Social media marketing is a relatively new way to reach out to customers. And, social media platforms are popping up and gaining popularity all the time. Anyone who has been around long enough to remember MySpace, or wonder what Snapchat is all about, will know exactly what I’m talking about.

In the midst of all this change and evolution, it’s difficult to pin down any firm rules of social media marketing. However, that’s not to say there aren’t any firm guidelines for business owners to follow. In my experience, there are three principles you should always bear in mind and stick to whenever possible. Even though the sites and tactics might change, these underlying ideas seem to be constant.

Here are my almost unbreakable three social media marketing rules…

#1 Know Your Medium

People use different social media sites in different ways. For instance, pictures grab the most interest and attention on Facebook and Twitter, but LinkedIn is more skewed towards text and YouTube is obviously run on video. Additionally, each has its own distinct audience with unique demographics.

You should be careful to post material that matches both the market you want to reach and the platform you are using. In other words, promote your company in a way that buyers expect to see on the social media site they happen to be using at the moment. You’ll get a bigger response and more engagement, which is the key to long-term success.

#2 Play the Long Game

The key phrase in the first point I made was “long-term success.” In social media marketing, very few things happen quickly. That’s because people go online to be entertained, not to search for products and services.

Knowing that, you should make your social messaging more about your brand than about an instant transaction. Lots of people might like your post and decide to check out your company, for instance. However, very few will click on a straightforward ad and buy anything right away. Naturally, there are impulse purchase campaigns that stand out as exceptions, but in general you’ll be better off taking a long-term approach with social media marketing.

#3 Watch Your Metrics

It’s important to keep an eye on your web analytics with any form of online marketing, but it’s particularly critical with social media for two reasons.

The first is that social media marketing tends to be time intensive. If you aren’t getting the kind of response or results you expected, you want to change your approach relatively quickly. The second has to do with the fact that social networking sites are always rising and falling. It might be tempting to promote your business through your favorite site, but you should watch your numbers to determine whether that’s actually a wise course of action as time goes on.

Social media marketing can be a lot of fun, when compared to more traditional activities like search engine optimization and pay-per-click advertising, but it also takes a lot longer to get going. And, you have to keep a close eye on your web metrics. Otherwise, you could find yourself devoting a lot of time to campaigns that aren’t going to pay off.

If you feel like you could use some help integrating social media into your existing marketing campaigns – or just want to get buyers coming to your website – it’s time to talk to the Biondo Creative team. Call or email us today to schedule a free consultation!