Social media can be an extremely powerful tool for marketing when used effectively.
Businesses have taken note and more and more of them are turning to social media to promote their products and services. In fact, a 2015 study by the Social Media Examiner found that 92% of marketers consider social media important to their businesses.
However, somewhere down the line it seems many businesses have lost sight of one major component of social media: being social.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines social media as:
Forms of electronic communication (as Web sites for social networking and microblogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content (as videos).
To be successful, businesses need to shift their focus back to the essence of social media- creating online communities.
It is through the building of trust and nurturing of relationships that your online community will grow and an increase in business will follow naturally.
Now in case all that time spent behind the computer has you scratching your head about how to be social on social media, you just need to picture yourself at a dinner party…
At a dinner party, who are you most interested in having a conversation with? Which guest is the most obnoxious? What kind of conversations do you enjoy? What questions do you ask and which ones do you know how to answer?
Take those same questions and look at them through your business lens. Which type of guest is your business? The social butterfly who’s able to have an engaging conversation and provide solutions based on their expertise? Or the guest who only talks about him or herself and doesn’t listen to what anyone else is saying?
To put the social back in your business’s social media strategy, here are a few pointers:
Find people with common interests:
- use relevant hashtags
- join groups
- build lists
- create targeted ads and boosted posts
- Have genuine conversations:
- comment on other people’s content
- ask questions
- respond to comments and questions
Be personable and approachable:
- show the human aspect behind the business
- create an environment that encourages conversation
- skip the corporate-speak
- use plain language and a conversational tone
- Share interesting and relevant content
- share behind-the-scenes, how-tos and expert tips
- don’t just sell, sell, sell
- Thank people (a thank you goes a long way!)
thank people for liking your page, for leaving a positive review, for sharing your content, etc
By approaching your business’s social media presence in the same way you would a real life social situation, you’ll not only see your community grow, but you’ll also see that return on investment you’ve been looking for.
Which social actions do you take to engage with your clients or consumers?
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