BY ASHLEY ROBINSON, Finish Line® Horse Products Marketing Manager
It should be easy, right? Post an amazing photo of a horse and horse people will like it and the rest is history! Think again.
In the bustling world of social media, businesses can struggle connecting with their core audience. Due to the instant access to metrics, often we find ourselves second guessing brand strategy and leaving it in the dust for a fleeting moment of success.
This is where your social media strategy must be locked in and aligned with the core objective of your company. If your goal is to gain brand awareness through “on-brand” imagery and videos then perhaps you’re inching closer to the consistency of high engagement that can truly grow your brand. But if you’re looking for more conversions – you may have just missed the mark.
Ultimately social media is just that – SOCIAL. It is a place to call home in the chaos that is the internet. And no one likes to feel more at home than horse people. They thrive in the idea of community and sharing anything and everything about their horse. This is what makes it exceptionally tricky to navigate the when/how/whys of offering a solid social media strategy. Engagement doesn’t always transfer to conversions or long term success.
I’ve outlined some helpful methods to help you get ahead in the race that is social media in the horse industry.
- Content Calendar
- Plan 90 Days in Advance and leave room for hot, relevant industry topics like show news, sponsorships, etc
- Don’t overload your feed with one specific style of post. – create a media mix
- Call to Actions
- Does your post offer a clear Call To Action?
- Objective of posts
- What is their end result? Direct someone to a website to learn more, sell a product
- Don’t breathe your own exhaust – learn your audience. Taking advice from your internal team is especially important, but don’t let it alter your overall plan. This is extremely important – good branding takes building a foundation.
- Explore new trends – but be cautious – don’t fall victim to what’s hot if it doesn’t meet your needs.
- Contests - use them sparingly and only when you can gain an end result. Be cautious of creating transitional audience – not to be confused with transactional. These type of users are only looking for the next hot giveaway and rarely turn into loyal advocates of the brand.
- Engagement - discover your tone and frequency to answering questions, comments and even complaints. If you learn how to address each comment effectively, you can keep the dialog in your favor.
Whether you run a boarding facility, a horse show, own a stallion or just have a hobby farm you can benefit from adding some boundaries to your social media approach. This is a perfect outlet to gain ground when promoting your product and keeping people informed with a message you get to control.
Much like training a horse, continuity and frequency will always help you achieve lasting results! Best of luck!