Social Media Tools for Successful Marketing in 2023
The Digital Tech Era has completely transformed the ways of our lives. From wired to wireless communication, the turnaround has been rapid in terms of technological advancements forever changing the nature of human interactions.
Particularly the advent of Social Media has been hailed as the Great Equalizer, as people from almost all walks of life have been able to interact with each other and use the platform to voice their opinions, express themselves, and reach out to the remotest corners of the world.
So what does this mean for marketing and advertising particularly in the era of Social Media? Well, this means the opening up of a whole new dimension for the businesses to interact with their prospective buyers and market their products or services.
Therefore in this article, we are going to briefly talk about Social Media Marketing, and then we are going to learn about various tools that are available for leveraging Social Media for successful marketing practices in a detailed manner.
What is Social Media Marketing?
It is a type of marketing that involves using social networking platforms and websites to endorse or promote a business it can be any good or service. while the terms e-marketing and digital marketing are still dominant in business academia it is social media marketing is becoming more popular with the overall process that is involved refers to advertising through digital media channels such as search engines, social networking sites, etc.
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Why Social Media Marketing?
The impetus that this kind of marketing has is mainly due to two elements(and there are always other factors too) :
a) Social media
b) Mobile phones
a) Social media
Social networking websites have opened up avenues that allow individuals, business entities, and other organizations to have interactions with one another and build relationships and communities online. When the companies (either big or small organizations) join these digital social channels, consumers can directly with these companies. The nature of interactions although microcosmic at the individual level is still very intimate and sophisticated than the traditional methods of Outbound Marketing and advertising.
These sites can be a mine of information that can be used to get insights into consumer perspectives. Blogging sites and other similar forums of content communities have individuals posting their reviews or recommendations of products and services that give us an overall sense of brand reception and recognition in the market. In a nutshell, (Social media) is a relatively inexpensive source of market intelligence that can be tapped by business stakeholders to identify what consumers ultimately expect from the companies.
Through Social Media sites, businesses have a direct line of communication with individual followers.
“This personal interaction can instill a feeling of loyalty into followers and potential customers.”
Moreover, these platforms also act as word of mouth(which can be comments or reviews) and more aptly can be termed as e – word of mouth.
And finally, unlike the conventional market research methods such as surveys, focus groups, and data mining which is time-consuming and expensive and take weeks or months to analyze to form a decision, marketers can simply tap into social media to obtain real-time or live information about consumer behavior and company’s brand value among them. This is helpful in a highly dynamic, complex, competitive fast-paced global marketplace.
Some essential social media marketing statistics for gaining a perspective :
● According to Statista, the leading provider of consumer and market data, over 3 billion people across the globe use social media, which’s nearly 50% of humanity.
● Digital market research expert Emarketer in its analysis found that in 2019 90% of Millennials, 77.5% of Generation X, were active social media users.
● Another leading tech market research firm GlobalWebIndex in its survey found out that each person spends an average of 2 hours and 22 minutes on social networks and messaging per day and 54% of social browsers use social media to research products.
● And the World Economic Forum also reveals something similar that the millennials are on social media for an average of two hours and 38 minutes daily, while Gen Z scrolls for two hours and 55 minutes.
● According to the Sprout Social 2019 Index, 83% of surveyed consumers used the platform, 66% say they Like or Follow a brand on the platform, and while 89% of marketers use Facebook in their brand marketing efforts.
● In a Mediakix survey, Instagram continues to dominate influencer marketing with 89% of marketers say that it’s the most important social media platform for influencer marketing.
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b) Mobile phones
Nearly two-thirds of the world population using mobile devices, with smartphones accounting for roughly three-quarters of all the mobile handsets in use today. It’s fair to say mobile phones have become an integral part of our lives.
Mobile phone usage is advantageous for Social Media Marketing because of their web browsing capabilities which allow individuals immediate access to social networking sites. These devices have altered the path-to-purchase process by allowing consumers to easily obtain pricing and product information in real-time.
These gadgets have also allowed businesses to constantly remind and consistently update their followers. Mobile phones have also changed the way consumers interact with media and have many implications for advertising, TV ratings, mobile commerce, and more. Smartphones have enabled advertisers to reach out to their target audience anytime.
Few Statistics about Mobile devices surge around the globe( keep in mind these are potential prospective customers for Social Media Marketers) :
● According to Statista in 2019, a total of 1.52 billion smartphone units were sold with China, Asia Pacific, and North America have been the largest smartphone market since 2018.
● According to YouTube, 70% of its traffic is coming from mobile phones.
