Social Media has a massive user-base of 2.307 billion and is now being leveraged by 81% of the small and medium-sized marketers to gain the attention of their target audience; however, one thing is certain that not everyone is yielding the same success. With tons of information exploding on social media every second, the task of stealing audience attention from the pictures and gifs of cute dogs and babies circulating all over requires a bit of homework. Generating leads through social media is still a dream to many businesses; still there are a few names that convert social leads quite easily and effectively. If you are sitting there and doubting your ability to extract optimum ROI from social media, here are the 5 proven steps that would help you generate converting leads on social networks. #1. Know Your Visitor (A basic one, but trust me it never goes out of style!) Hence, the main motive of all your social media strategies pivot around making the user convert, it gets really important to know your user and establish a connect in order to persuade him to take an action. Seek answers to the following questions as a part of the first step of your strategy- Who Is Your Target? In order to formulate an effective strategy, you need to be clear about who do you want to target with your efforts. Before picking up a particular social network, define your niche and try to be as specific as possible with your approach if you want to aim the users who are genuinely interested in your business and would likely convert. Where Is Your Target? Now that you know who you are targeting, invest some time in figuring out the networks where they hang out the most and stick to them. The easiest way to find your target audience is by studying the demographics of a particular social network. After studying the user-base of a social network, you can leverage the information to target your prospects effectively; for instance- the large network of LinkedIn has the highest average income, which automatically makes it a suitable platform to sell luxury commodities. What Influences Your Target? In order to be more specific while aiming your audience, reach out to the influencers that your target users are in touch with. People usually follow the users that exhibit something in common; therefore, seek out for the influencers in the similar niche that your target audience is connected to. To do the same, you can use influencer search tools and connect with the influencers from your niche that your target audience follows. #2. Play With Visitor’s Psychology Held by the constant pressure of increasing the traffic and conversion rate, marketers tend to forget that there is a real person on the other side of the screen and not a data-driven machine. All the strategies that you are forming on the basis of numbers and analytics are well and good; however, a slight grasp of the ‘human behavior’ and ‘mind’ could additionally help you to deliver on their needs better. Inculcate The Fear Of Missing Out So about 56% of the social media users live in fear of missing out on an important news, event, or detail if they don’t keep a constant check on their social networking accounts! In my opinion, it is the fear of missing out that keeps social networks buzzing all day and night. As a marketer, if you want to succeed on social media you would have to create the similar fear so the visitors can not stray away from your page for long. Win Them By Social Proofs From pompously flaunting the number of customers served in a month to associating a celebrity, and incorporating customer testimonials; social proofs have gained momentum in the past owing to a substantial increase in their use on social media platforms. It is said that customer reviews are trusted 12 times more than the copies from the sales manufacturers, as people tend to trust the knowledge of people that surround them and choose to follow their lead. Promise A Secret The practice isn’t new, but it’s offering high returns to the social media marketers in the form of increased CTRs. When a person isn’t aware of the fact he wants to know about, the lack of knowledge creates a “curiosity gap” in him. The social media marketers very cleverly leverage this curiosity gap by teasing the audience with limited information so that they feel the desire to access the information present on the other side of the click. Offer Takeaways Offering takeaways is perhaps the easiest and a vital step, if you seek to build long term relations with your social media audience. Return your audience and influencers with exclusive takeaways like discounts, free newsletters or gifts, etc. This Is How Samsung Surprised Its Social Media Fan and Built Brand Advocacy with a Single Move #3. Plan An Effective Content Promotion Schedule I strongly second that creating engaging content remains to be the backbone of an effective social media strategy, but the value of driving as much traffic to it couldn’t be undermined in the light of your seriousness for content. Sharing content multiple times on social networking sites generates strong reactions, but how to do it without appearing as a bugging spammer requires a bit of planning. Develop An Effective Sharing Schedule To obtain the optimum from your content promotion efforts, begin with planning a simple sharing schedule that helps you to manage your content sharing on each social networking site. An average content sharing schedule answers the basic questions of the marketer like: How many times can I share a particular content on a social network? At what time would I get optimum user response? How long would my content remain fresh on the social network? What should be the time gap between each social message? How can I create variation in your social sharing? One the basis of the aforementioned questions form a planning schedule for each social network you are dealing with and keep analyzing the growth time to time. Refrain From Sharing Same Message Twice It’s not what you share, but how you share it that differentiates you from all those unruly spammers present on social networks. Instead of the bombarding your followers with the same message, again and again, add variation in every post you re-share. You can pull quotes from the post itself, ask a question, use alternate headlines, or cite an evoking fact that tempts the reader to click the post shared by you. Optimize For Each Platform Every social media network has its own way of handling texts and images. Where Google+ displays a longer copy with a markdown text in each post, Twitter displays the tweets with an image in a more noticeable way compared to the tweets without an image. By critically examining the posting styles of each social network and optimizing the content accordingly, you could leverage upon the strength of each platform for your success. Analyze It is extremely vital to keep monitoring the results of your efforts to make sure that your strategies are working. Also analyzing your page time to time helps you to come across the issues like decreasing post activity, increasing negative feedbacks, fading interest of the users, and allows you to study the reason behind such issues to curb them with effective measures. #4. Right Practice For The Right Platform Facebook Most effective activities to generate leads on facebook: Run Engaging Contests: Ask participants to register by listing their E-mail IDs and share the contest with their friends & relatives. Invite your E-mail contacts to Facebook page Leverage Facebook’s targeted advertising to reach your potential customers Twitter Most effective activities to generate leads on Twitter: Incorporate a CTA in your twitter bio Incorporate a CTA in your twitter header Start Using Your Twitter Cards More to enrich your tweets Pin A Tweet On The Top Of Your Profile That Directs a Visitor To Your Landing Page LinkedIn Most effective activities to generate leads on LinkedIn: Be a participant and support a big LinkedIn Group to increase connection Create a software or solution that solves the business problems of your community on LinkedIn Instagram Most effective activities to generate leads on LinkedIn: Link your website in your Insta bio Add CTAs on pictures Add links to your website in your image descriptions #5. Work On Your Conversion Strategy With an increase in your reach and presence on social media, you will notice that with time more and more people will start connecting to you organically, but of what use are the growing followers if they don’t convert? In order to make the audience accept your offer, you have to present in a way they can’t refuse. Offer Gated Content If you have a great piece of marketing content that your target audience might be interested in, put it behind the gate. A gate is a form that a user is asked to fill with their name, E-mail IDs, and other details to access the content. The users that fill the gate to get content are further added to the lead funnel and are contacted by the sales team. Create A Clutter-Free Path To Conversion In the haste of creating a social networking page that engages user, marketers unknowingly leave no opportunity for the followers to become customers. Apart from mentioning the link to your website on your social media page, keep your CTAs clear, and navigation easy for the leads to take an action. Invite customers from Facebook through a custom Facebook tab, and make sure that your number is clearly visible on each of your social networking accounts to make it easy for the lead to call you. Always remember, no matter how engaging and captivating your social media content is, your business is missing out if that content isn’t converting leads. The things that I have mentioned above would help you to convert leads through social media; however, these tips don’t have to be set in stone. Keep analyzing your growth time to time and discard what isn’t working right away. With the hope that the information would help you to generate converting leads through social media, I take your leave. Good Luck. Images: ” Young businessman drawing social media diagram concept. 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