Social Media Management – The Do’s & Don’ts
What IS Social Media Development?
Social media development is, basically, the development of optimized copy, images & other medias for the purpose of promoting your brand, service or product or contributing to the education and awareness of a pain point for your target audience through the distribution channels of social media platforms best suited to your business and/or industry. Wow, now that was a mouthful!
What is Social Media Management?
Social media management involves the administration and monitoring of ALL social media platforms used by a business. Here are some of the various tasks needed to observe good management of these distribution channels:
Social Media Strategy
- Develop SMART goals and KPI’s in order to analyze results and read insights.
- Create a great story that pulls at the heart strings. Never underestimate the power of great storytelling.
- Grow your content library. Ensure a variety of content types but makes sure your message remains connected to your overall campaign goals and seems seamless in approach across all channels.
- Use automation with great caution. Simply scheduling the same message throughout your channels of distribution haphazardly will come across as disingenuine. Use automation effectively but make sure to craft the post to match the platform it’s on.
- Have “growth” in mind. Like a well looked after garden, your follower list will not grow without your hard work, attention, and constant, dedicated engagement.
- Responsive replies – make sure that you are quick to respond to inquiries and feedback from your followers. This will ensure they remain followers and not drop you like yesterday’s trending #hashtag.
- Try and create engagement with fun promotions or alluring contests.
- Experiment with targeted advertising to increase brand visibility and follower engagement and interaction.
- Match your content to your buyer’s journey. Try and create a variety of content types for the awareness, consideration and decision stages of your buyer and lead them through the journey with captivating content.
- ALWAYS make sure every piece of content has a CTA (Call To Action) in order to entice your user to take the action you require of them.
- Spotlight social endorsements. Use customer testimonials and reviews in your content so that your target audience can connect the dots and start building trust for your brand.
- Benchmark your metrics by making sure you create a “start point” reporting that you will use as a benchmark to gauge all future results.
- Review your results on a regular basis to see what patterns begin to emerge within your reporting. This will assist you in flushing out the content types that garner very little engagement and increase resources and development towards content that produces the most interaction.
- Keep track of your results on a consistent basis. Build strong reports that include all your required KPI’s and upload them on a daily, weekly and monthly basis to compare the data and insights regularly.
- Analyze, review and repeat! Analyze your results. See what works and dump what doesn’t and try…try again. Social media is about trial and error, experimentation with constantly moving targets that make the rules almost impossible to follow. So, the only thing to do is to be committed to constant experimentation to find a groove that works for your business.
Why Do I Need To Use Social Media for My Business?
Here’s 17 REAL good reasons:
- Facebook: 1,968,000,000 users
- WhatsApp: 1,200,000,000 users
- YouTube: 1,000,000,000 users
- Facebook Messenger: 1,000,000,000 users
- WeChat: 889,000,000 users
- QQ: 868,000,000 users
- Instagram: 600,000,000 users
- QZone: 595,000,000 users
- Tumblr: 550,000,000 users
- Twitter: 319,000,000 users
- Sina Weibo: 313,000,000 users
- Baidu Tieba: 300,000,000 users
- Snapchat: 300,000,000 users
- Skype: 300,000,000 users
- Viber: 260,000,000 users
- Line: 220,000,000 users
- Pinterest150,000,000 users
Now, for the Do’s & Don’ts
Social Media Do’s:
- Make sure you KNOW who your customer is.Research and develop your customer personas and “understand” whom you are tailoring your messaging to.Your customers don’t really care about you or your business. Get that?! All they really care about is how your product or service can help them achieve a result. Remember the storytelling aspect I was discussing earlier? Well, write stories that your target audience can identify with, relate to and feel an emotional connection towards. So, 2/3 of what you post about should be something they’ll benefit from. 1/3 of your posts can be about you, your business, your products, and your services.
- Be active but don’t overwhelm your audience.Be active on your social media, but don’t post so often that you overwhelm or annoy people. This could cause people to stop following you. Research the platforms and the stats of that platform and see what the “standard” posting frequency is and adhere to it.
- Keep track of time. Time does Experiment by posting at different times and pay attention to the analytics. Find out when your followers are most active on social media and post during those time frames. See what times garner the most interaction or engagement and choose to post at these time frequencies.
- Develop one voice throughout all your distribution channels.Social media is great for sharing, but make sure your message is clear, consistent and seamless across all channels: website, public, social media, etc.
- Be generous with sharing valuable information that will help your buyer personas get what they want out of your interaction. Give freely and without expectation. If you share of yourself in this way, authentically, it will be returned to you ten fold!
- Develop a checklist. Design a process for yourself and stick to it so that you always create your posts in the same way. Checklists take the edge off of a process by establishing a standard list of items that absolutely need to be included in all posts. This way, you really don’t have the opportunity to forget to do something. Checklists make for certain that grammar will be checked and hashtags researched with every post and that links go where they were meant to go. Social Media can easily be overwhelming for the new business owner, checklists remove the anxiety and replace it with an easy to follow “roadmap to success”!
