“Social media creates communities not markets.”Don Schultz
Eight weeks ago I started my social media marketing class. As somebody who uses social media daily and has multiple platforms, both for business and personal use, I was definitely intrigued in what I was going to learn. But despite reading the curriculum and knowing the basis of what the social media marketing class was about, I didn’t realize how in-depth we were going to go and just how much I would learn. When looking back there were three main lessons that I learned from this class. One communication is key, two make sure your goals are SMART, and three listen to your target audience.
Communication is Key!
One of the first things that really stuck out to me in the social media marketing class was how communication defines not only how your marketing goes but your business in general. Whether it be communication with coworkers with your superiors or with your customers, being able to communicate and end up on the same page is essential to understanding how to market to your target audience. When it comes to social media marketing there are eight steps to ensure proper communication. 1.search strategic objectives 2.strategic plan 3.inflammation plan 4.establish policies 5.set key responsibilities/allocate resources 6.compile calendars/set timelines 7.evaluate progress, and 8.adjust strategies. Each step goes into a in-depth description of what should be communicated and planned when marketing. I obviously knew that you had to be able to communicate well especially when it comes to business and marketing, but before this class I did not realize how in-depth you need to communicate with your team, your management and your customers. It’s more than just making a plan and talking about the basics. You have to be able to discuss the basics like who, what, when, where, etc. but also be able to take all of those aspects and dig deeper and establish things like marketing policies, set timelines and constantly evaluate your progress.
What are SMART goals? SMART goals stand for: significant, measurable, actionable, realistic, and time-based goals. Before taking the social media marketing class I had heard about SMART goals from my other business classes, but I had never really used them until conducting my final project and it really made me step back and think deeper about the goals I had set for the business I have chosen for my final project. When doing pretty much anything ,whether it’s subconsciously or you’re actively doing it, you make a goal. Whether that is to finish a paper by a certain time, or in the case of the social media marketing final project, increase businesses’ social media engagement rate. Goals can vary from difficulty but being able to step back and look at whether your goal is specific or if it’s realistic are not only essential to better understand that your goal is but it’s essential to helping you complete said goal and completing it well. When using SMART goals while conducting social media marketing I think it not only helps you decide what goals to implement but allows you to complete those goals with efficiency and set up new goals for the future, which set you up for success.
Listen to Your Target Audience
The last major lesson I learned from the social media marketing class is you need to listen to your target audience. When it comes to marketing and businesses in general if you don’t understand who you’re targeting whether it be a service or product, you won’t get very far. When looking at your target audience you need to look at an array of things. Factors like age, gender, ethnicity, social class, etc. are important just like what are your key competitors and what are customers saying about your product/service online. Besides looking at who your target audience is, listening to feedback from your target audience is also key to marketing.Feedback isn’t always negative even if what your customers are saying is technically negative. All feedback can be influential to your business and how you market things in the future. If you get complaints about how your product works it allows you the opportunity to change it in the future just like if you get positive feedback about how easily accessible a product is then you know that your target audience is satisfied with that portion of your product.
In conclusion, when evaluating all that I’ve learned in my social media marketing class, nothing stands out to me more than communication, SMART goals, and listening. And when first hearing these they seem like basic knowledge, things that are obvious when it comes to marketing and business but they really are the foundation of being able to connect your business to your target audience and build that relationship/loyalty. I definitely enjoyed this class and learned valuable information that I will use often in my career. And to my fellow classmates, my question to you is how did this class make a difference in how you view social media marketing, because for me it opened up my eyes to see that marketing on social media is more than just posting a picture, it’s about understanding, making that connection and keeping it.
“21 Secrets to Social Media Marketing for Small Business.” Digital Marketing Consultant | Website Design In Marietta GA, 3 Jan. 2021, https://www.yourmarketinglady.com/social-media-marketing-for-small-business/.
“6 Creative Social Media Marketing Ideas to Grow Your Business.” Techfunnel, 15 May 2020, https://www.techfunnel.com/martech/6-creative-social-media-marketing-ideas/.