something like "The ten most innovative ways that you can use (your product/service).”).    How-to videos: Viewers appreciate tutorials because they provide a lot of value in the long run. These are especially helpful if you sell tech services. People will need to learn to get started, and video tutorials are fantastic because people can pause/restart them at a moment's notice. It's much easier to work on something in parallel with a tutorial when you can use the video to go at your own pace.   Product videos: Product videos walk viewers through how to use certain features and any product updates or new offerings. Make these visually appealing and stylish to hold the viewer's attention, because you want to hype up your brand. If you're excited about what you're selling in these videos, it will feed your viewers' excitement.   Spotify More and more, we're beginning to see that the standard definition of social networks is expanding. Spotify is a music streaming service that has been around since 2008 but has since developed a lot of their functionality to make it more social.  Integrations with Facebook and Instagram allow brands on Spotify to embed songs and playlists on those sites. Companies use this to create their own cross-platform "auditory" brand identities.  Music is one of the more personal forms of media in our society. We view the music we listen to as an extension of ourselves, a form of art that can both speak to us and for us.  Music can be a potent tool for a company that wants to define its brand and connect with its users.   Using the power music can have on people, it's time to figure out how to implement your marketing strategy using Spotify. Focus your Spotify strategy on three pillars: Playlists, paid ads, and podcasting. Playlists Creating company-branded playlists is a useful method for obtaining organic traffic. One-third of all listening time on Spotify is spent on user-generated playlists, which equates to about eight hours a week listening.  What's cool is targeting people in specific moods. For example, if you sell exercise equipment, you could create your own branded workout playlist and promote it. Some brands organize their songs around significant events like the Super Bowl, award shows, and holidays.  Spotify provides a few pointers on creating appealing playlists from their updated Brand Playlist terms: Make sure you have at least 20 songs on the playlist, then steadily increase the number of songs when you begin getting listeners. This will have your listeners coming back and shows that your company has an ongoing commitment to its content.  Don't repeat the same artist more than once. It implies that the artist endorsed the playlist to promote themselves.  Research the artists that you are adding to your playlist. It's possible they could oppose your brand or have gotten some recent bad publicity. Paid Spotify Ads By the end of March 2020, Spotify had 286 million monthly active users. Out of these, 156 million users had ad-supported (aka "free") accounts. Although that's only over 50% of the total user base, compare it to their competitors: Apple Music is estimated to have only 80 million customers in July 2020, while Amazon music had 55 million users at the beginning of 2020. Spotify offers targeted advertising campaigns beginning at approximately $250 each. A little more expensive than other social platforms, but Spotify has a few key benefits:  First, users aged 18-34 (Millennials) make up over 55% of Spotify's user base. This is a coveted demographic since Charles Schwab's 2019 Modern Wealth survey showed that 49% of millennials aged 23-38 overspend on products advertised through social media.  Second, Spotify offers audio, video, and display ads. You can entirely create and manage your video, display, and audio ads through the Spotify Ad Studio. Depending on your budget, you may end up going with one or more of these three ad formats. When starting in the Spotify Ad Studio, you can run audio ads at a minimum of $250 budget. Third, Spotify's ads cut through the fluff. Here's what that means: You probably scroll through hundreds of ads you don't even notice while surfing the internet. Since you're consuming everything visually, they get diluted with the massive amount of content on your screen.  But with Spotify, the listener is locked in. The listener is hyper-engaged with their music before the advertisement comes on, and since the ad is unskippable, they will end up listening to it. Even if they're feeling spiteful and decide to take their headphones out for the ad, the ads are short enough (approximately 30 seconds each) so that it's not exactly worth it. Chances are they won't take their headphones out on the next one.  Spotify Podcasts Last year, Spotify pledged to invest $500 million in podcasting. After their investment in 2019, Spotify saw a 200% increase in podcast listening year-over-year (YoY).  Spotify decided to model their podcast strategy after Netflix. Netflix invested heavily in original programming, making it stand out over other streaming services that

media platforms for growing your business: YouTube, Spotify, Reddit, and Pinterest.

Social media marketing is all about cutting through the massive amount of visual "noise" that people see online every day. Your goal is to get your target audience's attention and build a relationship between them and your brand. While direct marketing has its place in social media (something we will discuss further in this blog), social media's primary value comes from authentically interacting with your users and providing them with timely and fascinating content. 

Remember this as the overall strategy of social media marketing. We'll discuss each platform's advantages, audience, monetary commitment, and online tools. 

The secret to social media success, no matter what platform you are using, is cultivating a reciprocal relationship with customers new and old. That requires timely engagement, quality content, and a solidly defined brand.

