The world is on social media. Literally, more than half of the world’s population is on these “platforms to connect people”. After all, how do you get a laugh out of watching a video of a cat chasing a mouse with socks on? Or how do you learn about the trendy new gadget launched by some billion dollar tech company in some remote area of the world? On social media, of course!
With such outreach of social media, it is no surprise that businesses as well as individuals are leveraging every aspect of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter to make themselves heard. Facebook, for instance, is among the most used social media platforms with its 2.6 billion user base ranging from preteen kids using stories to update their friends about their best buy, to older individuals wanting to know what is happening around the world as they scroll down on their screens over a cup of tea.
Given that much of the world stays engaged with various social media platforms on a daily basis, businesses need to take advantage of a top-notch social media marketing strategy for growth and development. And in fact, marketers across the world swear by the influence that these popular platforms have and how they can reach their potential client just with a few clicks (and a carefully structured strategy devised around engaging content, of course). And with people searching for more and more relatable content on these platforms, one cannot deny how businesses can use PowerPoint presentations to spread the word about their brand and gain traction when it comes to online metrics.
While we have discussed in a previous blog about how PowerPoint can be used for generating amazing visual content, in this blog, we will share the components of an effective social media marketing strategy and how a PowerPoint presentation can be incorporated into it to accomplish one’s business goals. Read on and get ready to appease and engage your audience like a boss.
What is there in an effective social media marketing strategy?
By effective here we mean the tricks that marketing gurus employ to produce impressive results. Mostly, it is seen that many businesses just dive into the realm of social media without giving a thought about a particular strategy. This is not only counterproductive but also harms brand value of the business. If there is anything we can learn from targeted marketing campaigns, it is that your customers are something you need to understand with a plan. Guided efforts can lead to productive results. And productivity comes from careful execution of social media marketing strategy. The following are the key points to keep in mind while devising such a strategy.
#1 Know yourself
Before you want to take your business aboard the social media train, you must ask yourself, “What are we doing this for?” You must always know what you want to use Facebook or LinkedIn for. Are you a telecom company using Twitter for customer grievance redressal? Or are you connecting with people through Instagram stories as a fashion brand? Bottom line, what purpose are you serving as a business or an individual? Are you providing a product or a service? Or are you in it for posting viral contact for generating clicks and views? If you can find a definite answer to this, then you have a good chance of starting off in the right direction. If you don’t, then may be sit back a little and see what your brand can be the voice for. Social media marketing does well by you if you know your purpose well.
#2 Choose the right channel
Metrics like number of followers and likes are inconsequential as far as e-commerce and brand influence is concerned. Chasing these metrics, many companies just tend to be on every social media channel without knowing the purpose of that channel. As a result, the mission just gets lost in digits showing on a website profile bio. To overcome that, you have to choose the right social media channel to market your business. Here, the right channel is the one where you have your target audience. For example, if you are into a technology business providing networking solutions, a creative Instagram page full of stock technology pictures may not be the right channel to grow your brand. Instead, you can try LinkedIn, possibly the most diverse and well-connected platform for professionals and businesses alike. This instead rests on how well you know your target audience. Make sure you are not a marketer promoting solar roofs to people living in high-rainfall regions.
#3 Set quantifiable goals
Since we have a target to achieve, it is better to strategize for it as well. And strategy comes from setting realistic and quantifiable goals. What do you want to achieve with your social media marketing strategy?
Once you have answers to all these questions, just make sure you have a plan ready to devise content according to it. This will help you manage how the customers or users interact with your business and how you can get higher conversions using content that the users want to consume.
#4 Plan your content
Once you have gathered your prerequisites as explained above, you have to create content. And not some cliché videos and pictures. Actual, QUALITY content. For that, you must assess what your audience uses a particular social media channel for. If you have got that right, then you can find out the kind of content that will keep the audience engaged and lead to more conversions. You can try short videos to showcase a product or use creative images to evoke a certain type of emotion from the audience.
Remember, you have to think of the content from the perspective of the consumer in order for them to relate your brand. And you can do that by putting out quality content. This way, you will not seem like a money-making machine to the audience, but rather something that can make their life easy by solving a problem. Building trust through content makes a hell lot of sense as it will add to your brand’s credibility and relevance on topical subjects.
