How to use social media effectively (Part 3)

This is the final part of our 3-part series on effective use of social media.

After investing time and money into your product launch and building your brand on social media, you could be thinking, "So how does this actually help my business and convert into sales?".

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question as it would depend largely on your business objectives. From our conversations with small business owners, we have identified two broad strategies that could offer positive results:
  1. Play the numbers game: More traffic, more potential for successful sales
  2. Be extremely targeted: Specify your core customer base and hit them hard (figuratively, of course)
One approach may work better than the other or depend on your product or service, a combination of both. Below is a list of best practice options to help you get started.

Approach: Increase page likes and engagement

Keep your content relevant and interesting. A rule of thumb would be 30% promotional content that links back to your website or blog, and 70% value-added content that includes relevant information your target audience would find useful or interesting. 

On all the social networks (especially Twitter and Instagram), use hashtags. You could also follow users who are using the hashtags you want to be associated with, including those who are actively following your competitors (Chances are, they would be interested in a similar product or service!). For #hashtag #bestpractices, read our post here.
Attractive promotional content will encourage likes and engagement
Sharing relevant content helps you reach your customer's social circles

Approach: Build your presence locally

If you've identified local residents as your next target, you can reach them in two ways: organically or through targeted ads. Build rapport with local businesses in your area and tap onto their customer base (which is likely to be people living in the vicinity). Tag them in your posts and share news that will interest the local community.

Creating an offer targeting residents within a specific area is another quick and easy way to gain new customers and sales. For example, if you are selling flowers, create an offer for the residents living within 5kms of your store and target them through location-specific ads.
Help local customers identify with your business

Approach: Engage your audience at the right time

Figure out what you want to post and use a scheduling tool to plan your posts. Different businesses may find different days and time work best for them. Timing also depends on the platform you're using, how your target audience interacts with that platform, the region(s) you're targeting, the content of your post, and your goals (clicks vs shares).
Plan your conversation around key times and dates

Approach: Reach a new customer base

Maybe you've created a product line that would appeal to a whole new demographic and you would like to target a specific group of customers. Through the use of targeted ads, you can refine your audience based on interest, age group, location and more. You can even exclude people you do not want to sell to. This option is very cost effective and gives you the opportunity to craft extremely targeted sales campaigns.
Understand your core target audience to create effective ad campaigns

Approach: Analyse and improvise

If you've launched a sales campaign on Instagram, create a shortened link for your Instagram account that links to your website. One of the simplest ways is to create a trackable link using and then measure it using Colibri IO.

Facebook analytics offers ample insights into how your audience is engaging with your page and posts. Identify popular posts and do more of them. Is there a pattern of shares at a specific time? Or do certain types of posts incite more comments and interactions? Knowing how your followers interact with your social media account is key to achieving your goals.

Optimise your posts based on audience response (Image credit:
Remember, it's good to try new ways to reach your business objectives. But at the end of the day, it is important to track, measure and analyze your efforts so you can identify what's working and what needs tweaking (not twerking.)

Did you find our 3-part series useful? If any of our strategies worked for you, leave us a comment or drop us note at

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