You’ve begun to invest in social media.
You’re creating a strategy, but everything is still very much trial and error. Yet, having spent hours of channeling your energy into research and social media management, it is proving to be less fruitful than you imagined.
So… what’s going wrong? Where can we improve? How do we get social media right?
It begins by stand out from the noise on. Every second, Twitter alone produces 5,700 tweets, Pinterest users pin 3,400 images and Instagram reaches more that 28,000*. For more of these statistics see: The Internet in Real-Time. With this flood of content being produced, standing out and having a voice is becoming more of a challenge.
But, it’s far from impossible. Here are 10 tips to get you started on social media. Start implementing these, and you’ll see how much your social presence improves.
SHARE Content That Resolves an Issue
People on social media are hungry. Hungry for knowledge. One of the best ways to develop your brand’s reputation and establish yourself as a reliable voice is to provide them with valuable content.
Make sure that you’re listening to your online community and using your analytics to assess the type of content that really resonates with you audience. More than anything, try to provide them with content that resolves an ongoing issue.
Tools such as Paper.li & Scoop.it can help you to curate content from other sources which takes the pressure off of constantly producing your own. Remember, never publish content for the sake of it. Make sure that it’s relevant, actionable and up-to-date.
One of the most effective ways of building a loyal following is to provide people with useful information with no strings attached. Give them a reason to reach out to you and come back for more.
Have An Opinion
There’s nothing better than knowing that behind each account is a real person. When you offer an opinion on a piece of content, industry news or debate, you provide your audience with a fresh, new perspective.
This also brings to light that the brand also has a personality. You’re much more likely to generate conversations and engagement by being personal and professional that being stiff and robotic!
Capture Attention With Imagery
We are very visual creatures. If you want people to be drawn to your profiles and content, incorporate imagery to catch their attention.
There are so many different types you can use. From GIFs to infographics, charts, videos, quotes and behind the scenes images of your business in action. Make sure that all of your visuals correlate with the information that you’re publishing. Don’t suck them in with a false impression!
If you need some inspiration there are plenty of brands that have adopted and executed visual marketing strategy exceptionally well. Nike & Lululemon are great examples of imagery that portrays the brand message:
— Nike (@Nike) June 21, 2014
Create a Social Media Schedule & Calendar
Creating amazing content is the first step. The second is to make sure that people see it. There’s nothing worse that publishing content that then gets lost in the online abyss. This means that timing is everything. There are some great tools like SocialBro and RightRelevance that show you where your followers are located. Once you know what time zones the bulk of your audience exists in, you’re one step closer to creating a schedule. SocialBro actually generates a ‘Best time to Tweet’ report that you can upload to other social media schedulers such as HootSuite & Buffer.
Write Headlines That Draw People in
— SocialMedia Examiner (@SMExaminer) August 28, 2015
Headlines can be the difference between your content being scrolled past and shared, virally. There is no one size fits all approach to writing headlines, but there are some basic rules:
- demonstrate value with numbers
- use industry questions or customer issues
- find content that has grabbed your attention as inspiration
If you want people to engage with your posts, remember that you have to make is worth their while. Make sure they know why this content will be valuable in the headline.
Leverage Twitter: Generate Traffic to Your Blog
On average, about 35% of my blog traffic comes from Twitter alone. It is one of the best social media platforms for engagement and should definitely be used to your advantage. Increase your visibility by:
- Including hashtags that are relevant to your post. Identify the leading hashtags that are used in your industry and make sure that you’re also using them to listen out for industry trends. There are some great tools like RiteTag & TagBoard.
- Tweet your latest blog posts several times. Remember that your followers may be spread out across several time zones and you want to reach as many of them as possible.
Complete Your Social Profile
This may seem simple, but it is also one of the many forgotten rules of social media management. Your profile is your selling point. This is an opportunity to tell people exactly what you have to offer, your interests, passions and links to other social media accounts.
Of all social media platforms, LinkedIn tends to be the most overlooked. It’s more than an online resume, it is a chance to share your story. Here’s an article to help you optimize your LinkedIn: 9 Steps to Creating an Amazing LinkedIn Profile.
Monitor Your Reputation
Online reputation management can be quite a task. This, however, is one of the most important aspects of your strategy.
By measuring sentiment values and staying in tune with what others associate with your brand, you can respond to any issues promptly. You can also spend some time thanking your fans! Some great tools for this: Google Alerts, Mention, and Hootsuite.
Despite what many people think, social media is not a megaphone to broadcast a brand’s achievements. It does give you a chance to connect with people scattered across the globe and build genuine relationships with them.
This all starts with a conversation. You have to be prepared to talk to people and respond to their questions. When the time is right, these conversations can be taken offline and developed into leads or even collaborations.
Be Human & Authentic
People use social media to… well, be social! Even though you’re restricted to communicating with one another via text, doesn’t mean that you can’t be personal and real. To have a personality is to be authentic, and people really to take to authenticity.
Authenticity is the truth of your actions. It does not mean disclosing everything about yourself. What it really means is making sure that your online and offline personas correlate.
By doing so, you will also begin to attract the right people that may share your interests and way of thinking.
Social media can be incredibly rewarding. When managed effectively, you open the door to many opportunities. It may require a bit of hard work, but nothing good is meant to come easy!
Are you ready to put all of this into action?
Even better, do you have any suggestions? Leave a comment below!