The marketing landscape has changed a lot over the years, and brands are now looking for different ways to grow and engage a community of their loyal customers and followers. A great way to go around this is to create and nurture a social media community that actively participates and provides excellent value for other community members.
Although social media giants like Facebook and Twitter have been around for quite some time, it’s been only a few years since businesses realized this opportunity in social media marketing and are now utilizing it to its fullest potential.
Instead of using these social media platforms for advertising, brands are now using them to build an inspiring social community of loyal customers and provide them a better experience through engaging with them on social media. These direct communications with customers and prospects allow brands to interact more efficiently and build a rock-solid community of their fans.
Table of Content: 11 Effective Ways to Build a Social Media Community
- What Are Social Media Communities and Why Do They Matter?
- 11 Best Practices to Grow Your Social Media Community
What Are Social Media Communities and Why Do They Matter?
Social media communities are a group of individuals who share a common interest around any particular topic, goal, or interest. These individuals are dedicated to a common cause and participate in activities and discussions around a specific problem that can help bring value to their community. These communities are also established around a particular brand or product, and the people following are a part of your social community.
(Source: Champ Community Group)
These social media communities are essential due to various factors:
- First of all, they promote engagement, and this engagement can help bring users closer to your brand.
- They help spread brand awareness and can help attract potential prospects.
- They help establish brand loyalty and can foster a trust factor among your followers.
- These communities inspire others to share their ideas, and these ideas can lead to innovations that can help solve different problems.
Now, these communities require proper focus and attention to nurture and grow, and this is where marketers and their strategies are tested. Having a large following doesn’t always count when it comes to defining a healthy community; an engaged audience does!
11 Best Practices to Grow Your Social Media Community:
Make Your Business Discoverable
It’s no doubt that more easily found brands get more visibility and are more likely to get followers for their social community than brands that are simply hard to look up. Make your brands easily discoverable by using different tactics like:
- Make sure your social handles align with your brand name. This way, they would quickly pop up if someone tried to run them through searches on their social media.
- Try placing social icons of your handles on your website; this would quickly help redirect customers or prospects to your social community.
- Similarly, place links to your social handles in emails that you send to your customers. Few brands who publish a monthly newsletter put them inside, giving direct access to their subscribers.
- Join industry or niche-related conversations; when you are engaging in these conversations, try to deliver value through your response, this can grab people’s attention in that particular thread.
Identify your Audience
A social media community exists in different forums and platforms. Like a Facebook Group where individuals have friendly conversations around a particular interest, or on Instagram where people are more interested in consuming visual content or on YouTube. A social community could exist anywhere, al, your brand needs to do is to identify and exist on the right platform. Identifying your target audience plays a key role here. Try to map a customer persona and track where they reside. This could help you redirect your marketing efforts in the right direction and generate quality leads.
Cross-Promote on Other Channels
(Source: Social Champ YouTube Channel)
One of the best ways to grow your social media community is to cross-promote on other channels. Like sharing a link to your Facebook Group on Twitter or sharing a link to your Facebook Page on your Instagram; all of this helps increase your community’s reach and discoverability. Be sure to share links to your other social media channels in your content, emails, and anything you publish. This would enable you to capture an audience from these different platforms and turn them into your followers.
Use Social Champ to Post on Multiple Social Media Platforms
Social Champ is an easy-to-use tool that helps you schedule your social media posts on multiple platforms. Whether you need to post one time or multiple times, Social Champ lets you do this on your own time.
Although engaging content grabs attention, it’s essential to respond to comments to uplift your social media community. When you engage with your commenters by responding to their words, your community appreciates your responsiveness and is motivated to engage with your posts daily. This also helps amplify your content and increases its visibility and organic reach. You can keep your replies aligned and on track through Social Champ’s engage feature that lets you connect all your social inboxes in one place.
When using social media as a community hub, remaining accessible and approachable plays a vital part. It is essential that community members feel confident in approaching your brand.
Try to listen to what they are saying and then respond to them. Members feel encouraged when they receive timely responses and get answers to their queries.
(Source: Champ Community Group)
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Share Your Ideas
Brands need to lead their social media community with their vision. Sharing your plans for the future is an excellent way for your business to include your community in the process and help build trust. Everybody loves it when asked about their opinions, and their responses should define a brand’s journey.
There’s no doubt that feedback is essential, but what connects people to you are your shared beliefs and ideas. Discussing what you’re thinking and where you want to be will help unite your followers and grow a stronger, more passionate community.
(Source: Champ Community Group)
Experiment Once Every Few Weeks
Social media platforms now offer different ways through which you can experiment with your content ideas. As such, you can experiment with going Live, posting GIFs, polls, and videos. You should try different content ideas to increase your social media engagement and see which one gets the most likes.
Finding the correct type of content would prove to be essential in your content marketing strategy and would help deliver your brand’s message more productively.
Solve A Problem
Social media should not always be used primarily for selling; instead, use it to interact with your customers and understand their pain points. There are lots of businesses out there with products similar to yours. To stand out, you must enhance their experience by solving problems unique to them. This would help build trust in the community and increase brand awareness. Who knows these customers might turn out to be future brand advocates who could share their experience with others and help drive in leads through their word-of-mouth marketing.
Events are a perfect way to connect with your community; many brands today now host events around a common interest. They can deliver value to their fellow members and get feedback from the community. These events can have several programs like discussing a topic from industry experts or a meet-up; anything that could help bring members together.
Not many businesses practice this, but it’s pretty essential to know where your brand is being talked about on social media. Here’s where social listening plays its part. Social listening tools can help track positive or negative mentions of a particular keyword or brand name. Identifying such comments and responding to them quickly could help your business avoid a social media crisis. It could also help identify happy customers and invite them to be a part of your social community.
Reward Your Top Contributors
If you genuinely want your community to flourish, you should start with rewarding your top contributors; this gives a sense of appreciation and motivates other community members to engage in your content actively. This reward could be anything from a discount voucher to a free giveaway or a social media shout-out, anything that would make them happy.
Analyze your social media data to find out who your top contributors are. These will be the people responsible for growing your social media community. Motivate these members to share their own content and spark exciting conversations on your social profiles bringing their contributions into the spotlight.
Create content for your top fans, share their stories, interview them or share their videos. Invite them to co-create content with your organization focused on why they love your brand. All of these would make members feel connected with your social community.
Social media is a land of wonder; here, every person can make a huge impact, and when this number rises, it can turn out to be a game-changer for any business or brand. Remember it does not always sell! sell! sell! On social media, use these platforms to deliver value to your customers. Take their feedback and respond to them. They are the ones who really matter, and through their feedback, your brand can adapt to changing times. This would help create brand awareness and pave the way for building an engaged social media community for your brand.