It’s certainly no secret that mobile is the next frontier of internet marketing. More than half of U.S. adults now have smartphones, and more than a third have tablets. Over the next few years, analysts say, the bulk of internet usage will shift from desktop and laptop to mobile, and any businesses that don’t shift with the times will get left behind. Mobile is the future.
It’s critical, then, to come up with a mobile social media strategy that will keep your business not only relevant and top-of-mind to smartphone and tablet users but also user-friendly. There’s nothing more frustrating to potential customers than trying to interact with companies that are not mobile-optimized.
Here are three critical mobile social media marketing tips that will keep your audience happy and engaged.
Make Your Blog Mobile-Friendly
Blogs are a key part of social media. They help drive conversation, they allow you to interact with potential customers, and they allow you a chance to address issues and industry developments in-depth in real time. If your blog is not optimized for mobile, you’ll miss out on lots of valuable interaction and you’ll frustrate your readers. Here are four ways you can improve your mobile blog:
- Hire a developer to move your site to a responsive web design. This will ensure that no matter where your readers are coming from, either desktop or mobile, they will get the best browsing experience.
- Think about how people are using your blog and design accordingly. Do people see your product on the street, look up your web site on their mobile device, and then stumble onto the blog? Or is your blog the sort of must-read industry resource that ends up in people’s blog reader? Make changes based on your audience and what their needs are.
- Don’t just test your mobile blog design with your own eyes. Use free online tools to see if you’ve optimized it correctly, so that you don’t miss any traffic or comments.
- Make sure your mobile blog loads quickly. If people have little patience with long load times on desktop sites, they have even less with mobile sites. The optimal amount of time is 4 seconds or, preferably, less.
How to do it:
- Include fewer files to download.
- Use smaller images.
- Employ client-side processing.
Do Social Media on the Fly
Social media has become an increasingly mobile pursuit. Sixty-four percent of U.S. adults use mobile social media daily, and nearly all of Pinterest and Twitter users are accessing the sites each day on their smartphones and tablets.
Perhaps a few years ago you could afford to sit down at your computer once a day and take care of all social media needs, but not anymore. These days it’s essential to make social media marketing part of your hourly routine so that you answer questions and address concerns in a timely manner. Here are five ways you can improve the way you manage social media on the go:
- Divvy up responsibilities. If you have more than one employee, and those employees are trustworthy, make everyone in charge of checking in on social media at a certain time of day so that you’re not sucked into the Twitter vortex for mass portions of your day. Put procedures in place for bringing big issues to the appropriate person’s attention.
- Address concerns immediately, even if you’re just sending a message saying you’re planning to investigate. People who make queries on mobile social media expect their issues to be dealt with immediately.
- Use mobile programs that allow you to monitor all of your social feeds together. It’s too time consuming to check in on each one individually. Whether you try Hootsuite or a social search and monitoring tool like Mention, make sure you’re using your time efficiently.
- Take advantage of mobile’s flexibility. A site like Instagram allows you to document that seminar you’re hosting or the conference you’re putting on with fun photos. Connect with people by showing what your day has been like.
- Accept that you’re always on the job. It may be 11 p.m. at night, but if you see a rant on your Yelp page from an unhappy customer, it’s best to address it now rather than waiting until morning, at which point more people may have seen it.
Pay Attention to Location
The biggest advantage to reaching people via their mobile devices is that they’re on the go. You’ve got a great shot at getting them into your store or convincing them to check out a particular service if you target them by their location via social media.
Here are three ways to go about that:
- Test out Foursquare ads. Foursquare serves up ads based on location. Say you’re a restaurant located on Second Street; if someone is strolling down Second Street, that’s when your ad will come up. Location-based ads are one of the best ways to grab attention on social media, and it’s obviously something that desktop computers can’t offer.
- Use Twitter location services to help you target your tweets by area. It’s a waste of time to communicate with people who will never use your services. By targeting potential customers by their mobile devices and serving up relevant tweets, there’s a greater chance you’ll make a sale.
- Be open to new ideas. Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest aren’t the only social networks out there. Experiment with new, location-based tools and sites, such as Localmind, which allows businesses to get more involved in their local community via mobile.
Be Consistent and Use Best Practices
Mobile will be dominating the social media conversation for years to come, so the sooner you begin adopting best practices, the farther ahead of the curve your business will be. Make sure to reassess your approach regularly, and build on ideas that work while purging those that don’t. Be especially aware of new products and services that could make your job easier, because mobile and social media both change at a rapid rate.