Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is the art of attracting, engaging and inspiring communities on social networks to discover, consume, share and act on brand social content.

 

92% of companies today consider social media important for their business but keeping up with the latest best practices, social media platforms and changes in the industry can be a challenge for brand marketers. Recognized as a top social media blog by Social Media Examiner and many others, TopRank solves that challenge by sharing social media marketing best practices, industry news, interviews, book reviews and liveblogging of presentations at industry conferences.

 

Browse our social media marketing articles to find the answers to your most pressing social media questions.

 

Joshua Nite

Does Snark = Sales? What Consumers REALLY Want from Brands on Social Media

Joshua Nite     Facebook, LinkedIn, Social Media

Social media marketers, do you feel a brief pang of envy when a brand gets sassy on Twitter or Facebook? Do you wish you had the brand identity and/or corporate backing to smack down a troll, a la Wendy’s?

Me too. It’s only natural. Even in a profession as inherently creative as marketing, some of us can fly our freak flags higher than others. If you’re working in financial services, or healthcare, or any number of staid verticals, odds are you have to keep your sarcasm in check.

We may never get the sweet satisfaction of seeing a tweet full of biting wit go viral. But we have to keep perspective. Are we here to get featured on Buzzfeed, or to generate revenue? Does the snark really translate to sales?

Emily Hinderaker

Back to Basics: 5 Tips for Becoming a More Effective Community Manager

Emily Hinderaker     Social Media

Your main goal as a community manager is to advocate your brand on social networks, find and engage potential customers in an online community and deepen the customer’s relationship with the brand. Sounds easy, right?

Wrong. Community management is challenging. Customer expectations are becoming increasingly more demanding, and the customer now has more control over brand reputation than ever before. While this is a real challenge, there is also a huge opportunity for brand messaging that delivers clear, consistent and valuable content to the customer community. As a community manager, it’s important to not only link the customer community to the brand, but also to instill the brand goals and objectives throughout the community.

Caitlin Burgess

Digital Advertising Tips: 5 Scenarios Perfect for Pay-to-Play Tactics

In today’s competitive and content-saturated digital landscape, it’s no secret that it’s becoming increasingly difficult to connect, engage and inspire action from our audiences using only “free” or organic marketing tactics.

As a result, digital advertising, often dubbed “pay-to-play” by marketers, is steadily on the rise. In fact, last fall, eMarketer forecasted that digital advertising spend would surpass TV ad spending for the first time in history by the end of 2016. And that trend is definitely expected to continue.

However, despite rising ad spend, consumers are actively avoiding our ads, according to a 2016 HubSpot Research report. For example, four out of five consumers reported that they closed a browser or exited a website because of an autoplaying ad or a pop up.

Ashley Zeckman

CMWorld Interview: Citrix’s Justin Levy Takes a Dive into Top Social Media Opportunities

The lines between long-form content and social media marketing are becoming blurrier each day. Social networks now allow for native video viewing, live video and even some long-form content. They have essentially become their own content platforms competing with blogs and brand websites.

Facebook alone is on pace to hit approximately 2 billion users this year and other social networks are growing at a rapid pace as well.

To better understand the role that social media marketing plays in today’s digital world, I decided to pick the brain of one of today’s top social media leaders, Justin Levy. Justin is the Director of Social Marketing at Citrix and in addition to being an incredibly talented marketer, he’s very open to sharing what he knows to help other marketers learn and grow.

Will Peterson

You Know Influencers: 5 Tips to Unlock Powerful Employee Advocacy

Will Peterson     Online Marketing, Social Media

[Editor’s Note: I am pleased to introduce you to Will Peterson, another new contributor on TopRankBlog.com. Will is an Account Manager that services many of our B2B Enterprise clients. Welcome Will!]

Don’t look now, but you’re surrounded by influencers. You may not realize it, and they may not realize it themselves, but you and everyone you work with carry an immense amount of potential influence. Read on to discover how to uncover a powerful hidden force that can add significant value to everything from your company’s social media presence all the way down to its bottom line.

Caitlin Burgess

3 Important Ways Social Media Can Boost Your SEO

Caitlin Burgess     SEO, Social Media

Today, there’s little doubt among marketers that SEO and social media are two must-have components of any effective digital marketing strategy. After all, SEO is arguably the founding-father-tactic of digital marketing, and social media is the place on the web where our audiences gather, share and engage every day.

But over the years, there’s been some confusion on how these two tactics work together to achieve marketing results—and understandably so. Back in 2010, Google told Search Engine Land’s Danny Sullivan that links shared on Facebook and Twitter were used as a ranking signal. Then in 2014, Google’s Matt Cutts released a video stating Facebook and Twitter pages were “currently” treated like any other web page for search—i.e. social media was no longer a direct ranking factor.

