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Six easy steps to get social media right

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Social media is no longer just a place where people go to have fun, hang out with friends or let them know what they are up to. Since helping an international airline establish its social media presence in Japan five years ago, Custom Media has seen a rapid rise in firms, brands, as well as government and non-government institutions reach out to get professional help with their social networking channels.

The enormous amount of data generated on social media has made platforms such as Twitter and Facebook into marketing giants. Every day on average 500 million tweets are sent, 4.75 billion items are shared by Facebook users and 9,000 snaps per second are sent on Snapchat, culminating in a whopping 2.5 billion snaps per day and growing. Analysing and understanding how to work with all this data has sparked growth in social media consulting specialists.

But what does all this mean for businesses? This data offers firms valuable, real-time insight into consumer behaviour and trends. With the right approach, social media can help businesses build brand awareness, boost loyalty and increase sales. Besides, conducting targeted marketing campaigns has become much easier, with measurable outcomes simpler to track.

Social media is no longer an option—it has become a necessity, enabling firms to reach and engage with their customers. Just as it is important for firms to have a business plan, so it is crucial that social media be part of their marketing plan.

Social media is a great marketing tool to help grow your business. Embrace it. The more your firm uses it, the better you can get to know and delight your customers.

So where do you start? Here is a quick six step guide to getting your social media right.

1. Strategy

Establish a plan detailing how your firm will be using social media to achieve its business objectives. Clearly define what those objectives are: building brand loyalty, increasing customer satisfaction, generating leads or driving web traffic/e-commerce on your site. You might want to consider a specific purpose for each channel—some firms exclusively use Facebook for hiring. Your strategy should include a crisis communication plan for when things do not work out as expected.

2. Audit

Conduct a social media audit of your current activity, if any. List all the channels your firm uses with the relevant data: number of followers/fans, and daily, weekly and monthly average content activity and your fan engagement rates—how........

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