How have businesses that rely mostly on traditional marketing managed to move into the digital arena? media update’s Nakedi Phala discusses the digital media channels that are at the forefront of helping brands reap marketing rewards.

Ordinarily you could rely on good revenue from ticket sales or by hosting live events that add to the brand experience. These types of events would be held at specific venues that people would attend.

Now, considering the current circumstances the world is in, brands need to find alternative ways to keep themselves in the marketing game. And one of the best ways to do this is by strengthening their digital marketing efforts.

Here’s how to up your social media game amid lockdown: 

1. Beef up your social content game

When planning your marketing strategy, you need to do it right! Revisit your strategy often and improve elements in it since it’s going to be your main way to promote your brand. 

Use curated content that can help keep your audience interested. This allows you to introduce new product launches, event news and information about your services into your strategy. Keep in mind, though, that these elements need to be explained in a way that isn’t going to confuse or frustrate your audiences.

For example, imagine you’re creating a short video clip explaining how football fans can support the team your brand is sponsoring. This film will also need to share important details of any hashtags they can follow, as well as information regarding any events coming up such as a fundraiser or otherwise to support the team.

Creating and using a hashtag before and during events will also enable the event to be visible on the trends map on social media. 

The use of influencers also comes in handy, since they have a huge following and valuable insights and opinions to offer your audience. Having them share information about your event activities could also get it some great exposure. 

And, don’t forget to share company news about the exciting things your brand will be doing. Share a PDF version of a press release onto social media platforms with a synopsis explaining the main points to gain further reach that stretches beyond publication exposure. 

Things to ask yourself:
Are your topics well researched?Does the content compliment your brand?Will it spark engagement?

2. Incorporate live streaming features

Social media streaming services such as Socialive, Facebook Live, Instagram Live YouTube Live and Periscope are affordable compared to paid television broadcast. 

For example, let’s say the Blue Bulls are playing a rugby match against the Sharks, which fans would have loved to attend but unfortunately, due to lockdown restrictions, they can’t. But, with a live stream of their favourite players getting ready for the game or interviews can boost engagement as viewers will be able to make comments during the event. 

Live streaming features on social media also give your brand leverage to reach an even bigger audience — one that could probably not fit in a stadium to catch the game. 

Things to ask yourself:
Is your camera quality on point? Is your internet spectrum great?Are you good with camera angles and shots?

3. Host social media competitions

Hosting events is costly but through social media you have the opportunity to trim some expenses, such as venue hire and travel costs. See? Running things virtually isn’t so bad after all …  

Running competitions on social media can also help you grow your following. This is because people are bound to follow your account in the hopes of being victorious and going home with some cash or a gift. 

Additionally, competitions can be survey-based, allowing you to learn from your audience and vice versa. You’ll be able to see exactly what your audience wants from your brand and, in turn, they’ll be able to tell you what they want more or less of.

Competitions are a good way to make use of giveaways of your branded products. For example, imagine your brand is a digital magazine that focuses on the marketing industry. You could then hold a competition where the winner can stand a chance to win a free six-month subscription as well as a crash course in content writing from an affiliated university or college. 

With a clever hook that can get audiences to be part of your competition, you’re indirectly building engagement for your brand and improving its social media presence.

Things to ask yourself:
Will the chosen hashtag do well? Will there be any key takeaways after Live tweeting? Will audiences remember you as the lead information sharer?

4. Start live tweeting

With audiences being unable to attend events during lockdown, live tweeting is a great way for your audience to follow the event as it unfolds from the comfort of their own home. 

One of the greatest benefits of this is that you’re sharing a message in real-time. This allows for  audience building as well as connecting with event attendees and partners who are actively engaging in the event. 

You will need someone who is a fast typer and who is simultaneously wary of grammar and spelling errors. Because it’s a live event, there won’t be time to go back to a previous tweet to delete and reshare an edited version. Or maybe Twitter should allow users to edit posts for errors? (hint hint) That would be great! 

Things to ask yourself:
Did you double check if links are directed to the correct platform?Did you keep the same voice and tone throughout?Did audiences like, retweet or comment?
Social media has been the go to place since lockdown started. Who knew it would last this long? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below. 

Weshu... oratile ditaba tjarena akere na? Refe maikutlo agago. 

Twitter has announced the return of its coveted verification badge — but the rules to getting that blue tick have become even stricter. Learn more about why Twitter’s blue badge is back — leaner and meaner.