Social media today has become an integral part of the e-commerce ecosystem, driving growth and opportunities for businesses worldwide. As the Australian market experiences a remarkable surge in evolving online shopping behaviour, e-commerce companies must harness the power of social media platforms to build a robust online presence and connect with their target customers.
With an astounding social media penetration rate of 82.7%, Australia ranks among the top countries in the world for social media usage. In addition, the Australian consumer landscape experienced a significant shift in online shopping behaviour, with 30.3% of consumers now purchasing products through social media platforms. This rise in social commerce is ideal for e-commerce businesses to tap into the opportunities in social media and leverage it. With a robust social media strategy, businesses can stay on track with the changing preferences of Australian consumers, attract and engage potential customers and capitalise on the ever-expanding online market.
In this article, we will explore the essence of a social media strategy, best practices and ways to build a social media presence. Let’s delve into the world of social media strategies tailored to the unique demands and opportunities that await e-commerce companies “Down Under.”
What is a social media strategy?
|A social media strategy refers to a comprehensive plan that outlines how a business will use social media platforms to achieve its marketing and business objectives. It involves understanding the target audience, selecting the most effective platforms, and developing tailored content and engagement strategies.|
When crafting a social media strategy for the Australian e-commerce market, several crucial factors should be taken into account. First and foremost is understanding the demographic profile of the target audience. There are several factors to consider when studying this criterion. Refer to the checklist below to know what they are.
Develop customer personas based on the data collected and use them as a reference point when creating content and planning social media campaigns. Furthermore, consider employing social listening tools to identify trends, sentiments, and common discussions among your target customers. This will help you stay relevant and address their concerns effectively. Owing to their fleeting nature, it is of utmost vitality to stay abreast of the latest trends and developments within the Australian social media landscape.
Additionally, identifying the preferred platforms of your target audience is essential. According to recent statistics from OOSGA, the most popular social media platform in Australia is Facebook, with a staggering 18.63 million active users. Following closely is Instagram, with 14.03 million active users. WhatsApp, with 8.88 million followers, also presents opportunities to engage with a significant portion of the Australian population.
Moreover, remain aware of emerging platforms, changing user behaviours, and evolving content formats. Nevertheless, evaluate whether these newer content formats and platforms align with your business goal. Study competitors or analyse how this platform or format may be of use to you. By staying ahead of the curve, businesses can adapt their strategies and capture the attention of their target audience effectively.
All of these things, in tandem, can help your businesses create compelling content, foster meaningful engagement, and forge lasting connections with your customers — all through leveraging social media!
Platforms Popular Among the Australian Audience
The Australian audience is diverse, and the variety in social media platforms today matches that. There is something for everyone, and it can often seem like a mammoth task to narrow down which platform might work best for an e-commerce audience in Australia. From analysis and strategising to designing creatives and writing witty captions that match your business’s overall tone, working on social media tactics is time-consuming and a high-effort practice that involves several steps.
Therefore, it is important for e-commerce brands to carefully choose the platforms that align best with their target demographic and business objectives to ensure a tailored and effective social media strategy in the Australian market. We have listed some of these platforms below.
- Facebook – With approximately 18.63 million active users in Australia, Facebook remains the dominant social media platform in the country. Wide reach and a diverse user base aside, Facebook offers robust advertising options, allowing businesses to target specific demographics, engage with customers through organic posts, and leverage features like Facebook Shops to drive sales.
- Instagram – Boasting 14.03 million active users in Australia, Instagram is a visually-driven platform that resonates with younger audiences. Its emphasis on high-quality images and short-form videos makes it ideal for showcasing products. Moreover, utilising Instagram’s shoppable posts, stories, reels, and influencer collaborations can significantly boost brand visibility and e-commerce conversions.
- YouTube – As a video-centric platform, YouTube is home to over 17.55 million Australian users. It allows e-commerce brands the opportunity to create engaging video content, like product demonstrations, tutorials, or brand storytelling — all while letting brands target their desired audience effectively and drive website traffic. In addition, it also lets brands hold a repository of tutorials, guides, how-tos and even an introduction to the products that they can distribute as and when required.
- LinkedIn – LinkedIn has over 11 million users in Australia. It offers unique advantages for B2B e-commerce brands right from networking, industry insights, and thought leadership opportunities. E-commerce businesses targeting professionals, suppliers, or partners can employ LinkedIn to create relationships and distribute informative content. LinkedIn isn’t generally a tool that brings in customers; rather, it is crucial for driving visibility and humanising a brand through case studies, and customer success stories.
- TikTok – With over 350,000 brands using TikTok as a marketing tool, TikTok has established itself as one of the go-to platforms for businesses to drive sales.
Each of these platforms plays a vital role in an e-commerce brand’s success. By strategically utilising Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn, businesses can tap into the specific strengths and characteristics of each platform to engage their target audience, increase brand visibility, and drive conversions.
Steps to Create a robust social media strategy for e-commerce in Australia
Now that we have established the purpose and intent of an e-commerce social media strategy, let’s look at creating one potent enough to attract and draw in customers. Here are the steps to follow:
- Observe the Competition
Remain vigilant of your competitors’ social media strategies. Analyse their content, engagement tactics, and campaigns. Identify what works well for them and uncover any gaps in the market that you can leverage. Monitoring the competition can offer inspiration, aid in refining your approach to social media, and differentiate your brand in the Australian e-commerce market.
- Include Diverse Content Formats
Engage your audience through a variety of content formats. You can cater to different preferences and keep your social media feed dynamic and engaging by diversifying content and exploring different content formats. Some of the possibilities include:
- Behind-the-scenes content: Share glimpses of your office, production process, or team collaborations. This fosters transparency and authenticity, humanises your brand, establishes trust and creates a sense of exclusivity.
