Social media changed the world. Not only has it spawned the most titanic network known to man, but it has changed the way we process information, communicate, interact, and so forth.
The vastness of its influence has been both progressive and detrimental. However, it has proven itself to be an incredibly powerful marketing tool for startups. Not only just reach, but access.
With the billions of posts, photos, and content shared per day, we’re processing information at higher speeds than ever before. That means if the right content is released at the right timing, it’ll spread to millions in minutes.
If you’re a startup looking to engage with social media and use it for branding/marketing, we’ve compiled some of the unique ways startups have spread their word via the medium.
Powerful, engaging content
Let’s consider a company like Magic Leap. You don’t even need to know what they are (they’re a virtual reality company, for all you curious cats) – the important component is that before they even released their product, they gained over 50,000 likes on Facebook and accumulated over 32,000 twitter followers, with millions in views.
How did they do that? Before they ‘launched’ their product, they created a bunch of engaging, thought-provoking, interactive content that spread like wildfire. The lesson here is create engaging content.
Seriously, if you focus on keeping a steady stream of interactive content that promotes your brand/product/service, you can garner followers well before you’re even ready to sell to them.
Create a narrative
If you create a narrative, you can remain consistent and promote your brand. What is Geico? It’s a weird lizard talking about car insurance. The startup Squatty Potty is a company that sells something which helps with toilet posture. Apparently we hurt our back by sitting incorrectly while we’re pooping.
Well – their video of a unicorn pooping ice cream narrated by a weird dude dressed like he’s from the feudal ages took off. Just because of that.
Or Slippa, a round beach towel company that has been incredibly successful by creating lifestyle imagery using its products. Slippa realized that yes, people love pretty pictures on social media, and they especially love them when they pertain to lifestyle. Let’s feed off that but put our own products in pictures (branded content) we’re posting. That’s their narrative. That’s what people know them by.
Strategy & Goals
You have to sit down and develop a strategy for how you’re going to crack into social media, and then establish the goals you want to achieve from it. What’s your narrative? What platforms are you going to use? Are you going to use humor and create concise, funny content for online media? If so –do you have the chops for it? Are you guys funny? Can you film and edit or do you need to hire someone for that?
Then – what do you want to achieve? Brand awareness of course, but what else? Do you want people to visit and engage? Or do you want to sell your product/service upfront? It’s rare that a successful startups just simply said –yeah, let’s put a unicorn pooping up, that might be funny. Most often successful social media marketing campaigns come from long hours of strategizing and preparing.
Let’s talk about GoPro
Yeah, we know, they’re not a startup but their social media marketing is ingenious. Show off what you got. What is GoPro? A small, incredibly versatile and portable camera that captures high-quality footage.
So what did they do? They created a stream of highly engaging, high-intensity videos that they shot on their own product. What better way to market then saying, hey watch this video – wasn’t that amazing? That was our product that produced it. Again, show off what you got.
Listening to your audience
Lots of startups are using their marketing campaigns as an ‘experiment’ to gage user responsiveness. That means they’re producing content, releasing it, and then sitting back and reading the comments/opinions people have about said content.
Although there’s a clutter of garbage perspective and slander on social media, a lot can be gained by processing the data of people’s first impressions. If startups find a common thread in confusion/problems people have with the content their producing or the product they’re promoting, they can implement changes to fix them.
There’s no golden ticket when it comes to social media marketing. It works sometimes, literally blows up sometimes, and other times it’s a dud and never catches on.
If you do some research on the unique ways startups use social media to spread their word, you’ll quickly realize it almost always has to do with the quality of the content they produce. Create engaging content that promotes your product and relates to your audience, then get out there and share it.