Social media marketing is one of the most misunderstood and overused terms in the industry. The major problem is most of us use social media and so like real estate and cooking, we are all experts.

And, we actually are…at one small part of the process.

Social media marketing has very little to do with the platforms we know and love. If it did, we would begin and complete all our transactions on Facebook, Twitter and Snapchat without the need for any further information. But like everything else, the process is far more complicated and requires significantly more than a few posts here and there.

Just like content marketing, search engine optimisation and pay per click, social media marketing is a series of movements, that needs to be adjusted in line with the response from the target audience.

New Call-to-action

Imagine you see something you would like to purchase on social media. A canny advertiser has identified you as a potential customer, and as a result, you click.

Then, you go to a landing page, Then perhaps look through the company website, check the price and once you’re happy you make a decision – purchase, or don’t.

Each of these stages offers customers the opportunity to decide to do something else. If the process isn’t ideal, they will simply close the window and walk away. Everything, from the original add to the targeted landing page, the final offering and the link to the e-commerce platform – absolutely everything must fit with the customers buying process, or else they are gone.

social media marketing

Worse than that, they will probably go to a competitor’s website, you having already done the hard work of making them aware of a product, and literarily paying for it with your ad.

We focus on the tools used to attract attention, but the social media platforms are far from the most important part of the process. This is the reason that companies, most of whom statistically just have a link to their website get confused when ads, “don’t work,” and clicks increase, but sales do not. This is the equivalent of deciding a diet doesn’t work after trying it out for one meal.

In order to create a social media marketing campaign that works, look first your buyer personas, then create a buying process that will resonate with them, based on an inherent need or an immediate problem. Maintain that narrative through the entire process, and elegantly allow them to make a purchase.

Then measure everything. Use all the tools at your disposal, we love Hot Jar For heat maps, and they have a free trial.

Pay attention to the types of people that are clicking on your ad, and where they are falling over during the process. Then make changes based on science, not assumption and measure again. The magic formula is there somewhere, you just need to be patient enough to find it.

But it’s not on Facebook, Snapchat or Twitter.