Let's get into the different social platforms.

youtube logo

YouTube

To create your YouTube marketing strategy, you'll want to start by defining what you want to achieve with the platform. Are you training people on your products and services? Showcasing product demos? Is your goal to entertain, inform, or inspire? And what return do you plan to get out of your investment?

YouTube offers a lot of opportunities because it has a whopping 2 billion users worldwide (as of 2019). It's even the second largest search engine on the internet, processing more than 3 billion searches a month. Being on a platform as popular as YouTube can help improve your SEO and overall brand appearance online. 

In this section, we'll discuss how to brand your YouTube channel with a channel trailer, the advantages of advertising on YouTube, and a few ideas for marketing videos.

YouTube Stats

Create Your Channel Trailer

After creating your basic profile (channel icon, channel description, contact info, and links to your company website), we can upload our content. One key aspect of YouTube channels that gets overlooked is that you can customize how your channel appears to subscribers and unsubscribed visitors. 

Now you can offer content to tantalize visitors into subscribing. Start by creating a channel trailer. Your channel trailer is a teaser for the rest of your content, as well as your company brand.

  • The most important part of your channel trailer should be a clear Call-to-Action (CTA). Put the CTA in your video description, mention it in the video, and add a clickable popup while the video is playing.
  • Add subtitles to your video. You should actually be doing this with all your content, because nowadays more than 60% of views are from mobile devices, usually with the sound turned off. 
  • Keep it short and straightforward. You want to deliver an easily understood message to the viewer while taking as little of their time as possible. To stay concise, we recommend working diligently on the video script. 

The online video editor Animoto has a stellar example of an effective channel trailer: 

Advertising on YouTube

On YouTube, you can promote your business channel with AdWords campaigns since Google owns the platform. You can also:

  • 'Sell' ad space on your channel – aka monetization: If other companies are promoting something that fits well with what you do and wants to advertise it, they can do so on your channel or page. 
  • Utilize the Google Advertising Platform Search Console: Using the same search console as Google, you can set your keywords, the types of people you are targeting, and the promise that your video will appear in the right places. 
  • Promote your videos: In addition to growing your channel organically, you can invest in advertising on YouTube. 

Let's look at some of the YouTube platform's advantages in a bit more detail. 

  • YouTube Ads allow you to target your ad campaigns according to keyword, category, and topic. This methodology is better than relying on demographics-based targeting because you gain a higher percentage of people whose interests correlate with your industry. 
  • People love videos, so a lot is going for you if you've got people on staff with experience writing, directing, and editing online video content. If you genuinely want YouTube to be a large part of your content marketing strategy, begin looking for valuable personnel.
  • YouTube's platform includes advanced analytics that helps you understand how well your ads are doing. You can see data on how long someone watches the ad when they close it out and which types of ads are performing the best among your audience. You can see data on how long someone watches the ad, when they close it out, and which types of ads are performing the best among your audience. These insights will help you perfect your YouTube ad campaigns for optimal performance.
  • For ads, YouTube uses a cost-per-view (CPV) model, which means you only pay when someone engages with your video ad. If your ad gets skipped, you aren't charged for that view. The exact cost per click varies on keyword competitiveness, but, on average, it's around $0.06. Once you set your daily campaign budget, YouTube will display your ad until the daily budget is spent.

Types of Marketing Videos

When you begin your YouTube content marketing, try experimenting with different videos early on to see which ones may work and which ones may not. You want to pinpoint exactly the type of content that keeps your audience coming back for more.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Listicles: Listicles are popular because they are so easily consumable; even if you don't read the whole thing, chances are there will be a couple of bullet points that stick with you. They've become popular in a video format, especially if you're highlighting the product or service you offer. That way, the customer gets to see what you're selling in action. For example, try something like "The ten most innovative ways that you can use (your product/service).”).   
  • How-to videos: Viewers appreciate tutorials because they provide a lot of value in the long run. These are especially helpful if you sell tech services. People will need to learn to get started, and video tutorials are fantastic because people can pause/restart them at a moment's notice. It's much easier to work on something in parallel with a tutorial when you can use the video to go at your own pace.  
  • Product videos: Product videos walk viewers through how to use certain features and any product updates or new offerings. Make these visually appealing and stylish to hold the viewer's attention, because you want to hype up your brand. If you're excited about what you're selling in these videos, it will feed your viewers' excitement.  

Spotify logo

Spotify

More and more, we're beginning to see that the standard definition of social networks is expanding. Spotify is a music streaming service that has been around since 2008 but has since developed a lot of their functionality to make it more social.  Integrations with Facebook and Instagram allow brands on Spotify to embed songs and playlists on those sites. Companies use this to create their own cross-platform "auditory" brand identities. 

