“You have to know who exactly represents your target group”
Ensuring a strong ROI on their brand’s paid social is one of the top concerns for marketing teams of all sizes. But, with many teams working with limited time and resources, when it comes to making the most out of their brand’s paid – and organic – social, it all comes down to implementing and honing the best practices.
Social media ad spending increased an astonishing $5bn in 2018 to reach $15bn in the US alone, yet the average CTR rate hovers below a meagre 1%. I spoke with Magda Urbaniak, brand manager extraordinaire and Founder of brand agency MaxTractor.agency, about what she thinks the best practices for social media to help grow your brand are.
Knowing your goals is an obvious one, Magda notes, but it’s nonetheless one of the best pieces of advice she could give anyone hoping to nail their social media presence.
“You have to know who exactly represents your target group,” she advises. “Build personas. It can be one or two – though some companies have dozens of personas tailored to their business.
“Be aware of the problems and needs that the people you want to reach have,” she adds. “When you already know who you’re talking to, targeting your campaign is way easier. Social media platforms like Facebook Ads allow you to build a detailed group to target your campaign. My main tip here is that you need to know your potential customer and think like them. Many examples of outstanding paid promotions are down to the marketer knowing exactly why they created it and what problems they are addressing.”
When it comes to organically engaging with those personas on social media today, two-way communication rules, Magda says.
“The era when brands could just talk about themselves is over,” she states. “Today people want to feel they have an impact, not only on how companies run their communication but also how they run their business in general. Showing their audience that they have a real influence on what their product or service looks like is key. So listen to people, give them space to share their insights and implement user-generated content.
The best channel for marketing is highly contested, and a quick Google will bring up millions of results offering contradictory advice. I ask Magda to weigh in, and she says the best channel for you depends on what niche you’re aiming for as a company.
“[When deciding which channel to promote on] we need to take into consideration a couple of aspects: Where is the majority of our audience? Where is our competition active? What type of content we would like to create?
“Facebook is still the biggest platform, so you might want to focus on Facebook Ads, but if your company works in the beauty, fashion or travel industry, Instagram or Pinterest can be the most effective place for customer acquisition. And YouTube can work perfectly if you want to present your products in video form.”
The explosive growth of marketing channels over the last five years has presented numerous challenges for marketers, and, as Magda notes, “we’ve had to keep our finger on the pulse to know what channel is genuinely promising, and which is falling out of favour”.
“In the last five years Facebook has allowed us to stream live video, Instagram has grown like crazy, Snapchat was created, made buzz – then almost died while Tik Tok recently got 1.5 billion users across the globe.
“We now have far more ways of promoting and engaging with our community.”
“The era when brands could just talk about themselves is over”
She hopes that in the next five years, brands will become better at using social media, understanding that it’s a platform for being honest and open and actually talking to their customers.
“I think that Facebook will lose its monopoly and other platforms (YouTube, TikTok, maybe something new?) will have more and more to say,” she adds.
In terms of AI’s influence on the industry, Magda says “we already try to automate as much as we can. This process will keep developing over time, and AI will play a big role here.”
But adoption will be a problem, with many companies preferring the “old-fashioned” way of doing things or simply not believing in the technology, she predicts. “But come on… who knows?”