Caitlin Burgess

What Brands Need to Know About Instagram’s New ‘Paid Partnership’ Feature

Caitlin Burgess     Influencer Marketing, Social Media

Influencer marketing is booming—and it’s not hard to see why. Influencers lend authority and credibility to your brand and content, help connect you with new audiences, and typically deliver more ROI than traditional digital marketing tactics. As a result, brands large and small are forming both paid and unpaid partnerships with influencers—and using social platforms to spread their message.

For those brands and marketers engaging in paid partnerships with influencers on Instagram, a change is on the horizon. Last week, Instagram officially announced it would soon roll out its new “paid partnership with” tag for posts and stories.

Caitlin Burgess

7 Examples of eCommerce Brands Rocking Social Media Marketing

Caitlin Burgess     Social Media

Today’s consumers are becoming increasingly self-directed in their buying habits, leveraging the internet to research products as well as make easy purchases without setting foot in a brick and mortar store. In fact, 96% of Americans have made an online purchase in their life, with 80% having made a purchase in the past month alone, according to Bigcommerce.

As a result, eCommerce has exploded, and countless online-only retailers and marketplaces such as Amazon, Wayfair and eBay have emerged to meet consumer demand—as well as give well-established brands a run for their money.

Of course, as digital entities, most eCommerce brands embrace several digital marketing tactics—especially social media marketing—to build their brand, engage with current and prospective customers, provide personalized customer service, and get the sales. And we can all learn a little something from what online-only brands are doing.

Caitlin Burgess

Behind the Marketing Curtain: An Interview With Social Media Wiz Beverly Jackson, MGM Resorts International

Caitlin Burgess     Interviews, Social Media

Behind the Marketing Curtain with Beverly Jackson

It’s no secret that social media has become an important and necessary digital marketing tactic, giving brands the opportunity to create meaningful connections with their desired audience. But as most brands have found, the secret to social success isn’t achieved with a simple click of the heels.

Most often, the road to success is long and winding, requiring smarts, courage and heart to drive your message home to your audience. Of course, many marketers experience a few wicked hiccups along the way—all of witch require creative and holistic solutions.

The good news is that you can always look north to find colorful and creative inspiration from talented marketing sorcerers—like the intelligent, witty and tenacious Beverly Jackson, Vice President of Social Portfolio Strategy for MGM Resorts International.

Ashley Zeckman

Report: Social Media Examiner 2017 State of Social Media Marketing

Ashley Zeckman     Social Business, Social Media

The past 12 months have been big for social media marketers. Each social platform has seen significant changes or upgrades creating opportunity, and adding complexity for many marketers.

Facebook introduced live video, Twitter made it easier to fit your message in 140 characters, Snapchat added collaboration features and Pinterest launched promoted video.

The question on many marketers minds is:  what has truly changed in the way that B2B and B2C marketers approach social media marketing? The new Social Media Marketing Industry Report from Social Media Examiner takes a deep dive into the current state of social media on a granular level.

But how does social media marketing effort and success differ between B2B and B2C brands? Find out below.

Emily Hinderaker

Master LinkedIn’s New Lead Generation Forms in 10 Easy Steps

Emily Hinderaker     LinkedIn, Online Advertising

[Editor’s Note: This is the first post from one of the newer members of our team, Emily Hinderaker. Emily joined TopRank Marketing earlier this year as a Marketing Copywriter.]

The one item that marketers crave above everything else is information about their prospects. Often, there is even a dollar amount assigned to gaining access to a name, email or phone number. In a time where this information is highly coveted, what is one thing marketers can do to make it easy for prospects to convert?

The answer, targeted, compelling, one-click conversions.

According to Stephen Slater, Digital Advertising Manager at TopRank Marketing here’s why:

Caitlin Burgess

8 Fundamental Elements of a Successful Social Media Marketing Strategy

Caitlin Burgess     Social Media

Social media is a staple marketing tactic for nearly every business, helping brands build awareness, share and interact with customers and prospects, and create important touch points in the changing customer journey.

However, both green and seasoned marketers are still trying to nail down what a successful social media marketing strategy looks like. According to Social Media Examiner’s 2016 industry report, 90% of marketers say social media is important to their business. However, just 41% say they’re able to measure the ROI of their social activities.

As any successful marketer will tell you, the road to success begins by physically documenting your strategy. As for what needs to be included, below you’ll find some essential elements to consider.