How to Effectively Use Social Media
Written by: Violette de Ayala, CEO & Founder of Femfessionals
Social media is one of the fastest and least expensive methods to grow your business and stay connected to current and potential clients. Your messages should be well thought out and with the purpose of connecting to a growing base of followers. Think before you even Retweet, as every post is your voice to customers. Whether you are already creating content on social media or need a boost to get more traction with engagement, below are some tips to get your brand and message on point or growing with a deeper connection to your clients. Every follower you have, is a potential client or a repeat set of business. Your opportunity to connect with them is perhaps the direct correlation to new business.
- INTENTION: What is your intention? Above just increasing your base of followers, and increasing engagement, what is your intention and purpose with your social media activity? What aspects of your business do you want to share? What kind of expert are you looking to be branded? This question will set the tone of your social media voice and help you to communicate clearly with your clients.
- KNOWING YOUR CLIENTS: What do you want to share that falls in line with your business and best resembles your brand and would be of importance to your clients/followers? Sharing content via social media is a great asset to share all things about your business. If you are a marketing consultant, you might want to share content with tips on the importance of creating marketing based on demographics. A marketing consultant could share knowledge that targets the potential customer. What is your potential client reading and watching? What information would assist their business and ultimately lead them to hire you? This information is great to know and understand to further enrich your connection to your clients.
- RESPONSE TIME: Every RT and interaction should receive a response. Your response can be a simple “like” or a Quote RT, which is my favorite as it helps others keep in the loop with the current conversation. If it’s someone singing praises, respond authentically in appreciation of his or her post. A positive message is incredibly powerful as it serves as a testimony to your work and reputation leading others to select your business.
- MESSY POSTS: If someone responds negatively, respond immediately if possible [if it’s a legitimate issue]. Address his or her concerns and remember the world is watching. Your customer service is now being tested and this will either be a response to help your business grow, or hurt your business and keep others away. There are segments of trolls out there just looking for a fight and not having ever used your business. Those you can ignore and generally will go away. Last year we had two negative reviews on Facebook which effected our near perfect 5-star rating of positivity. We thought of addressing them but since these two men had never attended one of our events, or joined our community, we felt it best to leave it be. One was also semi-naked in the profile pic, so his unprofessionalism was apparent. We posted the negative review and many in our community then posted positive reviews about our business to help us get back to our 5-star rating. It worked out in our favor.
- REVIEW: Review what’s working so you can better fit your clients’ needs and improve your connection to them. Many of the social media platforms offer free analytics of accounts. Facebook and Twitter have great tools to assist in learning more about your followers and their engagement. Study the numbers and see what is getting the most engagement based on specific posts. This will help you learn more about them, what they like and are looking to read to benefit their lives. In the future you can increase posts that seem to connect with them more deeply based on the history of past posts. Set a specific day of the week to review your posts and continuously tweak to get more engagement. The more engaged your followers are, the more they will look for your posts, recommend your account to follow and eventually help to grow your business.
For the social media novice:
- POSTS: Reposting all day push marketing with no benefit for your followers is a big no no. How does that help their lives and businesses? Post excellent content for them, and pepper in your promos.
- VARIETY: Posting the same messages on a variety of social media channels may decrease your followers. If you post the same image on FB, Twitter and Instagram within 10 min, why would followers follow you on multi streams of communication? Vary your messages to give your followers a reason to follow you on all your channels.
- YOUR IMAGE: Be sure what you RT and share fits your business and image accurately. Read the articles prior to posting and make sure what you share and post is accurate. This is your voice and a representation of your brand. If you post something that is fake or inappropriate it’s your business brand and personal image that is on the line.
- NEGATIVITY: Avoid negative remarks and posts and debating issues on social media. If it’s a messy situation, post that you will reach out to them privately to handle the complaint or issue. Once a resolution has been reached, post and share gratitude for his or her business. This is again a view for others into your business and your customer service.
- RESEARCH: Spend time getting to know your followers and potential clients. This will prevent wasteful and countless hours in posting content that doesn’t resonate with your clients. Research first, so you start off with a studied path of success.
Social media and your connection to your clients is a direct avenue and voice for your business. Use social media to further connect with them, develop rapport and trust, and ultimately be the first business that comes to mind the next time they need help in their business. Every post is another reminder on the “Why’s to Hire”. And the hire is you!