#5 Schedule and execute
Since you have set quantifiable goals for your social media marketing campaign, you have to keep your efforts time-bound. You must use a social media calendar and post content as per a schedule according to a particular frequency. The social media calendar can have identifiers like the type of channel, the mission statement for the channel, the type of content and the frequency of posting to achieve a particular result. The calendar will help you plan out the real deal in real-time.
#6 Do a competitor analysis
So, you have started by putting out relevant content regarding your brand. A few 30-odd posts to showcase your product or service and now on to the mainstream. But before you jump on the bandwagon, you must ensure that you have done a thorough check on your competitors. By that we mean you have the answer to these questions:
- What trending topic is your competitor talking about?
- What is the style and tone of the content being posted by your competitor?
- What can capture the attention of the audience in a similar fashion?
- Is your content going to be out-of-the-box, satirical, expressive or descriptive?
- What are the competitors doing right and what they are not?
- What channels have they not reached out to?
#7 Interact with the audience too
Sure your content is doing the talking for you and driving traffic to your website. But how are you connecting with the users on a personal and emotional level? Given that you have gained significant mass and velocity on social media channels, you must mix up your activity on them too. This will help you not seem like a robotic entity but an actual communication channel run by understanding humans. Try using various features of social media channels like asking questions through visual posts, seeking consumer feedback for your e-commerce business, running a poll and sharing the results, and hosting webcasts and livestreams. The basic idea is to let the users gather an emotional understanding of your brand while engaging with it in their own manner.
How to use a PowerPoint presentation to boost your social media marketing strategy
From the above discussion, one can see that much of the focus stays on how well you plan your content around your social media marketing dynamics. You need to find out the right fit and, of course, the right tool to produce that content. With PowerPoint, you get to cover the major component of all your marketing campaigns – VISUAL CONTENT. Courtesy of technology and Microsoft’s drive to enable people to do more with their products, the latest versions of PowerPoint are super-machines that can churn out great and appealing visual content that can fit nice and easy into your content creation verticals. Let’s dive right into how you can use your presentation to ace a social media marketing campaign like a boss.
#1 Upload to SlideShare
Having close to a 100 million unique visitors, SlideShare is the perfect platform to spread the word about your brand. If you have identified your target audience as the motley group of professionals, business and entrepreneurs, then uploading a PowerPoint presentation on SlideShare will do the trick. However, you must not go crazy with it. You have to grab the audience’s attention with something that they can use. It has to be something that solves their daily troubles. With a good PowerPoint presentation on SlideShare, you can influence the minds of your users and prospective customers. What’s more? The platform is absolutely free and has in fact launched some of the most awe-inspiring presentations out into the world. An example of a witty and engaging SlideShare is as follows:
Pro tip: We cannot stress this enough. On SlideShare, LESS IS MORE. In fact, since your audience who values time, you can apply the 10-20-30 rule, the basic formula of creating a good presentation of 10 slides, not more than 20 minutes long and with font not less than 30 points. The key here is to leverage the concept of minimalism to grab the attention of the audience. Sure you can find SlideShare uploads running in over 100 slides, but when it comes to social media marketing, you have to simply go with the rule of giving a problem statement and then a solution. You can use SlideShare for rolling out a new service or a product. And with integration of professional network, you will accomplish much more beyond your goals.
#2 Create and upload videos
When we speak of visual content on social media, one can definitely evaluate the impact YouTube, the video sharing platform, has on the world. In fact, it is among the topmost engaging social media platforms on the planet. Why? It’s because people love to watch interesting videos on the internet. Therefore, you can do something creative with what you have at your disposal. And PowerPoint makes it possible to create engaging content like short videos with voiceovers. After you have created a presentation, simply follow the action trail in the main menu as: Slideshow > Record slideshow > Start narration. A good example of a interesting video made in PowerPoint is the company video that we have:
Pro tip: For your social media marketing goals, you must go for videos not less than a minute and a half, although shorter videos won’t hurt. The reason for that is you may want to understand how short a span you get to grab the user’s attention. How do you appeal to a millennial wishing to watch a fun video that not only entertains him, but also informs him about your brand? With PowerPoint presentation video, you will have less than a minute to get the user engaged with the content. So make sure you make it right. For YouTube, you may choose to create instructional and how-to videos of longer duration.
#3 Make and upload infographics
According to a report by Content Marketing Institute, infographics have seen as much as 65% increase in usage among B2B marketers in the past four years. The basic reason for that is that human mind tends to retain visual information better than pages and pages of text. And since infographics summarize complex information into decipherable visuals, as a social media marketer you must go for making infographics in PowerPoint and sharing them on social media platforms.