- Respond in a timely manner.Provide great customer service to your clients and prospects who send inquiries. Make sure to respond quickly and in a professional manner…no matter what the feedback may be. More and more customers are reaching out to brands through their social media channels and this can be a great source of anxiety for some and a huge opportunity to win for others. Happy customers establish loyalty in a big way with a brand that serves them well and they become very strong brand ambassadors in the interim.
- Give off an energetic vibe.Dull, boring posts lead to dull, boring interactions and no engagement. Exude great passion for what you do, share that passion with your target audience, get them excited about you, your company, your products, and your goals. Make them interested in what you have to say by giving off a positive vibe and a sense of joy. Don’t be a Debbie Downer…nobody likes to hang around that!
- Understand which social media platform(s) are best for your business.Just because everyone else seems to be on Facebook doesn’t mean you need to be. Social media isn’t one-size-fits-all. If you want to improve your SEO, then Google+ or YouTube might be your best choice. If you want to drive traffic to your site or improve your customer engagement, then Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest might be a better fit. Once you complete your buyer personas, you’ll be better able to understand where you need to be because all you’ll need to do is figure out where your personas hang out…or where your competitors are. Look up your direct competitors, where do they post? Where are they spending their time, resources and ad dollars? If in doubt, fiercely follow the competition.
Social Media Don’ts:
- Don’t like your own posts.Don’t be that person who “likes” or “Favorites” their own posts and materials. Yes, I know, you like your stuff and you just want the world to know…it’s ok…we know. Now, one thing I will definitely encourage you to do is have ALL of your employees “Like” and “share” the posts on their own feeds and email it to their lists. The people that work for you should be your greatest brand ambassadors.
- Don’t neglect your profile(s).Don’t just set these profiles up all over the web and never come back to them! You need to maintain your profiles. Change the banner, the profile picture, the hashtags, etc…on a regular basis in order to seem, to the outside web world, that you are in constant evolution with your personal and professional brand.
- Don’t share too much.Be mindful of what you share and at what time you share it. For example, if you are planning a big launch of a product or service, you want to have a campaign that will have you Tweeting subtle hints of it for weeks. It only takes a minute to drop the wrong Tweet and let the cat out of the bag too early, in turn, ruining the entire campaign climax! That’s why I am such a fan of creating Social Media calendars. They give you the opportunity to schedule everything ahead of time and have a careful planning of the content you’ll deliver during your campaign. No surprises equal fewer chances to say things you shouldn’t on the fly.
- Don’t connect with everyone.This one is a bit tricky as it goes against the “sales rep” core law of creating the largest pool to fish from. But it’s important to understand that whom you accept in your “Social” circle may affect your brand. Just make sure that you review your followers and that you filter the pool to ensure those fish belong in your unique pond.
- Don’t forget to network.It’s important to reach out and start conversations with your followers. I know, you are a small business owner working 18 hour days already, where will you find the time to “network” in your social profiles? Well, consider it in this way; you’d go play golf with a business prospect and spend 4 hours with time chit chatting about things no? Well then, do the same with your social profiles once a week. Consider it your online golf game time and just spend a few hours getting to know the people that are showing an interest in your business. You never know what can happen with just one “reach out”.
- Don’t be spammy.PLEASE don’t connect to a million people so that you can turn around and start spamming their inboxes with your sales pitch. This is definitely a very good way to have people delete you off of their lists. Nobody likes a telemarketer inundating his or her feeds with sales pitches. Don’t post the same thing over and over again every day. Be mindful that these channels are opportunities to really connect, authentically, don’t take this gift for granted!
- Don’t ignore comments.Never ignore anyone’s engagement whether it be a positive or a negative one. Ignoring comments and not responding to them makes you appear as if you don’t really care or worse, that you’re not minding your online presence. This is a crucial form of customer service and again, a great opportunity for you to make a real connection to someone who’s interested in your business. Answer each comment with warmth, empathy, and authenticity and I promise you people will return it ten fold.
- Don’t delete negative comments. There is really no sense in sticking your head in the sand by deleting negative comments off of your social media channel feeds. Address it face on and make sure you keep your emotions in check. Addressing negative comments shows that you have a proactive approach to solving problems and that you actually care about your customers. Resolving a negative issue online, in front of the online community, can often result in your “good deed” going viral and giving you the best publicity you’ll ever have. Then again, ignoring it can have the same effect, but in a negative way.
Social Media can often feel like a mine field to most people, especially small business owners who are not used to threading the waters of online turbulent seas. But, if done right, it can do so much good for the visibility of your business and your overall brand messaging. In today’s market, Social Media just cannot be ignored and must be developed for your small business in order for you to have any chance at competing for the prize. So, make sure you know how to develop, optimize and maintain your social media platforms so you can give your business a fighting chance.
If you’re interested in learning how to develop, optimize and maintain your social media channels for your small business, sign up for my workshops. Click here to learn more.