Social media is one of the best ways to source new customers, build sustainable relationships with the existing ones, and ultimately establish a loyal following for your small business. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram empower you to show the “human side” of your business and prove that you actually care about your customers.
Today, if your business doesn’t have a lively presence on social media, you are missing out on earning an audience that’s truly willing to connect with your business. Case in point, eight out of ten (or 80%) Instagram users actively follow a business or brand on the platform, while 72% of them say they have purchased a product they saw on the app. In other words, you’re literally leaving money on the table if you think social media ain’t worth your time.
Investing in social media marketing will help you lower Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) and increase Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). Yet, many businesses fail to leverage social media to its fullest. Why? Because social media marketing is often regarded as a laborious activity requiring oodles of creativity and design skills.
While yes, it does require a bit of creativity and ingenuity to come up with ideas for what to post on social media, the actual content creation doesn’t have to be tricky or expensive. Here are four excellent design tools to kickstart your social media without breaking the bank.
If you’re looking for a dummy-friendly, easy-to-use, all-in-one graphic design tool, then this is it. It is safe to say that every small business doing well on social media relies on Canva for swiftly whipping up professional-looking visuals. This includes regular posts, flyers, collages, presentations, infographics, and what have you.
With hundreds of editable templates, icons, illustrations, stock photos, and an intuitive drag-and-drop interface, you don’t need any design experience whatsoever to create beautiful graphics. The best part? All the essential features you’ll need are included in the “Free Forever” version. And if you feel like an upgrade is in order, the Pro version will only cost you just shy of $10 per month.
Moreover, as already mentioned at the beginning, social media is a great place to manifest the “human side” of your business. Apart from online reputation management, this also means being a bit witty and humorous to entertain and delight your customers. How? Using memes, of course!
Alas, most memes available online are of low quality and resolution, so you’ll have to take some time to create your own original memes. Don’t worry, though. Creating memes is a fun little activity that doesn’t take a lot of time. Besides Canva, you can use online tools like Imgflip or Meme Creator which allow you to upload your own image and overlay meme-style text with ease.
Social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram are now boasting features that enable businesses to sell products directly through the platform.
For example, the image above shows Instagram’s neat new “Checkout” feature, which allows you to showcase and sell your products directly via Instagram.
Now, as this feature is akin to selling your product from a product page on your business website (you have one, right?), your product’s images on Instagram must follow the same level of high standards as they normally would on your product page. That is to say, all your products must be showcased against a pure white background to exude professionalism, and from various angles, too.
For this simple task of removing the background and making it pure white, you can either learn complicated and costly tools like Photoshop or do it instantly in a couple of clicks using AutoClipping. This tool offers an affordable and flexible “pay-as-you-go” option, apart from the usual subscription plans.
It must be crystal clear by now that social media marketing is all about posting visually bewitching content. Twitter’s internal data, for instance, shows people are three times more likely to engage with Tweets that include visual content: images, GIFs, and videos. The same holds true for other social networks. The modern audience is indeed craving for a visual experience.
So, go beyond images to take your social game to the next level. Using GIFs is a terrific way to give an added touch of light-hearted humor to your social assets. Giphy has a huge library of free GIFs and with its refined search functionality, you’ll be able to find all the GIFs you can possibly need, or create one yourself with little effort.
Keep in mind, however, to use GIFs sparingly, just like sprinkling chili flakes over pizza.
The demand for video content is growing each year. The stats speak for themselves:
- 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every single day.
- 1,200% more shares are generated by social videos than text and images combined.
- 53% of consumers engage with a brand after viewing a video on social media.
- 62% of people said they were more interested in a product after seeing it in a Facebook Story (Source).
So, rest assured, investing in video marketing is going to pay off.
Now, video editing is generally seen as a difficult, daunting task. It scares away even the most experienced content marketing professionals. But, with Animoto, you can create powerful social media marketing videos in minutes without any prior video editing experience. Just select a storyboard template and upload your desired images/videos.
Then, adjust the colors, fonts, music, and aspect ratio to your liking. You can even include your logo as a watermark in the corner of your videos to ensure your content builds brand equity with every view. It is easier than it sounds.
Finally, a great but expensive alternative worth checking out is Biteable.
Over to you
Social media is an integral part of any digital marketing strategy. And with these four extremely intuitive tools in your arsenal, the ROI of social media for your business really comes down to your creative efforts and posting consistency.
Of course, building a decent following online takes years, but if you keep at it, your business will reap the lifelong benefits of the all-important word-of-mouth marketing. After all, it is a marathon, not a sprint.