Pro tip: Keep it minimal and according to the platform. The catch is that you have to hold the audience focus on their screen in a virtual fight against the scrolling tendencies. So make sure you set a particular size for your infographic that will grab the most eyeballs on the screen — square for Instagram and Pinterest posts, rectangular for LinkedIn and Facebook. If there is too much information to be displayed then you can use carousel feature for each fact that you want to present in your infographic. It will lead to better engagement.
#4 Create and upload stunning pictures
Images that speak for themselves are the ones to have on your social media account. Factually speaking, Facebook posts with images led to 3x more engagement than those that didn’t have any images. And if you were under the impression that creating and editing stunning images in PowerPoint is tricky, then this post will make you believe otherwise. From social media marketing standpoint, using PowerPoint to make attractive visuals makes it easy for you to be precise in devising content for your strategy. You can simply export these images after editing them in various sizes for social media posts and achieve your targets.
Pro tip: Often there is a rookie mistake that budding marketers do. They just pick out a relevant stock photo and post it along with a caption. But since the trick to visual content marketing is grabbing the attention of the user, you must consider putting a tagline onto the picture and make it a good banner of sorts. You can also use multiple pictures to tell a story along with your blog post. Bottom line; jazz it up.
#5 Use presentation in webcasts
This one is specifically for those wanting to connect with their social media audience through an online workshop or webinar. While the world still twists and turns out of the constant battering by the coronavirus, internet technologies and social media have become all the more relevant. The best way to employ brand communication in social media marketing is by including content or opportunities that give people something to learn. And with livestreams and remote meetings and events the new normal, one can use a PowerPoint presentation about their products in live webinars. The link for joining these webinars along with a catchy image can be included in your social media posts. This move is also applicable when you have gained enough brand presence and engagement metrics.
Pro tip: Make sure you keep your online interaction as entertaining as you can. Those interested will utilize the opportunity to learn through your social media channels. When using a PowerPoint presentation to educate people remotely (with Google Slides, for instance), make sure you use effective storytelling to put forward your point. Short and sweet is a good deal that will make the audience coming back for more. Also make sure you put the link to the online presentation in your bio, enabling diverse channels of interaction with your brand. The key is to give the audience a reason to grow using your brand.
Take note though…
You have got your visual content sorted through PowerPoint. You have got your social media marketing strategy in place. Now it is time to execute it in style. While brands across the globe have been utilizing social media extensively for promotion, some have made quite a personal connect with the audience. Such brand value has seeped into their marketing campaigns and made them a household name. But before you take the virtual launch pad for magnetizing people from their phone screens to your online store via social media, make sure you have the following dos and don’ts in check:
- Save templates for each type of social media post design in PowerPoint.
- Make sure you keep space for logos or brand colors on the slides.
- Proofread the content before your click “POST”.
- Be consistent about your brand visuals and colors.
- Keep content posting regular, but calculated, as per the social media platform.
- Catchy captions also have to be according to the platform. Funny emojis may not be the best choice on LinkedIn, for instance.
- Keep track of user engagement to plan tweaks in your marketing plan. Using analytics tools will do the trick.
- Build a rapport with the community by interacting with their social media handles.
- Mix up the content as per your brand value: How much will be informative and how much will be entertaining?
- Use influencers to market your products to the target audience. They will get the word out and the return on investment (ROI) will be as significant as paid advertisements.
- Do not overdo anything, be it posting or commenting or using hashtags.
- You do not have to be on every social media platform. Just choose the one where you can perform well with the target audience
- Do not simply focus on number of followers and views as far as e-commerce is concerned. Go for metrics such as conversion rates, ROI (return on investment) and on-site engagement to track how you are doing.
- Do not post click bait content. Modern consumer is smart enough to see through these tactics.
It’s a wrap
An effective social media marketing strategy depends how catchy content can fetch you better metrics. And since visual content is something you can churn out with remarkable quality in PowerPoint, using a PowerPoint presentation can keep you in the front of the competition as a perfect social media strategist. And since the numbers for social media are only bound to grow, so is the utility of PowerPoint for creating stunning visuals for social media posts. After all, if it catches the eye, it influences the mind. All social media marketers have to do is stay on top of things with an effective content-driven strategy, and, of course, the next viral dog video that millennials will share on their Instagram a billion times.