Most small businesses are lost in the sea of social media. To make your business stand out you have to be creative, unique and take a lot of risks (which your boss might object to at first). Social media has become much more demanding of small businesses, disregarding the generic social media strategy. To really make it online, you need to create an innovative social media campaign.
The most successful campaigns don’t replicate what their competitors are doing. They pick an original idea and build it into a campaign that will gain them huge social media recognition. This kind of credit is invaluable when you’re trying to build a recognisable brand.
Here are the steps you can take to create a successful social media campaign.
You’re not going to make headlines by sticking to the norm, so push your campaign that bit further wherever you can.
Whether you want to offer a bigger prize, or you ask something more from your customers in return, the more you think outside the box the more people your campaign will reach.
Remember to keep your head, as not all social media campaigns that push boundaries are popular. McDonald’s social media campaign encouraged its customers to take a trip down memory lane with the hashtag #McDStories. Instead of creating a nostalgic view of McDonalds over the years, the page was filled with horror stories from traumatised customers.
The takeaway? Think about what you’re publishing and all possible negative connotations it could have before you hit send.
Rather than going through what your product can do for the customer, think a bit bigger.
No company made history by showing the customer what they sell and telling them they have to buy it. But, companies did make history when they discovered that they should care about the same things that their customers care about.
Think about the bigger picture when you’re creating your social media campaign, and your followers will thank you for it.
Check Out the Competition
Although you don’t want to copy the competition, it doesn’t mean you should ignore them completely. It’s a good idea to keep an eye open and follow your competition on Twitter so you can spy on how much they post, how much they interact and who they interact with.
You shouldn’t take the competitor’s word as golden – they’re still figuring this out as much as you – but it will be helpful to see which posts of theirs do better.
When planning your social media campaign, timing is essential. Not only should you take into account the time difference between your British and American audiences, but many people fail to consider real time events that may incur.
For example, when British Gas opened their #AskBG Twitter Q&A session after a price hike, they didn’t consider that their customers might be a little bit upset. The result was not the helpful Q&A the energy provider were hoping for, as they were inundated with tweets like “#AskBG My office has a window where the sun comes in and makes the side of my head really hot. How much do I owe you?”
Don’t do what British Gas did; consider when your customers (and the general public) might be sensitive about an issue, and don’t try to use it as a marketing technique.
Pick a Prize
What you offer to the audience will determine the reach of your campaign. Whether it is advice, money or a trip, make sure you’re offering something valuable.
Air Asia did wonders for their social media campaign when a free plane was on the cards. The Malaysian airline offered to take you and 300 friends on a free trip from Australia to Malaysia. All customers had to do was tag their friends in the plane seating plan.
The campaign boosted the airline’s Facebook fan base as well as doubling the amount of flights and generating PR worth an estimated $1.5 million.
While you might not have a plane to giveaway, think about the best and most imaginative thing you can offer your customers – the return will be worth it!
Once you’ve chosen what your campaign is and how and when you’re going to execute it, you need to choose a suitable platform (if you haven’t already). Depending on your audience and who you’re trying to target, the platform might be different for each campaign.
For Q&As, Twitter is unbeatable, while for visual campaigns either Pinterest or Facebook are preferable. Don’t forget to keep an eye out on up and coming social media platforms, they might be more suited to your campaign than any other.
Have you had a successful social media campaign? Or do you want to create one? Get in touch by leaving a comment in the section below!