Social Media Growth In 2021
Improving organic growth is one of the most ambitious digital marketing objectives a business can have. This metric refers to the number of unique accounts that have viewed a piece of content on social media. What makes the game hard is that organic reach excludes the use of paid promotional tools.
Although social media growth can be notoriously difficult to achieve organically, an organic reach and sub-sequential growth may be achieved through creative, continuous and consistent marketing efforts.
If you were not certain about the need to engage in social media management, the events of the last year have shown us that traditional, non-digital marketing is not enough anymore. People now interact with businesses mostly online, and you will need to have a digital presence and be visible to prospects online if you want to convert them to paying customers.
Why Should I Use Social Media?
Social media has become the most important virtual space where people interact with not only friends and family, but also with brands and businesses. Social media marketing is currently the most effective way of communicating to potential customers not only because more than half of the world’s population is using social networks but also because it enables you to:
- reach a large number of people within seconds of posting an ad;
- connect with your audience at a personal level;
- potentially grow a large audience with a small budget;
- research your competitors;
- segment your audience into custom categories;
- increase your return on investment.
Current Social Media Algorithms
Social media algorithms determine different styles for each platform. There is a specific audience for each social network and the user experience is different across platforms, based on what the platforms believes that users want.
In other words, social media algorithms are a set of rules that social media platforms create and use in order to shape user experience.
There are different factors making up social media algorithms across different platforms, such as:
- Content from people you engage with;
- Posts with a high number of comments or long comments;
- Posts with a high number or a variety of reactions;
- Recent content from top friends;
- Engaging content from friends you connect with less frequently;
- Posts with a high number of likes;
- The most recent posts;
- Posts using hashtags that the user follows;
- Posts with large engagement even if the user does not follow the profile;
- Content from users you have engaged with in the past;
- Posts and content from personal profiles rather than business pages;
- Content with the highest amount of engagement from users you follow.
Having at least a basic understanding of the different social media algorithms out there will enable you to create and publish content that guarantees your organic social media growth.
Picking the Right Platform for You
So, how do you know what social media platform is the right platform for you?
Depending on what is required of it, each social platform tends to benefit different industries and business types:
The most widely-used social media platform. Facebook has led the development of social media ever since it was launched in 2004. When it comes to business promotion, Facebook is a must.
Not only did Facebook set the standard for social media marketing, by providing a variety of tools to businesses, but it is also used by the vast majority of potential customers of any company.
Top Tip: Create posts that encourage longer and more meaningful comments (not a simple “Looks Good”)
Instagram is considered most suitable for industries like auto, fashion, beauty, travel, and retail. Instagram is a must if your product is visual, if your audience is on Instagram, and if you have already found success with Facebook advertising (preferably). Instagram is the perfect platform for visual storytelling and product discovery. Thanks to filters you can make standard camera images pop and reels allow for longer videos that keep users engaged
Top Tip: Avoid posts with click-bait or competitions/giveaways – these don’t get recommended.
LinkedIn has been one of the hottest B2B social media trends and it is still popular and has a consolidated position, years after the initial hype. Mostly used by companies to recruit and hire top talent, LinkedIn can also be used to connect and sell. The best LinkedIn marketing tips include sharing posts with rich media, naming the audience you want to reach, posting at the right time, using the LinkedIn Live feature to engage with followers, and launching showcase pages.
Top Tip: Keep it consistent on Linked In! Once a week posting seems to be optimal – the algorithm will downgrade your content if you post randomly.
Twitter is recommended if you want to easily interact with audiences rather than promoting products and services. There are numerous perks to using Twitter for social media growth in 2021, such factors as it’s free to use, allows you expanded reach, gives opportunity for conversing with followers and it can be used as a search engine tool for people to find out about your business and also as a way for you to find out about your competitors and their marketing.
Top Tip: Ask questions and respond immediately to comments (within 2-3 hours of tweeting)
Snapchat is a good option if you are trying to engage a younger demographic. This platform is one of the 15 most used social networks in the world and allows users to interact more directly with brands. This unique platform is definitely not suited to all businesses so make sure it fits your target market. If you’re a business that wants to stand out and reveal a more playful side, it is time to set up a Snapchat Business account! Make sure you cross-promote to let people know your business is on Snapchat and use the ad metrics to further tweak campaigns when you are up and running.
Top Tip: Make use of targeting options with Snapchat Ads, targeting users on age, interests or similarities to Snapchatters currently engaging with your business.
Should your business be on TikTok? If you consider TikTok a social network for kids and teens only, you might be wrong. It is one of the fastest growing social networks in the world and it has even managed to catch adults during the long and boring lockdown last Autumn. The app now has a strong Generation Z and Millennial presence and the use of TikTok influencers can attract many potential customers in their 20s and 30s.
Top Tip: Choose relevant hashtags that align with your video theme/message in order to to boost your discoverability.
Both a visual search engine and a productivity tool, Pinterest helps people plan events, vacations, dinners, and many other life instances. In order to be successful on Pinterest, you need to provide helpful brand content. Being able to inspire people on Pinterest can significantly improve your brand exposure.
Top Tip: Incorporate relevant SEO key phrases in your pins and use high quality images.
YouTube is one of the oldest social networks attracting users from virtually any category and this makes it perfect for advertising and reaching audiences of all shapes and sizes. People prefer watching videos rather than reading, either to be entertained or to solve a problem. The primary advantage of YouTube is that you can start a video channel very easily. It is suited for longer video content, which can create massive engagement levels with a more targeted audience. Remember to encourage your viewers to like or subscribe within 1-2 minutes of the video playing in order to bump up your engagement.
Top Tip: Use your other social media channels to boost interest and engagement after you post your video on YouTube.
How to Create Quality Content and How Often to Post
Quality over quantity is and will be one of the most prominent social media trends.
The top creative ideas for growing a following include:
- Focusing your efforts on the right social network
You don’t have to (and actually probably shouldn’t) be on every social network to promote your business successfully; you should be on the platform where your audience is.
- Optimising your social media profiles
A complete and attractive business profile is part of every social network algorithm. Remember to include a recognisable, high quality photo photo, a keyword-rich company description, and a link to your website and other social media.
- Posting evergreen content
No matter how ‘boring’ your industry is, create posts that are educational and funny, and help people solve their problems; avoid short-lived content that becomes obsolete in a matter of weeks.
- Post regularly and moderately
Generally, two posts per day is considered sufficient for most businesses but this does depend on the platform being used.You will most likely find that posting too often is spammy and may persuade users to un-follow your page. Fewer posts which are of higher quality will benefit your organic growth a lot more.
- Use targeting where possible
Encouragingly, most platforms will allow you to tweak the settings of your posts to target specific members of your audience.
In conclusion, in order to achieve social media organic growth, it is essential to be creative and start conversations, be sure that you inform and give people what they want. Through creation of useful and consistent content you can ensure effective and sustainable social media growth. Unfortunately, not everybody has the skills, resources and/or time for to dedicate to this marketing method. Visual Marketing Australia can help with social media marketing along with a variety of other, related digital marketing services, such as content creation and SEO. Get in touch with our team today and let’s grow your business together!
With over 39 years’ experience in Print Media, Sales and Marketing, Online Services & Marketing plus Financial Service industries. John brings a wealth of knowledge to Visual Marketing Australia. As a Certified Google Partner, his Digital Marketing knowledge includes: Web Design & Development, SEO, Mobile App. Development, Online Marketing, Online Video Marketing and Email Marketing Solutions. With 10 years experience in using Zoho CRM it is a natural progression to become and Authorised Consulting Partner so we can now add Sales and Marketing Automation to the list.