Have you ever had the following questions: Pinterest or Tumblr? Facebook or LinkedIn? Which one is best for my business?
The options seem limitless.
Being involved in social media today can be overwhelming, intimidating, and time consuming.
Here are three tips on how to create a successful social media strategy that increases your bottom line, conveys your values, and strengthens your online reputation:
Coordinate Your Social Media Efforts
When I first started dabbling in social media, I decided I was going to be everywhere, all the time, all at once. About two weeks later, and only a few likes, connections, and pings I realized that my effort was futile. Reflecting back, I see that social media “bombing” was not the answer. The answer: Planning.
Planning your social media posts and content is paramount for success on any social media platform. When you plan your content you are able to offer your followers more. With a little extra planning you can create a series that features some of your customers and the ways they creatively use your product and service. By planning, you give yourself more flexibility as well; such as by developing contests that offer freebies from companies that you partner with. Coordinating your social media efforts with what your company is doing via your website and blog will ensure that your company message is succinct in your messaging, which improves your value to your customers.
Help Your Followers
The best way to ensure that your social media strategy is successful is to craft it in such a way that it helps you be of better service to your customers rather than pushing your own agenda and products. A simple way to do this is to update your audience on other things in the near future that your company plans on offering customers for their loyalty, or announce that you are giving away a valuable e-book that will assist them in making more informed buying decisions. When you help your followers you are providing them with free resources that communicate the benefits of using your products as well as your commitment to seeing their problems solved.
Be Vibrant and Constant
Every company that participates on a social media platform should carve out a few hours to dedicate to each platform a week – and might I add here, purposeful hours. Don’t just do something to say you’ve done it. I will quote the old adage: Anything worth doing is worth doing well. Starbucks is a master of promotion with visual appeal - you can almost taste and smell fresh coffee and snacks.
Providing intriguing and relevant links and commenting on others’ links is a surefire way to show your community and followers that you are just a click away. Post weekly (at the bare minimum) and search the Web for trending topics; then tie them into your business. Have you ever been to a website and noticed that their last blog entry was from before Christmas of last year? That sends the wrong message.
Research your industry trends and reach out to complementing companies on a regular basis. Providing relevant content, entertaining links to partners, and commenting on your fans’ status updates is a unique and creative way to ensure that your business’s life online has a steady heartbeat.