Music is one of the more personal forms of media in our society. We view the music we listen to as an extension of ourselves, a form of art that can both speak to us and for us.  Music can be a potent tool for a company that wants to define its brand and connect with its users.  

Using the power music can have on people, it's time to figure out how to implement your marketing strategy using Spotify. Focus your Spotify strategy on three pillars: Playlists, paid ads, and podcasting.

Playlists

Creating company-branded playlists is a useful method for obtaining organic traffic. One-third of all listening time on Spotify is spent on user-generated playlists, which equates to about eight hours a week listening. 

What's cool is targeting people in specific moods. For example, if you sell exercise equipment, you could create your own branded workout playlist and promote it. Some brands organize their songs around significant events like the Super Bowl, award shows, and holidays. 

Spotify provides a few pointers on creating appealing playlists from their updated Brand Playlist terms:

  • Make sure you have at least 20 songs on the playlist, then steadily increase the number of songs when you begin getting listeners. This will have your listeners coming back and shows that your company has an ongoing commitment to its content. 
  • Don't repeat the same artist more than once. It implies that the artist endorsed the playlist to promote themselves. 
  • Research the artists that you are adding to your playlist. It's possible they could oppose your brand or have gotten some recent bad publicity.

spotify comparison photo

Paid Spotify Ads

By the end of March 2020, Spotify had 286 million monthly active users. Out of these, 156 million users had ad-supported (aka "free") accounts. Although that's only over 50% of the total user base, compare it to their competitors: Apple Music is estimated to have only 80 million customers in July 2020, while Amazon music had 55 million users at the beginning of 2020.

Spotify offers targeted advertising campaigns beginning at approximately $250 each. A little more expensive than other social platforms, but Spotify has a few key benefits: 

First, users aged 18-34 (Millennials) make up over 55% of Spotify's user base. This is a coveted demographic since Charles Schwab's 2019 Modern Wealth survey showed that 49% of millennials aged 23-38 overspend on products advertised through social media. 

Second, Spotify offers audio, video, and display ads. You can entirely create and manage your video, display, and audio ads through the Spotify Ad Studio. Depending on your budget, you may end up going with one or more of these three ad formats. When starting in the Spotify Ad Studio, you can run audio ads at a minimum of $250 budget.

Third, Spotify's ads cut through the fluff. Here's what that means: You probably scroll through hundreds of ads you don't even notice while surfing the internet. Since you're consuming everything visually, they get diluted with the massive amount of content on your screen. 

But with Spotify, the listener is locked in. The listener is hyper-engaged with their music before the advertisement comes on, and since the ad is unskippable, they will end up listening to it. Even if they're feeling spiteful and decide to take their headphones out for the ad, the ads are short enough (approximately 30 seconds each) so that it's not exactly worth it. Chances are they won't take their headphones out on the next one. 

spotify podcast image

Spotify Podcasts

Last year, Spotify pledged to invest $500 million in podcasting. After their investment in 2019, Spotify saw a 200% increase in podcast listening year-over-year (YoY). 

Spotify decided to model their podcast strategy after Netflix. Netflix invested heavily in original programming, making it stand out over other streaming services that merely rotate older shows and movies. That business model inspired Spotify to obtain the exclusive rights to some precious IP that would draw listeners away from other streaming services. 

This year, they signed an exclusivity deal with one of the world's biggest podcasts, The Joe Rogan Experience, for just over $100 million. Former First Lady Michelle Obama signed with Spotify in May to produce her show, The Michelle Obama Podcast. And Spotify has even become the official home of DC Comics for podcasts.  

Like music, podcasts are an especially personal form of media. Podcasts take it even further because you are listening to personalities you enjoy for hours at a time. Communities are built around everything from true crime to technology to comedy, because sharing an experience around a common interest appeals to just about anyone.  

Podcasts can help build and maintain a steady audience, but they require time, planning, sound mixing, and ongoing collaboration. So before you jump into podcast production, let's explore the potential benefits they offer: 

  • Podcasts can establish you as an expert in your industry, a voice of authority on whatever you may be selling. If you're in the garment industry, a fashion-forward podcast may get you more conversions since people want to buy from credible people and brands. 
  • If you wrote a blog post that's been gaining popularity, consider repurposing it for the podcast. You already know the topic is something your audience is interested in, and now you can bring it to an even bigger audience. 
  • Put Call-To-Actions in your podcast episodes. If your company releases a new product soon or just wants people to subscribe to their newsletter, mention that to the audience. You can even get a customer testimonial on the episode if you're feeling ambitious. 

reddit logo

Reddit

Reddit is one of the biggest, yet most underrated social media marketing platforms for online businesses. As of October 2020, Reddit is ranked the sixth most visited website in the United States (#17 globally), with an average daily user time of 11:29 compared to Facebook's 9:34, according to Alexa.com. The website is currently beating Twitter and LinkedIn in terms of daily traffic. 

