The way a business presents itself on the different social media platforms is very important. This is true whether the platforms are used to increase exposure, connect with existing and potential customers or to improve the reputation of a brand or business. There are millions of people active on social media at any one time. The most effective approach is therefore to have presence on the different platforms. This also works to maintain a high ranking on search engines.
However, there is danger that things could get out of hand. You could have accounts on all the platforms but be unable to respond to what is being posted on all of them and this could potentially be damaging. Ideally, every post related to a brand or business should be responded to right away, especially inquiries and negative posts like customer complaints. If they are not handled right away, the situation can rapidly escalate to an inferno that burns the online reputation of a brand or business.
One complaint could attract a next one and another which will appear to be true if they remain unaddressed. Users who did not know about a brand or who liked it before could believe the posts from their fellow consumers.
The following are elements for success you should consider in creating or reevaluating your social media management strategy;
1.) Have you put up a description that clearly brings out the value proposition of your brand in one concise sentence apart from lengthy mission and vision statements?
This will draw in internet users or make them choose to pass.
2.) Is your business goal clear and the same across all the platforms?
Social media platforms can be used to achieve three goals: building brand enthusiasm, driving sales and building loyalty. Work on one at a time.
3.) Are you aware of the segments of your audience?
Different social media users have different relationships with your brand. Some have never heard of you, others are loyal fans, and you are a second choice to others. You need to have a strategy for the different segments of creating awareness, creating interest, driving action like purchasing or advocacy to get loyals to share about you. It is best to work on no more than two goals at a time.
4.) Are you aware of how your target audience uses social media?
Use the online tool known as the Forrester Social Technographics Ladder to determine the behavior of those you are targeting. You can also carry out a survey on your accounts with a view to establishing the patterns of those who associate with your brand as creators, joiners, critics, spectators or collectors.
5.) Have you combined everything about your brand into one intriguing aspect that you can sell to those you are targeting?
Figure out your X factor and bring it out with a bang on social media so that people will take notice and want to talk about it.
6.) Have you humanised your brand?
Your social media accounts should make you out to be the person that people come to with observations, questions and concerns.
7.) Do you have ways to measure the success of your social media accounts?
Establish at least three metrics for measuring your success. This will depend on your goals. For instance, an awareness campaign can be measured in terms of how many people sign up for a newsletter about your products or services or for samples. Loyalty can be measured by how many repeat purchases are made in a given period.
Marks of success
A successful social media profile will have the following elements:
- The name of your brand or business
- A username that should include your brand
- A profile picture
- A prominent link to your website or blog
- A brief bio that includes keywords
- Interests that should reflect the objectives of your business
- A brief background which should be unusual and inspiring
- Privacy settings
- Ongoing activity where you add friends and groups and post updates
- Promotion through business cards, your website and online advertisement
Getting it right
If you are just starting your brand or business, consider the factors above to create a strong social media presence that will get you noticed and get people talking. If you have been up and running for awhile, make some noise with a fresh approach according to the goals you wish to achieve.
Track your success and remain flexible about tweaking your approach according to the response and feedback you get from your targeted audience. In the end, you will get there.