No matter what stage you are with business, there’s always a new way to develop your social media. Those in the USA spend an average of 2.7 hours a day on their social media accounts and you want to make sure you’re getting proper publicity (wearesocial.net). Some ways you can do this are by keeping your accounts updated, using unique hashtags and personally connecting with your audience.
Personal Association vs Number of Followers
It might be your goal to get as many followers as possible, but what really matters is if you can get them to stay followers. You may be posting on your social media regularly, but aren’t seeing an increase in conversions. This could be because your audience isn’t relating to your posts.
Say you own a restaurant and you always post about food. Would you have a genuine interest toward the product being sold if it was marketed towards yourself? Think about why someone would want to visit your restaurant. Graduation is just around the corner, which is a huge accomplishment for proud parents. Now that’s something I might go to a restaurant for! What if there weren’t anything to celebrate this month? Make up your own event! A great example is how 7-Eleven has a free Slurpee day, while Tropical Smoothie gives out free drinks to those who wear flip-flops on National Flip-Flip day. Display your brand how you believe it to be and the right audience will support you.
Share Trending Content
Promoting your business is important, but you can make your posts more interesting by sharing different news in the industry. Say you own a coffee shop and you hear about this new type of French press. You might not use it at your shop, but your coffee loving followers are likely to share that photo. The more likes, shares and reposts, the more traffic it will drive to your page. Of course, not everything has to be about business. Listen to the news on your drive to work and find out what’s going on around you. Posting that viral video of the dancing dog will build a more personal connection with your audience and make you look more than just another brand.
Brand Your Company with Unique Hashtags
Everyone knows how to use hashtags, but how can it make your business stand out? Instead of using a common hashtag like #coffee, typing a unique one like your company name allows you and your followers to find each other directly. This is especially useful when informing the public about promotions and checking how many people are actually posting with the unique hashtags.
Another example is #NeginNewYork, used by a popular fashion blogger named Negin Mirsalehi. This blogger travels a lot, so many of her hashtags differ and include #NeginMilan, #NeginDubai and even #NeginCyra for photos that include her niece. This goes to show that hashtags go far more into branding than you might have previously thought.
Aside from using common words for a higher SEO ranking, unique hashtags provide a similar result. If you go to Google and look up #The100DayProject, you’ll get a long list of results that lead to the same exact project. Hashtags like #MotivationalMonday and #WisdomWednesday are great in that they are short and to the point, however everyone from accounting firms to breast cancer organizations use those hashtags. Your goal as a business is not to blend in with the rest, but to show potential clients what makes your company special. Creating unique hashtags are a challenge, but they will definitely make your business stand out.
Host and Participate in Chats
Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter allow you to open a conversation between your followers through LiveChat and TweetChat. These were created to reach a larger audience instead of replying to messages one at a time, making it easier for you to connect with those interested in your business. Not only does this make it effortless in reaching your followers, but it also helps in expanding your audience and build relationships with influencers who have similar interests.
Before hosting your own chat, it’s important to understand how they work. Participate in chats such as #SEOTalk or #SocialCafe to get an insight on what others in your industry have to say about SEO and social media marketing. If you’re interested in other topics, try visiting ChatSalad.com to see what upcoming chats are available.
When you’re ready to host a chat, choose a hashtag that is short, unique and easy to remember. Think of it as an event. Before the party happens, you have to invite guests. Make it public on your social media accounts that you’re hosting a chat on Wednesday at 7pm. Keeping a consistent schedule also helps, since participants will know exactly what day and time you’re hosting the chat.
On the day of the event, introduce yourself and encourage members to get involved. Let them know how long the chat will last to give an idea of when they can ask questions. Like any other event, come prepared. Have an outline of what you’d like to cover to help keep yourself on topic and within the timeframe. Before ending the chat, let everyone know when the next one will be held. If you made a new connection, great! Keep in touch and tweet hello and continue to build on that relationship.
Connect with Leading Industry Professionals
Keeping in touch with influencers can help you rise to the top. Building relationships with well-known people in your industry and getting them to genuinely like your company will cause your network and views to blend with theirs, resulting in better outcomes. Like, comment or share their posts. They’ll be pleased to know that you’ve benefitted from the information.
You might be wondering what types of influencers I’m talking about and how you can meet them. The easiest and most common way would be through the business networking site, LinkedIn. If you own a business, you might want to follow influencers under “Entrepreneurship and Small Business,” such as Jeff Haden. These types of influencers will be able to share valuable information to improve your business. Meanwhile if you’re have a niche you’re interested in, such as being a female entrepreneur or supporting equality between men and women, “Professional Women” might be the right for you. On the other hand, if you have helpful advice you’d like to share with others, you could become an influencer yourself.
Other options to connect with industry professionals could be through MeetUp.com or joining organizations that are specific to your industry. As a designer, I am a member of AIGA and the Art Director’s Club. Research what organizations are available for your trade to find out about different events you can attend, who the speakers will be and build your network with other talented professionals.
Set Goals and Follow Them
By setting goals, I don’t mean just a checklist. Each of your social media channels can have different types of audiences. If you were a company that sells fashionable clothing, you might have a higher number of followers for shoes on Twitter and a lower rate on Instagram. Once you figure out what type of followers you have, you can start setting achievable goals. It’s always great to aim high, but it’s even better to reach those goals. These need to be specific, measurable and obtainable. Instead of setting a vague goal like, “get more followers,” try making a personal hashtag and have others post using it 10 times in a week.
One of the main aspects you can focus on is whether you’ll have multiples posts that will differ from social media platforms or having the same posts for each one. For example, Twitter could be focused on your company’s conversions, while Instagram is geared toward brand acknowledgement. The other option would be to have a single post that will appear on all of your social media profiles, depending on what your company is trying to achieve.To find out what social media platform is right for your goals, continue reading about what separates Facebook, Twitter and Instagram from one another. Facebook is the most popular platform with the most diverse demographic, which makes it great for brand awareness in any type of business. On the other hand, Twitter is the second most well-known platform with 46 percent of daily users. This is a strong platform for marketing, news, SaaS and sports businesses, especially when used to promote deals and contests. Finally, we have Instagram, which is most effective for businesses with high usage of images, such as design, fashion and food related industries.
Get Rid of Social Media You Don’t Use
It’s great to have different types of social media, except when you’re not keeping it up to date. When people follow pages, it’s usually to get updates about a business or product. If you have an account that you don’t use, it’s best to get rid of it and focus on the ones that you do use. That way you can spend more time focusing on the followers you already have and build an even stronger brand.
Here is a quick guide to social media posting:
- Blog 2 times per week
- Facebook 2 times per day
- Instagram 2 times per day
- LinkedIn 1 time per day
- Twitter 3 times per day
These guidelines will help you decide to either make the most out of social media your business currently uses or set a clear path to new goals.
Update Your Account Information
When was the last time you updated your social media profiles? Aside from keeping your content consistent, it’s essential to keep your information updated. Your company name, description and location are some of the key information potential visitors will be looking for first. Set a reminder to check your social media profile every month or so and update them. Don’t neglect these updates or leave them blank; the right information might even help drive traffic to that page.
If a potential customer finds wrong information, such as your previous location, he or she might feel frustrated after driving all the way there and realizing you’re now located at the opposite side of town. That person might even find it to be such a hassle that he/she would rather not do business with you. Imagine how much worse a completely outdated profile could affect your company.