Reddit has its own "feel" to it; it's a little hard to explain, but let's just say it helps to be fluent in sarcasm. It's referred to as the "front page of the internet" not only for its news and social aggregation but because it's where a lot of memes, viral videos, and internet terms are spawned. 

How to Engage and Market on Reddit

Unless you've paid for it as a sponsored post, do not come onto Reddit communities and begin directly advertising. Redditors are passionate about the communities they contribute to and dislike it when brands attempt to use a "subreddit" (a Reddit page dedicated to a specific subject) to sell products or services. Despite the simplistic layout, please don't confuse it with Craigslist. Posting apparent promotional content and advertisements on subreddits will get you nowhere fast. 

If you plan to market on Reddit, you should adopt the following best practices:

  • Add some history to the account you create. Due to the fair amount of bots, trolls, and "throwaway accounts" on the site, it's become standard practice for users to check out each other's profiles. No one is going to take the word of a three-day-old account that's done nothing but promote products or services. Become an authentic participant on the website and learn the culture of inside jokes and massive comment threads. 
  • The rule of thumb for many Reddit communities is that you need to contribute 80% of the time, then self-promote for the other 20%. Those percentages can move up and down based on your content and the community's rules. It's all up to the mods, heavy users appointed to moderate discussion, and rules within subreddits. 
  • If you have fun on Reddit, other users can tell. Sharing a genuine fascination with community discussion is infectious to other people and gets them engaged. 

How To Create A Successful Reddit Presence For Your Brand

Here's a quick roadmap to getting started on Reddit. 

Roadmap graphic

Create an Account

First things first, register for a Reddit account. The perfect username is one that includes one of your brand keywords and turns it into something lighthearted. For example, if you work for a candy company, try something like "TheRealWillyWonka." 

Customize Your Brand's Newsfeed

Find all subreddits that may be relevant to your brand, then subscribe and start exploring. After identifying your target audience, start subscribing to all the subreddits relevant to your brand. One of the easiest ways to do this is through Reddit's native subreddit search bar. There's even a subreddit you can use called r/FindaReddit!

Build Original Content

Don't merely recycle your brand's latest blog or Facebook post. Content should be original and created only for your target Reddit audience. Be consistent about your postings and be patient; if you only get a few comments and few upvotes, you're still heading in the right direction.

Be Consistent

Keep up with your Reddit activity and keep contributing to the community. Think of it like becoming a "regular" at a bar; keep showing up, posting, and talking with people. There's no magic answer to the amount of frequency and volume you should have on the site. Just remember that people respond to authenticity, so don't overthink it. Respond naturally to comments that you think will lead to valuable discussion. 

Remember: Using Reddit as a marketing platform is advanced organic marketing, so you need to tap into your primary research to figure out the best plan of attack for your chosen audience.

Reddit Ads

The beauty of Reddit is that its users actively curate the content they see on their homepages. By subscribing to different subreddits, they build their own personalized browsing experiences. Reddit's algorithm filters out anything unrelated to their users' subscriptions and keeps any content and advertisements that are connected. 

This makes Reddit advertisements a bit of a PPC gravy train: instead of making estimations at user interests, Redditors are openly sharing their activity. It's much easier for businesses to locate and target their key audiences. In a nutshell, Reddit ads provide cheap, low-funnel traffic with precise targeting. 

Reddit's ad revenue is much lower than other social networks, generating approximately $119 million in 2019 compared to Twitter's $885 million. This means you're able to buy cheaper ads with fewer competitors across the site. If you choose to run paid ads, you can choose to target users in individual subreddits or just the general interest category. 

For example, if you are in the business of selling home kitchen supplies, try targeting subreddits like r/recipes or r/cookingforbeginners. As a general rule of thumb, find subreddits with at least 5,000 subscribers and over 100 daily visits. 

pinterest

Pinterest

Pinterest is probably the most visual-centric out of the social networks we've explored in this blog. The platform is centered around creating "boards," which are collages of photos and links organized by topic. 

With over 335 million people using Pinterest every month, don't treat your brand's Pinterest boards as one-way advertising. Build a community by reaching out and interacting with your users, and eventually, they will become both fans and customers.

Pinterest has gained a reputation for being the home of aesthetes. These are people who take pride in the art and craftsmanship of products they buy and want to show them off. Pinterest users (called Pinners) often come to the website for design inspiration, whether they are planning parties, weddings, DIY projects, or holiday decorations. Their attitude is distinctly different from Reddit users: Pinners are open and amenable to branded content.