- Blog posts: Create checklists, how-to guides, and other informational pieces educating your audience about your niche. In addition, share industry insights or thought leadership pieces in the form of blogs on the website and LinkedIn blogs. Blog posts establish your expertise, provide value to your audience, and position your brand as a knowledgeable resource.
- Client testimonials: Feature client testimonials in the form of quotes, videos, or case studies. Testimonials act as social proof and validate the quality and reliability of your products or services, encouraging potential customers to make a purchase.
- Event updates and seasonality content: Keep your audience informed by sharing updates about upcoming events, conferences, or product launches. Provide sneak peeks, announcements, or live coverage to generate anticipation and create buzz around your brand. They allow your audience to be a part of the experience and foster engagement and brand loyalty.
- Team Member Profiles: Share your team member’s expertise, achievements, and contributions and highlight their unique skills. Showcase the people behind your e-commerce brand to make your company more relatable and approachable.
- User-Generated Content: User-generated content offers social proof – a crucial determinant of whether your business’s caterings are legitimate and of high standards. It serves as authentic testimonials and showcases real-life experiences with your products or services. It is a nurturer of community engagement and loyalty, as well as expanding your brand reach through the networks of your customers.
- Develop a Content Calendar
Plan your social media content in advance using a content calendar. Identify key dates, events, and campaigns to ensure timely and relevant posts. Map out content themes, topics, and hashtags to maintain consistency and alignment with your brand messaging. A content calendar helps you stay organised, save time, and maintain a consistent and cohesive social media presence.
Moreover, schedule your posts according to the best days and times for each social media platform. According to Hubspot’s study of over 1000 marketers, the best day to publish on any social media site is on Friday, between 12 PM to 3 PM and 6 PM to 9 PM.
On a more individual level, the following schedule may work best:
- Instagram: Saturdays, from mid to late evening and mid to late afternoon
- Facebook: Fridays and Saturdays, in the evening and mid-to-late afternoon
- Linkedin: Mondays, Wednesdays and Tuesdays, between 9 – 12 PM, 12 – 3 PM, or 3 – 6 PM.
- YouTube: Fridays and Saturdays, early mornings from 6 – 9 AM
- TikTok: Saturdays and Thursdays from 6 to 9 PM, 3 to 6 PM, and 12 to 3 PM
- Utilise Social Media Tools
Leverage social media tools to streamline and enhance your social media strategy. Utilise scheduling tools to plan and automate posts, ensuring a consistent and regular posting schedule. Take advantage of idea-generation tools to spark creativity and discover engaging post and content ideas. Leverage analytics tools to monitor performance, gain insights, and optimise your strategy. Use hashtag finder tools to identify relevant and trending hashtags that can expand your reach. By harnessing the power of these tools, you can maximise your social media efforts and achieve better results in the Australian e-commerce market.
Best Practices for an effective social media strategy
In addition to posting consistently, it is also imperative to post suitable content to maintain a strong presence across social media platforms. Therefore, when crafting a successful social media strategy for the Australian e-commerce market, it is vital to follow some best practices. Read along as we discuss some below.
Audit your existing social media standing
Before diving into a new social media strategy, it’s crucial to audit your existing social media presence. Conduct a thorough analysis of your current standing on various social media platforms. Evaluate the platforms that are performing well and those that need improvement. Consider factors such as engagement rates, follower growth, and conversion metrics and posts that may have performed well over the years. Moreover, dip your toes in competitor analysis and address gaps in the market. Also, consider audience feedback to regularise content that performs well.
Identify your target customer
To initiate the process of building an e-commerce social media strategy, begin by defining the demographic characteristics of your target customers, such as age, gender, and location. Moreover, explore their psychographic traits, such as interests, behaviours, values, and preferences, to help tailor your content and messaging to resonate with your audience. Conduct market research, and utilise surveys, focus groups, and customer interviews to gain deeper insights into your target customers.
Determine your social media success metrics
In order to measure the effectiveness of your social media strategy in the Australian e-commerce market, it’s important to determine your success metrics. Some of these include:
- Number of social media followers
- Ideal number of posts per week
- Content engagement levels
- Response to CTA (e.g., purchases made through social media)
- Conversion rates
In addition to this, use web analytics tools to track the amount of traffic driven to your e-commerce website from social media platforms. This metric helps you understand which social channels are driving the most traffic and assists in optimising your efforts accordingly.
Produce truly engaging content
Creating engaging content is crucial when building a successful social media strategy for the Australian e-commerce market. Centre your content on storytelling surrounding your brand, products, or customers. Furthermore, encourage your customers to share their experiences with your products or services by creating branded hashtags or running contests to establish social proof.
Prioritise visual variety to capture your audience’s attention. Incorporate a variety of visual content, such as product images, lifestyle photos, videos, and infographics. Experiment with different formats to cater to different preferences. In fact, above 24% of the Australian audience looks for content, including video format content, using the internet. Most importantly, provide value to your audience by sharing educational or informative content related to your industry. Establishing yourself as a knowledgeable resource helps build credibility among your audience.
Keep a close eye on your social performance
Assess the performance of your posts and campaigns, identify trends, patterns, and areas of improvement and adjust your strategy based on the insights. Accordingly, alter content formats, posting times, or messaging styles. Conduct A/B tests to compare the performance of different variations and identify the most effective strategies for your audience.
Moreover, conduct continuous competitor analysis to stay abreast of their content, engagement tactics, and campaigns to fine-tune your own approach and maintain a competitive edge in the Australian e-commerce market.
Social media is a major part of the marketing strategy for some of the biggest brands in the world. With the advent of new trends every day, you never know which format might allow your brand to go viral and find new customers. Therefore, it is of utmost importance to focus equal amounts of attention on your social media strategy.
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