● Nearly 70% of total media time is spent on smartphones. (Source: eMarketer)
● The average web user checks their phone 58 times a day. (Source: VOX)
● Nearly 56% of all website traffic in the world was generated through mobile phones. (Source: Digital 2019)
● Nearly 75% of smartphone owners turn to search first to address their immediate needs. (Source: Think With Google)
What are Social Media Management Tools? (or Social Media tools for marketing)
We have understood how platforms like Facebook, Instagram, etc are used by businesses and marketers to endorse their brands. But businesses and marketers are overwhelmed with various tasks as there are a lot of moving parts for them to consider like creating content, editing, publishing, analytics, and reporting. So in a highly competitive market, where time is a constraint, having a set of handy tools at your calling can be very helpful, that is a Social Media management tool. And they can be described as a suite of software tools that are created to manage, analyzing online social interactions helping brands to get real-time data and all the other information that is going to help them to manage their presence in the market.
Why does using Social Media tools make sense?
There are so many different Social Networking sites available on the internet, it becomes hard for businesses(or brands) to manage their visibility( that is brand awareness). Posting the content, sharing the articles, and tracking engagement metrics across all these sites can become a tedious task, so these social media management tools can be a lifesaver as they help organize tasks such as scheduling posting of content at designated time and day. The streamlining of the processes means we can achieve maximum efficiency as businesses can concentrate on other essential tasks.
These tools update the posts when the maximum number of users are active on their social media accounts ( kind of hitting the sweet spot for posting the content except users need not worry about it, as the software(tool) does this job consistently). These benefits along with the data and the consequent inputs gathered from the engagement metrics can make a difference to the social presence of companies giving them the edge in terms of marketing.
List of Social Media marketing tools :
There are a lot of Social media management tools available on the internet and choosing the appropriate tool can give you an upper hand over your rivals. These tools can be categorized based on their functionality, price, etc. The companies can choose the tools according to their requirements and budget constraints. So let’s dig in and take a look at them.
Analytics Tools :
These tools analyze the web performance of brands’ social media profiles. Parameters that quantify performance include the efficacy of engagement campaigns to understand the resonance of brands’ messages with the customers. This gives you an idea for an aligned social media strategy. Some of the Social media analytics tools that you can use are as follows :
Facebook Analytics :
Facebook analytics as claimed by the company is powered by the insights from its strong 2 billion user community. FB analytics gives you everything from people’s stage of interaction with your brand to the conversion action across your page, website, etc.
You can also accurately keep track or measure peoples’ retention concerning brand interaction over time.
Twitter Analytics :
This free tool has cool features such as Twitter cards that help drive clicks, app installs, and retweets. Other benefits of using Twitter analytics include knowing about the interests, location, and demographics of followers, and measuring engagement activity, and learn how to make your tweets more successful.
This exclusively Twitter-linked tool has very intricate features to give an in-depth picture of the brand’s profile on the popular microblogging site. You can find influencers to optimize your brands’ profiles.
If Twitter is your main Social Media strategy you have to give it a try.
Scheduling Tools :
These tools have just one motto; to save time. Earlier we discussed how managing social profiles across different platforms can be tedious and time-consuming. So these applications make your life a little easy as they can do things from posting content across multiple social platforms at one go and other brilliant features that can boost your productivity.
Sprout Social emphasizes that they have a variety of organizations as their clients from small businesses to enterprise companies as evidence of their expertise in providing social media solutions. And they might be what they say they are as they offer some very good features like an Interactive calendar, custom hashtags and they also provide media analytics. Their patented viral post technology gives optimal time to post content for guaranteed maximum engagement.
One of the best work management software CoSchedule gives importance to organizing all of the marketing needs of an individual and or the marketing teams in a single place. Features like seamless integration of companies’ blogs via WordPress mean that you can publish content with ease across different social platforms.
A social media dashboard application for managing Twitter accounts, which has features such as customizable columns that displays the timeline, mentions, direct messages, lists, trends, favorites, search results, hashtags, etc. The tweets can be sent immediately or queued up like in a deck scheduled for later delivery, users can also monitor multiple Twitter accounts.
Engagement tools :
These software applications form the core of any brands’ interaction with its target audience. Having an organic engagement with customers is the best way to build a brand’s social profile visibility. This is easier said than done as businesses have to deal with a lot of queries from thousands of customers who interact either through comments or direct messages to your profiles’ inbox. So following are a few Social media engagement tools that can come in handy to resolve the said issues.
Hootsuite optimizes the delivery of efficient, personalized customer service through social media. You can also monitor trends, posts, performances, etc across profiles also you can respond to queries, share items with teammates in a single click.