If you choose a Pinterest Business Account, you will gain access to Pinterest Analytics and other features, including a visual search tool, a native video player, and the ability to run Pinterest ads if you choose. Let's check out some tactics you can take to have a big impact on your followers.

pinterest graphic

Using Pinterest Boards to Leverage Visual Content

To take advantage of Pinterest Boards, learn to master Pins. Pins are what your followers and potential customers use to save the products they like. When your followers click on one of your Pins, they should be sent to your website, preferably a designated product page for that Pin.  

Of course, the only way to get people to click on your Pins is to have "Pin-worthy" images for what you're selling. 93% of Pinterest users say they use it when they are planning to make a large purchase. To convert these users to customers, you're going to want to become an expert at visual content marketing. Here are a few tips to get you going on your images:

  • If you're selling a product, don't just have whatever it is sitting there; show someone using and enjoying it. 
  • If you provide a service, in-person candid shots of your customers enjoying said service could make a big difference. Pins that show a product or service in action are 67% more likely to drive offline sales lift.
  • Be sure to take pictures in portrait mode rather than landscape. According to Pinterest, 85% of Pinners use their mobile app, so applying a 2:3 aspect ratio to all your photos ensures they show up correctly across mobile devices. 
  • Combining images and creative text can make a big difference. Strong call-to-actions and well-researched keywords will get people excited and clicking. For example, if you sell restaurant or bar supplies, you could create a photo detailing your "Drink of the Summer" recipe, served from one of your branded tumblers. 

Wrap-Up

Although determining your company’s social media course of action may seem daunting, you can avoid feeling overwhelmed by understanding social media marketing trends and using our guides as resources.

Maintaining your social media strategy takes a lot of work, but it pays off in the long run. With proper planning and consistency, you can engage, retain, and monetize your users for as long as possible.  

Ideally, it would be best if you had a team dedicated to social media. If you want more information, advice, and even some free consulting, be sure to check out Kensium's Digital Marketing services.
 

Tags

Body

In part one of our deep dive into social media marketing, we investigated the best ways to capitalize on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Now in part two, we'll look at the more creative-minded social media platforms for growing your business: YouTube, Spotify, Reddit, and Pinterest.

Social media marketing is all about cutting through the massive amount of visual "noise" that people see online every day. Your goal is to get your target audience's attention and build a relationship between them and your brand. While direct marketing has its place in social media (something we will discuss further in this blog), social media's primary value comes from authentically interacting with your users and providing them with timely and fascinating content. 

Remember this as the overall strategy of social media marketing. We'll discuss each platform's advantages, audience, monetary commitment, and online tools. 

The secret to social media success, no matter what platform you are using, is cultivating a reciprocal relationship with customers new and old. That requires timely engagement, quality content, and a solidly defined brand.

Let's get into the different social platforms.

youtube logo

YouTube

To create your YouTube marketing strategy, you'll want to start by defining what you want to achieve with the platform. Are you training people on your products and services? Showcasing product demos? Is your goal to entertain, inform, or inspire? And what return do you plan to get out of your investment?

YouTube offers a lot of opportunities because it has a whopping 2 billion users worldwide (as of 2019). It's even the second largest search engine on the internet, processing more than 3 billion searches a month. Being on a platform as popular as YouTube can help improve your SEO and overall brand appearance online. 

In this section, we'll discuss how to brand your YouTube channel with a channel trailer, the advantages of advertising on YouTube, and a few ideas for marketing videos.

YouTube Stats

Create Your Channel Trailer

After creating your basic profile (channel icon, channel description, contact info, and links to your company website), we can upload our content. One key aspect of YouTube channels that gets overlooked is that you can customize how your channel appears to subscribers and unsubscribed visitors. 

Now you can offer content to tantalize visitors into subscribing. Start by creating a channel trailer. Your channel trailer is a teaser for the rest of your content, as well as your company brand.

  • The most important part of your channel trailer should be a clear Call-to-Action (CTA). Put the CTA in your video description, mention it in the video, and add a clickable popup while the video is playing.
  • Add subtitles to your video. You should actually be doing this with all your content, because nowadays more than 60% of views are from mobile devices, usually with the sound turned off. 
  • Keep it short and straightforward. You want to deliver an easily understood message to the viewer while taking as little of their time as possible. To stay concise, we recommend working diligently on the video script. 

The online video editor Animoto has a stellar example of an effective channel trailer: 

Advertising on YouTube

On YouTube, you can promote your business channel with AdWords campaigns since Google owns the platform. You can also:

  • 'Sell' ad space on your channel – aka monetization: If other companies are promoting something that fits well with what you do and wants to advertise it, they can do so on your channel or page. 
  • Utilize the Google Advertising Platform Search Console: Using the same search console as Google, you can set your keywords, the types of people you are targeting, and the promise that your video will appear in the right places. 
  • Promote your videos: In addition to growing your channel organically, you can invest in advertising on YouTube. 

