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So, you’re not seeing results from your social media efforts. Your engagement rates are low, conversions are near-to-nothing and you aren’t reaching your business objectives. Here are six quick ways to tell if your current social media marketing strategy is failing — and how to fix it.

1. Goals are Not Guiding Your Content

You can’t just post and pray. Expecting a conversion from a single tweet or a lead from a blog post is just not reasonable. You need to set S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timely) goals for your social media marketing strategy. Every tweet, post, comment and reply should directly align with your business goals. Constantly ask your editorial team: What message are we trying to send to the public, and how does this content align with our social goals?

2. You Do Not Know Your Audience

Who is your ideal customer? How do they prefer to interact and on what channels? If you have not identified your target and current audience you cannot expect your content to resonate. Worse yet, you may be using a completely different channel than where your target buyer lives online. Do some research to determine which channels make the most sense for your content distribution.

3. You Don’t Lead With Thought-Leadership Content

Nobody likes a hard sale. Is your social content the equivalent to a pushy car salesmen? Some organizations make the mistake of pushing their products or services without educating the market on the benefit of acquiring them. Fifty-five percent of B2B marketers say they are unclear on what content marketing success or effectiveness looks like. Lead with education and know your buyer persona’s core problems you are solving. Then create custom content — blogs, e-books, infographics — to push your message into market in a less obvious and more palatable way.

4. You Aren’t Using Multiple Channels

If you aren’t cross promoting, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. You need to go beyond your company’s LinkedIn page. Did you know the federal government ranks YouTube as the most useful social marketing channel? Or that 22 percent of the world’s population uses Facebook, and 74 percent of people say they use Facebook for professional purposes? Chances are, that would be a great place to find your target buyer. Invest part of your marketing budget into social media testing. Explore new channels, you may be surprised of the ROI!

5. You Aren’t Testing Ads or Sponsored Posts 

While it is important to set a foundation with your social presence using organic tactics, you must also consider ads and sponsored posts. Putting money behind your content allows you to use the full capabilities of each social platform and help you target your desired audience. Using paid early on is a great way to engage a very targeted audience that could impact the future organic growth of your social channels. You can select demographic criteria for each ad, setting specific parameters to personalize your content and push it to to individuals who have a high likelihood to convert. Also, don’t forget to look beyond Facebook ads — 84 percent of those using social advertising are already on Facebook. Consider Google ads, LinkedIn sponsored posts and Twitter promotions to stand out from the crowd.

6. You Aren’t Paying Attention to Metrics

The old adage is true — you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Some organizations schedule their posts and forget the most critical part: optimization. Without setting key performance indicators for success and tracking your ads and organic posts against those metrics, how will you ever know if your content is resonating? Do research against industry standards and set internal benchmarks for click-thru rate, conversions and engagement.

Central to every business’ success with social media is an effective marketing strategy. Organic or paid, social media can be a daunting and annoying platform for any business. But, if you tackle these six pitfalls, you’ll be off to a great start.

If your social media strategy still needs a boost, contact us at Merritt Group,, today to get the right mix of organic and paid social for campaign success!

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