Ace Your Social Media Game With These Pro-Tips
In a time when major brands have built entire social media teams and when a single tweet sparks national debates – it’s clear that social media is a powerful tool.
When managed well, it can attract new customers and strengthen your relationship with old customers. But it’s not just a matter of posting how many ads there are for your product. It’s about creating posts that create awareness, humanize your brand, and engage your followers and the public at large.
According to Social Media Examiner, more than half of marketers who have used social media for at least two years say it has helped them improve sales. Here’s how to optimize your efforts:
KEEP IN SOME TIME
Not a lot of time, but some. As Examiner reports, 66 percent of marketers realize lead-generation benefits when spending just six hours a week. However you work during those hours, make sure to post frequently and consistently.
PUBLISH YOUR POSTS IN APPROPRIATE OUTLETS
Your audience doesn’t have to be the same on LinkedIn as it is on Facebook. Know who is viewing what and distribute your posts accordingly.
If you run a birthday cake business, you’ll want to share with professional party planners, but later on with parents. Also, some formats are better suited to certain outlets than others—for example, create a webinar for YouTube; Tweet about it on Twitter; And share a cool infographic from the webinar on Facebook.
As noted in a UFSocial article, visual content is 40 times more likely to be shared on social media than other types of
content. So whatever you say, show it—whether it’s a new product you’re launching, a new location you’re opening, your
employees using your product during off-hours, or an infographic from your latest customer survey.
MAKE YOUR FOLLOWERS FEEL LIKE INSIDERS
Share inspiration boards that help make your new product happen. Take behind-the-scenes images from a photo shoot for your latest ad campaign. Show pictures of the seller’s visit (for example, images of the farm that supplies your product’s ingredients).
SHOWCASE THE PEOPLE BEHIND YOUR BRAND
Include a playful Q&A with the team lead, mixing both business and personal, from what she likes most about the product to what kind of snacks fueled the team while they spent long days working on it. Or if your team participates in a volunteer event, tell followers about it and include a shot of you all in action. People have built relationships, so help them put a face—or faces—to your name.
KNOW THAT IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT YOU (OR YOUR BRAND)
It’s also about what you believe and who you associate with. Let followers know you’re not living in a vacuum: so post on topics that align with your brand’s mission. For example, if you’re a sports-apparel brand, you might post a newspaper story about the winner of the New York Marathon and send a congratulatory note. If you consult on children’s education, you can post an article about a new children’s book you’re excited about.
SHARE OTHER PEOPLE’S POSTS
For the reasons mentioned above, you may retweet or share posts from other brands or people you trust. Going back to the previous sports apparel brand example, you might share a smart tweet from an athlete you admire or a university post. New discoveries in exercise science.
Call for new product suggestions. Ask them to share an image that shows their favorite interaction with your brand. The more you engage and they engage back, the stronger the bond you form.
PREPARE FOR THE RESPECTIVE HOLIDAYS
If you have a party-supply site, have something to say about the holidays that people can visit you (New Year’s Eve, St.Patrick’s Day).
If you’re a dietitian, you might want to give a series of tips once a week during February (Heart Health Month). By being timely, you are more apt to convert followers into customers.
RESPOND TO YOUR FOLLOWERS
Acknowledge comments directed at you or your brand, whether they’re positive or negative. Did someone post a photo of you winning a race wearing tank tops you made? Respond with heartfelt congratulations. Does someone tweet at you with a complaint? Tweet back and get it right so you show customers and all your followers that you care.
According to the Medalia Institute, when hotels responded to more than 50 percent of their social media reviews, their year-over-year occupancy rate increased by 6.4 percentage points over a 12-month period—double the rate of hotels that ignored social media reviews.