Let's look at some of the YouTube platform's advantages in a bit more detail. 

  • YouTube Ads allow you to target your ad campaigns according to keyword, category, and topic. This methodology is better than relying on demographics-based targeting because you gain a higher percentage of people whose interests correlate with your industry. 
  • People love videos, so a lot is going for you if you've got people on staff with experience writing, directing, and editing online video content. If you genuinely want YouTube to be a large part of your content marketing strategy, begin looking for valuable personnel.
  • YouTube's platform includes advanced analytics that helps you understand how well your ads are doing. You can see data on how long someone watches the ad when they close it out and which types of ads are performing the best among your audience. You can see data on how long someone watches the ad, when they close it out, and which types of ads are performing the best among your audience. These insights will help you perfect your YouTube ad campaigns for optimal performance.
  • For ads, YouTube uses a cost-per-view (CPV) model, which means you only pay when someone engages with your video ad. If your ad gets skipped, you aren't charged for that view. The exact cost per click varies on keyword competitiveness, but, on average, it's around $0.06. Once you set your daily campaign budget, YouTube will display your ad until the daily budget is spent.

Types of Marketing Videos

When you begin your YouTube content marketing, try experimenting with different videos early on to see which ones may work and which ones may not. You want to pinpoint exactly the type of content that keeps your audience coming back for more.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Listicles: Listicles are popular because they are so easily consumable; even if you don't read the whole thing, chances are there will be a couple of bullet points that stick with you. They've become popular in a video format, especially if you're highlighting the product or service you offer. That way, the customer gets to see what you're selling in action. For example, try something like "The ten most innovative ways that you can use (your product/service).”).   
  • How-to videos: Viewers appreciate tutorials because they provide a lot of value in the long run. These are especially helpful if you sell tech services. People will need to learn to get started, and video tutorials are fantastic because people can pause/restart them at a moment's notice. It's much easier to work on something in parallel with a tutorial when you can use the video to go at your own pace.  
  • Product videos: Product videos walk viewers through how to use certain features and any product updates or new offerings. Make these visually appealing and stylish to hold the viewer's attention, because you want to hype up your brand. If you're excited about what you're selling in these videos, it will feed your viewers' excitement.  

Spotify logo

Spotify

More and more, we're beginning to see that the standard definition of social networks is expanding. Spotify is a music streaming service that has been around since 2008 but has since developed a lot of their functionality to make it more social.  Integrations with Facebook and Instagram allow brands on Spotify to embed songs and playlists on those sites. Companies use this to create their own cross-platform "auditory" brand identities. 

Music is one of the more personal forms of media in our society. We view the music we listen to as an extension of ourselves, a form of art that can both speak to us and for us.  Music can be a potent tool for a company that wants to define its brand and connect with its users.  

Using the power music can have on people, it's time to figure out how to implement your marketing strategy using Spotify. Focus your Spotify strategy on three pillars: Playlists, paid ads, and podcasting.

Playlists

Creating company-branded playlists is a useful method for obtaining organic traffic. One-third of all listening time on Spotify is spent on user-generated playlists, which equates to about eight hours a week listening. 

What's cool is targeting people in specific moods. For example, if you sell exercise equipment, you could create your own branded workout playlist and promote it. Some brands organize their songs around significant events like the Super Bowl, award shows, and holidays. 

Spotify provides a few pointers on creating appealing playlists from their updated Brand Playlist terms:

  • Make sure you have at least 20 songs on the playlist, then steadily increase the number of songs when you begin getting listeners. This will have your listeners coming back and shows that your company has an ongoing commitment to its content. 
  • Don't repeat the same artist more than once. It implies that the artist endorsed the playlist to promote themselves. 
  • Research the artists that you are adding to your playlist. It's possible they could oppose your brand or have gotten some recent bad publicity.

spotify comparison photo

Paid Spotify Ads

By the end of March 2020, Spotify had 286 million monthly active users. Out of these, 156 million users had ad-supported (aka "free") accounts. Although that's only over 50% of the total user base, compare it to their competitors: Apple Music is estimated to have only 80 million customers in July 2020, while Amazon music had 55 million users at the beginning of 2020.

Spotify offers targeted advertising campaigns beginning at approximately $250 each. A little more expensive than other social platforms, but Spotify has a few key benefits: 

First, users aged 18-34 (Millennials) make up over 55% of Spotify's user base. This is a coveted demographic since Charles Schwab's 2019 Modern Wealth survey showed that 49% of millennials aged 23-38 overspend on products advertised through social media. 

