LUBA Business Tips: Social Media
Social Media: Social Media is here to stay and it has become a very powerful tool to communicate personally and professionally.
Sharing information on web-based channels like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube allows the world to connect in ways never imagined. Social media, coupled with smartphones, has engaged the world in instant news and information sharing.
Just like other internal and external communications vehicles, such as newsletters like the one you’re reading now, it’s important to understand your target audience and consider who might be viewing/reading your channels. Sharing on social media is important, but a company must develop a voice and a strategic method for sharing without oversharing. Your competitors, and even disgruntled customers, are watching. Social media should be handled with brand honesty and extreme discretion. Although social media can absorb an intense amount of resources to keep up with the content demand, it can also become a strategic partner that allows you to talk directly to your audience and sell your businesses’ brand. It’s important when developing a social media plan to earmark funds to promote strategic posts that drive particular service lines or promotions.
WHO’S WHO: GET TO KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
Getting to know who follows or makes up your social media’s viewership is an important part of creating content that resonates and inspires engagement. Not all social media platforms attract the same demographics, so do research to determine what platforms are commonly used among your target audience. Use that data to your advantage. After all, social media marketing is all about forming relationships that ensure growth and progression and meeting your customers where they are.
Pro Tip: Utilize a software like Hootsuite which allows you to bulk schedule posts across your social media channels. Create a content calendar and plan ahead.
NOT ALL CONTENT IS CREATED EQUAL
When it comes to choosing what you post, make sure you’re captivating your audience by creating content that is eye-catching and memorable. Videos go a long way to inform, but they are also a great way to make your brand relatable and create an emotional connection. When using stand-alone graphics, nice pictures are always favorable, but adding a bit of animation or motion can take those graphics to the next level. Be sure to pay attention to the word count in your posts. Get your message across in a clear and concise way using short and impactful phrases or sentences.
Pro Tip: Use hashtags in your posts. Many people subscribe and follow hashtags of interest.
POST ENGAGEMENT: LIKES, SHARES, AND COMMENTS
Posting facts, figures, and leading industry news is important, but do it in a way that creates buzz and inspires your followers to participate in your commentary. Ask questions, encourage feedback, and incentivize your audience by asking them to comment on your posts. Many businesses find success in this by offering giveaways and promotions in exchange for “likes” and shares.
Pro Tip: Monitor your comment sections closely. Along with positive engagement can also come negative. When you find unsavory comments, be sure to address them immediately and in a professional and respectful way.
- Keep posts short and sweet. While Twitter allows 280 characters, posts with less than 100 characters get more engagement.
- Answer questions and respond to posts: Your page is not a walled-up city. Respond to followers and be personal.
- Always be kind and respectful.
- Provide helpful links: Be sure to help educate your followers, not just promote things.
- Post Photos: Post pictures of you and your coworkers (with permission). Users love to see people they recognize.
- Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram allow individuals to “tag” a post by attaching a searchable “hashtag” to a post. You add these tags to the end of your post’s subject matter.
- Over post – Only post as often as you need to get good engagement.
- Excessively self-promote: Go by the 90/10 rule: 90% of your posts should be fun and informative, 10% can be promotion.
- Use bad grammar – Double-check for grammar errors or misspelled words in your posts.
- Overshare – Don’t post rants or gripe about employees or customers.
- Respond hastily. Remember your messages are public. Carefully crafted and correct responses are vital.
Potential Social Media Sharing Opportunities
- Company events
- Grand openings (event promotions)
- Employee milestones
- New job listings in your area
- Welcome messages to new team members
- Hiring announcements
- Official company accomplishments
- Industry tips and useful information
- Official company news