Are you planning to improve your social media marketing strategies?

Do you feel curious about what tactic works for large firms?

To make the matter worse, you get aggravated when big brands dominate all the page results on Google and other search engines. These guys are tough to outrank unless you have certain social media marketing tactics up your sleeve.

Just check out the infographic Social Media 101 – How To Turn Your Small Business Into A Huge Enterprise of iDigic. It defines how one can create a presence for their brand on all social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, Google+, and others for a lifetime

What Big Brands Do
For adding steps to your repertoire, you have to check out what famous brands with high amount of engagement are doing. The following are some of them –

1. Create Branded Communities

In January 2015, Facebook announced that users will see less promotional content and posts on their news feed. Forrester Research addressed this issue and provided a solution stating that brands can create alternative communities on their own website.
Create Branded Communities
By creating such alternative communities on-site, businesses can ensure that followers will not go anywhere else. Basically, this is an effective means to engage while keeping control on what followers view.

2. Assessing Your Approach

Sometimes what works for a particular brand might not work for another. This means it is necessary to do a consistent evaluation of your social media plan and even tweak it.  For example, on Facebook, top ten brands posted 35 updates over two weeks. Fascinatingly, iTunes posted about 61 updates and got less percentage of fan growth (.04%), while Subway posted 9 updates and developed their fan base (.10%).
Assessing Your Approach
There are various contributing factors why there is such a difference. The major reason is that Subway got 192 queries and it responded to 61% of them while iTunes had 32 queries and responded to none of them.

3. Satisfying The Follower’s Request

Customers depend on social media for product and website support. You need to keep track of your Facebook fan page and Twitter notifications, so that you can make the response time to minimum.  For example, on an average, you need to respond to questions in less than an hour.

4. Covering Facebook Ads With Dark Posts

Often we are quite used to hearing the significance of having a social media presence. So, when we hear for the first time the idea of a dark Facebook post, it might sound like an oxymoron. But various brands discover success only when they publish a post which does not hit the fans’ news feed until it gets converted to an ad. Plus, it is a great way to run the A/B test just before being more widespread with a specific public post.

As an uncanny marketing strategy, Walmart posted their Black Friday ad as a dark post. They got 8,250 interactions (i.e. 3,733 likes, 781 comments, and 3,736 shares). This ad directed followers to the Black Friday discounts from various departments and showed the list of stores which are in the close proximity of the user.
Covering Facebook Ads With Dark Posts
Around the same time, they posted another ad which appeared in the news feed. Through this they promoted electronic goods to target customers having specific interests. The end result was that they got a huge amount of engagement from their dark post.

Sometimes testing an ad with a dark post might provide more bang for your Facebook ad buck. Just try it.

5. Influencing Followers’ Friends On Twitter

Any type of discount or deal a follower shares with a friend is the best means to extend one’s reach. Do you know that to get friends of their followers on board, Starbucks provides offers to them too? In their holiday drink promotion, followers can bring a friend for free holiday drinks.  Such offers which extend into the follower’s personal networks are the best means to maintain new customers and existing ones too.
Influencing Followers

6. Take Part In Relevant Public Conversations

Certain times, it can be tough for brands to take a stand on issues without worrying about the consequences especially about how it can alienate the customers. If you are an online firm and your position has to do something with the Internet, then it might not be risky.

Recently, Etsy tweeted a message regarding Net Neutrality, where it thanked President Obama. It linked the tweet to the whitehouse.gov page and this was an effective means to communicate without restating a lot of information.
Relevant Public Conversations
By linking to the whitehouse.gov page, they provided an option to their fans to watch the entire YouTube video where President Obama explained his plan about Net Neutrality. Fans could even read the transcript of his message. Frankly, replying to the conversations which are relevant for your firm or industry will not make your customers feel uncomfortable.

7. Launching New Products

Now if you have something new for promotion, the first and best audience is on social media. Buffalo Wild Wings posted a photo and update on Facebook regarding their new potato offering called Wilder Wedges. Also they shared this information on Yelp and Twitter which gave huge interest and product enthusiasm. The best part of using social media is that it provides various creative means of introducing latest products and services to followers and fans.

8. Reducing Negative Feedbacks

When online firms post on their social network, they expose themselves to negative and positive feedback. You need to respond to customer’s concerns in timely manner and try to minimize any kind of negative buzz regarding your brand.

When mplSubway posted an update regarding their Sie $6 Menu, they got both negative and positive feedbacks. A customer complained about the bread being too dry. Immediately Subway responded to it and directed the customer to the contact page of its website.

Subway requested the customer to share the details and location, so that it could contact the owner and fix the problem. It made sure that the customer returned to their restaurant and forgot the bitter experience.

9. Direct Users To Landing Pages

The landing page is the best destination for your audience, irrespective of whether it is one of your social websites, your home page and a place to buy your products. You can use your social media platforms as hubs for the links you want to share with audiences.

On the YouTube page of LeanSecrets, they have the URL for their website, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram page. Now when Guitar Center posted a video clip of the musician Slash, they linked it to iTunes where users can purchase his album Word on Fire. Landing pages are one of the core aspects of a brand’s marketing tactics. They provide opportunities to lead individuals to pages which they want to view.

10. Short Branded URL

Nowadays, shortened URLs have become a norm. You can take it a step further by creating a branded URL (which uses the part of your domain). Such domains will be easy for the user to remember and it will give valuable tracking information. Short domain names have to be 15 characters or fewer (it includes the dot).  You can use tools like 101 domain and Domainr to search and create short domain name URLs.
Short Branded Url
Short URLs are quite advantageous on limited character platforms like Twitter. You can brand them to add certain name recognition to the shorten space.

11. Pay Attention To The Best Time For Tweeting

There is no hard and fast rule regarding the best time or day to send a tweet. Various trial and error methods are involved in designing a Twitter page. You can review your Twitter activity, check out what provides the most engagements for your brand and plan the tweet as per it.

12. Asking Questions On Facebook

Do you know questions are great conversation starters? They even serve as a market research. You can tie a picture or post into a question regarding a holiday, event or the trending topic with a hashtag. You engagement will skyrocket.

Subway asked its followers on why they like sandwiches using the hashtag #NationalSandwichDay. The post got 3,350 comments and about 107,367 interactions.

13. Spending Time Interacting on Twitter

Having a presence on social media will require give and take. You must not stop with just tweeting. Make sure to respond to the tweet from followers.

Over a two-week period of time, Starbucks sent about 31 tweets and did not stop there. Their community managers interacted with the followers by replying to them 3,806 times, mentioning them 4,229 times and retweeting messages about 14 times.

You must go beyond sending only tweet. Try to interact with your fans as it will show that there is someone who is active on your Twitter account and cares a lot about connecting with the followers.

Winding Up
It is true that large and famous brands have more resources and time which they can dedicate to social media tactics, compared to small businesses. Furthermore, there are many excellent ideas which can be utilized in any industry. You have to adapt and emulate these strategies and tactics as your marketing plans.