Second, Spotify offers audio, video, and display ads. You can entirely create and manage your video, display, and audio ads through the Spotify Ad Studio. Depending on your budget, you may end up going with one or more of these three ad formats. When starting in the Spotify Ad Studio, you can run audio ads at a minimum of $250 budget.

Third, Spotify's ads cut through the fluff. Here's what that means: You probably scroll through hundreds of ads you don't even notice while surfing the internet. Since you're consuming everything visually, they get diluted with the massive amount of content on your screen. 

But with Spotify, the listener is locked in. The listener is hyper-engaged with their music before the advertisement comes on, and since the ad is unskippable, they will end up listening to it. Even if they're feeling spiteful and decide to take their headphones out for the ad, the ads are short enough (approximately 30 seconds each) so that it's not exactly worth it. Chances are they won't take their headphones out on the next one. 

spotify podcast image

Spotify Podcasts

Last year, Spotify pledged to invest $500 million in podcasting. After their investment in 2019, Spotify saw a 200% increase in podcast listening year-over-year (YoY). 

Spotify decided to model their podcast strategy after Netflix. Netflix invested heavily in original programming, making it stand out over other streaming services that merely rotate older shows and movies. That business model inspired Spotify to obtain the exclusive rights to some precious IP that would draw listeners away from other streaming services. 

This year, they signed an exclusivity deal with one of the world's biggest podcasts, The Joe Rogan Experience, for just over $100 million. Former First Lady Michelle Obama signed with Spotify in May to produce her show, The Michelle Obama Podcast. And Spotify has even become the official home of DC Comics for podcasts.  

Like music, podcasts are an especially personal form of media. Podcasts take it even further because you are listening to personalities you enjoy for hours at a time. Communities are built around everything from true crime to technology to comedy, because sharing an experience around a common interest appeals to just about anyone.  

Podcasts can help build and maintain a steady audience, but they require time, planning, sound mixing, and ongoing collaboration. So before you jump into podcast production, let's explore the potential benefits they offer: 

  • Podcasts can establish you as an expert in your industry, a voice of authority on whatever you may be selling. If you're in the garment industry, a fashion-forward podcast may get you more conversions since people want to buy from credible people and brands. 
  • If you wrote a blog post that's been gaining popularity, consider repurposing it for the podcast. You already know the topic is something your audience is interested in, and now you can bring it to an even bigger audience. 
  • Put Call-To-Actions in your podcast episodes. If your company releases a new product soon or just wants people to subscribe to their newsletter, mention that to the audience. You can even get a customer testimonial on the episode if you're feeling ambitious. 

reddit logo

Reddit

Reddit is one of the biggest, yet most underrated social media marketing platforms for online businesses. As of October 2020, Reddit is ranked the sixth most visited website in the United States (#17 globally), with an average daily user time of 11:29 compared to Facebook's 9:34, according to Alexa.com. The website is currently beating Twitter and LinkedIn in terms of daily traffic. 

Reddit has its own "feel" to it; it's a little hard to explain, but let's just say it helps to be fluent in sarcasm. It's referred to as the "front page of the internet" not only for its news and social aggregation but because it's where a lot of memes, viral videos, and internet terms are spawned. 

How to Engage and Market on Reddit

Unless you've paid for it as a sponsored post, do not come onto Reddit communities and begin directly advertising. Redditors are passionate about the communities they contribute to and dislike it when brands attempt to use a "subreddit" (a Reddit page dedicated to a specific subject) to sell products or services. Despite the simplistic layout, please don't confuse it with Craigslist. Posting apparent promotional content and advertisements on subreddits will get you nowhere fast. 

If you plan to market on Reddit, you should adopt the following best practices:

  • Add some history to the account you create. Due to the fair amount of bots, trolls, and "throwaway accounts" on the site, it's become standard practice for users to check out each other's profiles. No one is going to take the word of a three-day-old account that's done nothing but promote products or services. Become an authentic participant on the website and learn the culture of inside jokes and massive comment threads. 
  • The rule of thumb for many Reddit communities is that you need to contribute 80% of the time, then self-promote for the other 20%. Those percentages can move up and down based on your content and the community's rules. It's all up to the mods, heavy users appointed to moderate discussion, and rules within subreddits. 
  • If you have fun on Reddit, other users can tell. Sharing a genuine fascination with community discussion is infectious to other people and gets them engaged. 

How To Create A Successful Reddit Presence For Your Brand

Here's a quick roadmap to getting started on Reddit. 

Roadmap graphic

Create an Account

First things first, register for a Reddit account. The perfect username is one that includes one of your brand keywords and turns it into something lighthearted. For example, if you work for a candy company, try something like "TheRealWillyWonka." 

