6 Effective Mantras for Brands and Influencers to Grow & Ace Their Online Presence
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Who would have thought online world would become a way of life? Covid-19 gave our life a pause that none of us thought was possible! Work from home became a way of life and every brand, business, a person started turning towards social media for building a presence. While we might be stuck inside the vicinity of our houses, remaining relevant is a must. Because if you remain silent, you can easily be forgotten, that how ephemeral people's memory is. If you are not seen, you are easily replaceable.
During the time of ongoing crisis, growing your online presence has become vital. In order to ace the game, you need to know the maths to achieve it. Consumer behavior is dynamic and that's where an expert opinion matters. Entrepreneur India spoke to Harish Pednekar, a serial entrepreneur and reputed social media expert. With a clientele of over 500 clients in India and overseas, the entrepreneur has literally made an online brand presence and designed campaigns for small-scale brands, multinationals, influencers, politicians, businessmen, and celebrities.
"COVID-19 has shown the true potential of the digital world. The usage of Instagram has increased by almost 45-50%. For the brands and influencers, it’s a win-win situation as the users are spending most of their time-consuming content on the web. All in all, the true power of digital media is utilized in these tough times. E-commerce giant Flipkart recently joined hands with Bollywood actor Varun Dhawan to launch a stay-at-home reality show named Entertainer No.1 under Flipkart Originals. The brands are shifting their focus on consumer well-being and they are creating informative content to make people aware of the epidemic," he said.
One needs to understand that if you are in business, you are in the business of influence. Period! Being an expert in the field Pednekar understands what consumers want and how they absorb information. And considering we are at that phase where every brand and influencer need to be the king or the queen of the online platform, he tells us six effective ways of how we can achieve it.
Just like any vehicle needs fuel to run smoothly, social media needs authentic content for any page to do the wonders. But what does it mean?
Being authentic simply means to be communicative and not mislead the audience.
"Many a time, influencers post content which might be inauthentic for their followers which can lead to losing interest as they won’t appreciate such content. The content should be simple to understand and not against any brand or the influencer," he explains.
Define Your Niche
Social media is all about out of the box ideas. Imitating someone or duplicating the same content with different tastes does not sustain in the long run. But how do you do that?
Don’t follow the herd, instead make your own way by bringing something new to the table.
"If you are an influencer or have a brand, focus on the niche, or at the factors which make you stand out of the crowd. For instance, Jay Shetty is a renowned internet personality known for creating motivational content whose videos have a lasting impact on people. If he starts creating funny vines, people might not accept him as he has defined his niche as a motivational speaker," he said.
Engagement Posts & Relationship Building
Engaging with your followers is another smart tactic to build a strong online presence over the internet. Build a relationship with them.
"As a brand, respond thoughtfully to the comments and questions asked by them. As an influencer, interact with your followers through live sessions. It will make them feel engaged and a part of your story. Besides this, you can ask the followers questions through your posts," said Pednekar.
For example, an influencer can share a post talking about how he or she is spending the quarantine time in the lockdown.
"They can ask the followers about their activity during the quarantine. This will help in building engagement on social media," he said
Another important aspect is to build relationships and not just seek followers. Make them feel they are needed and they are as important as your family is to you. After all, they are your virtual family.
"Influencers should connect to their followers by Instagram live sessions and interact with them frequently. Last but not the least, be super active on social media by creating the posts daily or once in two days," he adds.
Set Your Target Audience
In content creation, the first rule is to set your target audience. Understand what kind of content the target audience wants to consume. For any brand or the content creator, knowing the right target audience is the key.
"For a brand or from the influencer’s perspective, if your target audience is the children aging from 8 to 12 years and if you create adult content, they won’t adapt to the content as they are not aware of it. The target audience is not just defined by age. Demography plays a key role in identifying the target audience," he said.
Aim for Organic Growth
For any influencer or brand, popularity on social media is what matters the most. In this situation, don’t get attracted to buy followers who are fake. Buying fake followers isn’t worth it if it is noticeable to the end-users. Thinking why?
"Detecting fake followers is very easy which anyone can make out by the ratio of followers and average likes on the posts. Instagram bots hamper the online reputation of the influencer or brand in such a way that many genuine followers lost their interest from the page. At times, buying followers may go against the policies of Instagram due to which the account may get permanently disabled," highlights Pednekar.
Different Content for Different Social Media Platforms
By far the smartest move for any brand and the influencer is to utilize every social media platform effectively. You must make sure to use different content for different social media platforms. This might sound difficult but it is essential.
"TikTok is the most popular app in India right now. However, there are many other apps like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. The content created on every platform can be similar, but the message should reach to the audience in a way as per their understanding. For example, if a brand launches a new product, its communication strategy for Twitter and TikTok might be different. Twitter is generally used by the intellectuals whereas TikTok is majorly used by the people of rural areas and of tier II and tier III cities," he explains.
Believe it or not but this is the time when brands and influencers can easily adapt to the transition and build a strong presence. All brands and influencers need to do is make the best use of online existence by keeping an eye on the latest market trends.