Deploying your social marketing program can be a test of effort, organization, and execution. The largest brands with the most successful marketing strategies even falter from time to time. Through years of evolution in the social media industry combined with trail and error, we’ve learned what it takes to truly have a successful social media strategy that is poised for success in marketing to users on a variety of virtual platforms.

By analyzing what the country’s biggest brand names are doing in social media, we can unearth key insights into trends in social media as well as what these brands are focusing on within their own company to make their social media strategy a success. Social Media Examiner delves further into some of the trends, tactics, and key marketing strategies for success in today’s social media campaigns from some of the biggest businesses.

Trends in the world of social media are what drives the efforts of the most successful brands with their marketing campaigns. We’ve touched on many of these topics before, but here are some key trends to look out for when strategizing your social media campaign:

  1. Certain platforms are better poised for success. For instance, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Youtube are all major players in the future marketing plans for many companies. At the same time, those marketers want to learn the most about Facebook, while both Facebook and LinkedIn truly hold the most promise for marketers.
  2. It’s a ‘top-down effort’ and a growing priority for companies. Not only is social becoming a top priority for brands around the world, but the emphasis is increasing for top-down interest. Your C-level employees can dramatically improve the outcome of your marketing efforts, helping to support employees and their efforts as well.
  3. Expect certain medias to advance over others. Video, podcasting, and other visuals are on an upwards trajectory.
  4. Audience involvement is a primary goal. This is why we stress that posting content is important, but posting engaging content is even more so! Measure audience involvement with metrics that track likes, comments, and so forth.
  5. Curation is a top marketing tactic. Along the lines of creating engaging content is the fact that companies are creating and curating original content at all in the first place. It’s a fairly new development for social media marketing, but brands are finding that the success to making an impact in the world of social media is to connect their social media efforts with measured successes for the brand itself. GaggleAMP and other measuring tools help to show how effective your content curation is at drawing in and engaging users, and many tools are now designed to trace your curated content directly to new leads, showing you from beginning to end how well your content performed in the grand scheme of social media and sales.

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Sure, following trends can help you shape and execute your marketing efforts, but what are big brands actually doing to promote a successful marketing strategy? Here are a few areas of importance to consider when developing your social media marketing policies, plans, and tactics:

Staffing : Many large companies typically employ social media strategists specifically for the purposes of marketing. They are supported by higher-level employees like VPs, CEOs, and so forth, but then there is also a multitude of ‘part-timers’ that promote the efforts as well. This is where your employee advocates come into play, effectively boosting your social media reach and boosting your social media efforts.

Priorities : Your high-level employees like CEOs typically believe that social media should be a priority, but making social media marketing a priority for the entire company should also be just as important. Even if your leadership believes in social as a worthwhile investment in time, effort, and staff, you have to put it into practice to truly see the success. Integrate social media marketing with broader, non-social marketing efforts to improve efficacy and promote social to the same level of priority as other marketing tactics. Remember, taking priority also involves an investment in budget towards social media-related expenses too!

Engagement : Understanding how to best connect with users offers a unique competitive advantage to those who can truly figure out those intricacies. Indeed, knowing how to engage your users is still a top concern for most marketers today.

Strategy and Tactics : Primary objectives for big brands on social media are brand awareness and customer loyalty, and this helps shapes your strategy and tactics. Many of these tactics will focus on content curation, branded blogs, word-of-mouth programs, branded communities or forums, and accepting customer ratings/reviews on your own brand’s sites. Check out Ramsey Ksar’s tips on how to host social events in his podcast with GaggleAMP.

Measure and Analyze : Finally, don’t forget to measure and analyze your social media efforts along the way to ensure efficacy of your strategies. There are several tools - even on GaggleAMP - that can track your posts to see which ones are garnering the most engagement and funneling users to your brand, helping to generate new leads and sales.

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