Customize Your Brand's Newsfeed

Find all subreddits that may be relevant to your brand, then subscribe and start exploring. After identifying your target audience, start subscribing to all the subreddits relevant to your brand. One of the easiest ways to do this is through Reddit's native subreddit search bar. There's even a subreddit you can use called r/FindaReddit!

Build Original Content

Don't merely recycle your brand's latest blog or Facebook post. Content should be original and created only for your target Reddit audience. Be consistent about your postings and be patient; if you only get a few comments and few upvotes, you're still heading in the right direction.

Be Consistent

Keep up with your Reddit activity and keep contributing to the community. Think of it like becoming a "regular" at a bar; keep showing up, posting, and talking with people. There's no magic answer to the amount of frequency and volume you should have on the site. Just remember that people respond to authenticity, so don't overthink it. Respond naturally to comments that you think will lead to valuable discussion. 

Remember: Using Reddit as a marketing platform is advanced organic marketing, so you need to tap into your primary research to figure out the best plan of attack for your chosen audience.

Reddit Ads

The beauty of Reddit is that its users actively curate the content they see on their homepages. By subscribing to different subreddits, they build their own personalized browsing experiences. Reddit's algorithm filters out anything unrelated to their users' subscriptions and keeps any content and advertisements that are connected. 

This makes Reddit advertisements a bit of a PPC gravy train: instead of making estimations at user interests, Redditors are openly sharing their activity. It's much easier for businesses to locate and target their key audiences. In a nutshell, Reddit ads provide cheap, low-funnel traffic with precise targeting. 

Reddit's ad revenue is much lower than other social networks, generating approximately $119 million in 2019 compared to Twitter's $885 million. This means you're able to buy cheaper ads with fewer competitors across the site. If you choose to run paid ads, you can choose to target users in individual subreddits or just the general interest category. 

For example, if you are in the business of selling home kitchen supplies, try targeting subreddits like r/recipes or r/cookingforbeginners. As a general rule of thumb, find subreddits with at least 5,000 subscribers and over 100 daily visits. 

pinterest

Pinterest

Pinterest is probably the most visual-centric out of the social networks we've explored in this blog. The platform is centered around creating "boards," which are collages of photos and links organized by topic. 

With over 335 million people using Pinterest every month, don't treat your brand's Pinterest boards as one-way advertising. Build a community by reaching out and interacting with your users, and eventually, they will become both fans and customers.

Pinterest has gained a reputation for being the home of aesthetes. These are people who take pride in the art and craftsmanship of products they buy and want to show them off. Pinterest users (called Pinners) often come to the website for design inspiration, whether they are planning parties, weddings, DIY projects, or holiday decorations. Their attitude is distinctly different from Reddit users: Pinners are open and amenable to branded content.

If you choose a Pinterest Business Account, you will gain access to Pinterest Analytics and other features, including a visual search tool, a native video player, and the ability to run Pinterest ads if you choose. Let's check out some tactics you can take to have a big impact on your followers.

pinterest graphic

Using Pinterest Boards to Leverage Visual Content

To take advantage of Pinterest Boards, learn to master Pins. Pins are what your followers and potential customers use to save the products they like. When your followers click on one of your Pins, they should be sent to your website, preferably a designated product page for that Pin.  

Of course, the only way to get people to click on your Pins is to have "Pin-worthy" images for what you're selling. 93% of Pinterest users say they use it when they are planning to make a large purchase. To convert these users to customers, you're going to want to become an expert at visual content marketing. Here are a few tips to get you going on your images:

  • If you're selling a product, don't just have whatever it is sitting there; show someone using and enjoying it. 
  • If you provide a service, in-person candid shots of your customers enjoying said service could make a big difference. Pins that show a product or service in action are 67% more likely to drive offline sales lift.
  • Be sure to take pictures in portrait mode rather than landscape. According to Pinterest, 85% of Pinners use their mobile app, so applying a 2:3 aspect ratio to all your photos ensures they show up correctly across mobile devices. 
  • Combining images and creative text can make a big difference. Strong call-to-actions and well-researched keywords will get people excited and clicking. For example, if you sell restaurant or bar supplies, you could create a photo detailing your "Drink of the Summer" recipe, served from one of your branded tumblers. 

Wrap-Up

Although determining your company’s social media course of action may seem daunting, you can avoid feeling overwhelmed by understanding social media marketing trends and using our guides as resources.

Maintaining your social media strategy takes a lot of work, but it pays off in the long run. With proper planning and consistency, you can engage, retain, and monetize your users for as long as possible.  

Ideally, it would be best if you had a team dedicated to social media. If you want more information, advice, and even some free consulting, be sure to check out Kensium's Digital Marketing services.