This Artificial Intelligence enabled application will help you discover various marketing personas, their content diet, etc. There are tons of other cool features but most of them can be activated if you purchase a good plan and it can be a little expensive, nevertheless they are one of the best when it comes to engagement tools on the web.
Zoho Social :
With this application, you can stay on top of all things social as you can track social engagement by notifications with the real-time stream of updates from your target audience across all the social media channels that you manage. There is a dedicated space for Direct Messages from your audience on Facebook and Twitter in a single, elegant chat-style interface. There is a provision of a contact directory for your brand that allows you to view and manage connections across all your social channels. So don’t forget to give this one a try.
Monitoring tools :
The terms Social Media Monitoring tools, Listening tools, and Tracking tools are often used interchangeably while monitoring or tracking is the same functionality the Listening or Social Listening is an entirely different social media strategy. Social Listening encompasses the collection of data from Social mentions, audience conversations to get insights that are used to arrive at a better social media strategy. On a broader scale, it takes a look at how customers interact (either through comments or mentions) with your brand on social media at a macro-level. While Social monitoring addresses customers on a micro-scale by responding to their queries and other issues. With that distinction addressed let us take a look at few monitoring tools.
Falcon. io :
The Social media monitoring software Falcon.io is a unified Social Media and Customer Experience management platform. From medium to enterprise-sized companies, Falcon addresses social media needs related to scheduling, engaging, publishing, advertising, and analyzing all aspects of your social media strategy. With the Engage inbox feature that is compatible with WhatsApp, you can manage private messaging channels.
With Buffer, you get in-depth valuable insights to grow your brand profile on social media and measure social media performance, create visually appealing reports, and get unique recommendations to grow brands’ reach, engagement, and sales. Conversation with your audience is seamless as you can post content and engage directly in the replies from one centralized dashboard through a team-shared inbox.
BuzzSumo enables you to monitor your competitors, brand mentions, and industry updates. Receive timely alerts that ensure you catch important updates, trends, etc. The application also shows the number of likes and shares certain posts have and makes it easy to analyze your success on Facebook. Helps you identify which types of posts accomplish the best results on the platform, which days and times of the week you should post, and what the ideal post length should be.
Automation tools :
Social media automation tools or simply automation tools are software tools used to execute specific tasks on social networking sites without human intervention. The function can be as simple as posting or sharing content and other repetitive tasks, without taking away humane experience.
Although automation is helpful with regards to saving time, the overall strategy should be one of not depending heavily on it. Now let us take a look at a few automation tools.
Chatfuel is the largest bot-building platform on the internet. And you can use this cool piece of application to automate your Facebook page message inbox on messenger, create a bot for marketing, sales, support, etc by using their visual ‘drag-and-drop interface. Recommended highly for brands looking to build a bot for customer support to keep up with their growing customer base.
Add all your social media accounts, post all your updates(without ever worrying about running out of limits), as this awesome tool automates the process of scheduling content across various social media accounts. You can also learn about your followers and determine the type of content they care about and choose when to post it.
Try Socialpilots’ free trial period, and later choose plans according to your requirements as they do offer some cost-effective plans compared to the other tools available on the web.
An acronym that on expansion stands for “If this, then that,” is a web application that lets you customize how different tools, apps, and social media platforms communicate with one another. The options that this tool offers are truly unique and they also have a new IFTTT pro that should appeal to your creative side. Check out their website (as I might be here all day if I go on about their features) you will love it.
Other tools :
So let’s check out other tools(I don’t want confusion with all the classification of tools, above mentioned categories should suffice) that will aid your social media strategy.
Kicksta exclusively deals with Instagram growth service which is purely organic that is real Instagram followers no spam, no fake followers, no bots. There is always a factor of risk that should be kept in mind if you decide to buy followers or likes, as you will be spammed, and ruining your money as IG deletes accounts that display suspicious activities, sometimes you might end up getting banned or flagged. If Instagram forms a key social strategy of your brand then you should check out Kicksta.
Canva is a simple, easy-to-use graphic design platform that helps you create customized social media graphics, posters, and other visual content.
They have ready-to-use templates, everything from Facebook banners to Instagram stories can be found here so you don’t start from scratch. You can use this tool for designing on-brand graphics for your company’s social media account.
HypeAuditor claims to be an Industry Standard Analytical Platform for authentic and fraud-free influencer marketing. Fake followers on social platforms make your online engagement look bad affecting your growth. This tool helps you weed out fake followers and achieve the true potential of your brands’ social presence. HypeAuditor does this by using Artificial Intelligence which analyzes your audience to detect where they live, their age and gender, and which of your followers are ghost accounts.
To sum up, there are plenty of Social media tools on the web but keep in your mind your social goals before you choose them. All the best.