How did your last organic social media post perform? If it’s like most organic social media posts from businesses, only 5% of your followers saw it. Only 5%?!
Given the time, thought, and energy you put into developing your organic social posts, it’s a shame that reach is so low.
But that doesn’t mean that organic—or free—social media publishing is irrelevant. Sixty-eight percent of customers agree that social media enables them to interact with brands and companies.
So how do you expand your reach? It requires a combination of both organic and paid social media strategies.
The importance of organic social
Organic social media posts aren’t associated with ad dollars and show up in your brand’s social feed. You can tell your brand story, connect with followers, build relationships, and share valuable information.
Publishing organically helps you stay top of mind with your audience. Share things like product updates, behind the scenes videos/photos, blog articles, and company news.
Tips for organic posts
- Make it engaging. Create content that compels people to respond.
- Keep audiences looking. Algorithms favor posts that people spend time on. Videos or pictures in a carousel can often outperform a single image because they take more time to view.
- Mix it up: Publish a good mixture of videos, polls, pictures, gifs, etc.
- Add value. Don’t pester your fans with your sales pitch over and over. Give them information they can use. Or even better, information they want to share with others.
Whether you’ve been publishing posts for three months or three years, analytics show you how that content performs.
Look at your top performing posts and analyze what made them successful. Then make sure future posts include those successful elements.
Perhaps you’ve been posting steadily on your page and aren’t seeing the growth and conversions you hoped for. This is where paid social media can support organic.
Combining paid capabilities with your organic strategy elevates both. They are better together.
Importance of paid social
Paid social media guarantees reach. You are paying to be higher in the algorithm and reach people who wouldn’t normally see your content.
Paid social media serves your content to a very specific audience—one of your choosing. You can specifically target people based on interests, behaviors, age, location, and more.
You can also set very specific goals and timelines for your ads. Run an ad for two weeks geared toward gaining followers. Run an ad for a month with the goal of downloading an ebook. Or create an ad designed for general brand awareness.
Paid social ads really can lead to new buyers. Twenty-seven percent of internet users say they find new brands and products through paid social ads.
Tips for paid posts
- Choose platforms your audience uses. Research can help you determine which social platform(s) your target audience uses. Place ads on those platforms.
- Define your goals. Are you looking for brand awareness? Are you looking to grow followers on your page? Is your goal conversions? Once you know exactly what you are trying to do, you can write a clear call to action that reflects that goal. That goal also defines who you target and what kind of ad to run.
- Experiment with ad placement and format. Try different placements and figure out which one best achieves your goal. Carousel ads on Facebook are great for businesses selling products. You can upload 10 images of your product and connect each one with a unique link.
- A/B test ads. Test ads one variable at a time. You can test different images, copy, and calls to action. This information will help you get the most out of your ad budget.
Leverage organic social media data for paid ads
As we stated earlier, social media algorithms don’t favor business page content. But instead of abandoning organic altogether, support it with a paid strategy.
Start by using your successful organic posts as a guide. Knowing what your target audience likes and responds to makes creating paid ads easier.
Your organic post demographic data can help too. Analyze who is already enjoying your brand and target those people with your paid posts. Create a look-alike audience to your current followers and target those people.
Organic data can also inform the timing of your paid ads. Maximize your budget by running ads on the days and times your audience is most active. Many native platforms and third-party publishing apps provide this information.
The other key to maximizing your organic data for paid social is through retargeting. For Facebook, in particular, you have an option to target people who have already engaged with your content.
It’s akin to a hot lead versus a cold call. Retargeting people who already like you with offers or other relevant content is a great way to create raving fans.
Finally, in platforms like Facebook, you can boost (put money behind) organic posts that are performing well.
Posts that already have many comments, likes, and shares are the best posts to boost. A high engagement rate shows that the content was interesting to the audience. Followers are more likely to click on a post with 100 likes, 60 comments, and 42 shares than a post with just 3 likes. SocialPilot
Maximize your social media with a cohesive hybrid strategy
Now that we’ve established the benefits of organic and paid social media and how they support each other, it’s time to combine the two strategies. We call it a hybrid social media strategy.
Take a post that performed incredibly well organically and use it again. Run an ad using the same or similar content and target your current followers.
After it runs for a while and you have plenty of likes and positive comments, duplicate the ad and run it to a new audience.
Those positive comments and likes will transfer when you duplicate the ad. People you are trying to reach will notice the great engagement and perceive your content as valuable.
Another effective approach to gain new leads for your business is to use video ads. Produce a video that’s informative and helpful to your ideal customer. Give advice or tips on something your audience cares about—or highlight your company’s differentiators.
Target that video to people who are similar to your current followers. At the same time, post the video organically and pin it to the top of your page. If someone sees your ad and clicks to your page, they’ll see the same video. That consistency is a good thing. Plus, you want your current followers to engage with the video.
After the video ad runs its course, retarget people who watched more than 5 seconds of the video with a new ad. That group didn’t just scroll by, they took some time because they were likely interested.
If this retargeted group of people still hasn’t followed your account, there could be something holding them back. Consider creating a third ad that addresses those concerns to win them over.
Increase your ROI with social
Don’t let ever-changing social algorithms deter you. By developing a solid strategy, experimenting, and testing, you’ll learn what resonates with your audience and motivates them to engage.
Organic and paid social strategies are vital to the success of your social pages. Keep them working together, and you’ll see increased conversions, engagement, and ROI.
We’re here to support your social media strategy.