10 Simple Tips To Improve Your Business’ Social Media Presence
There’s a reason why marketers will spend $8.3 billion on social media marketing in 2015. These days, it’s one of the best ways to grow your business, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t have to work at it with patience and dedication because it takes a strong presence and a large following to see results.
Here are ten simple tips to improve your business’ social media presence, bring in followers by the droves, and start seeing conversions.
1. Keep Things Real
The number one way to boost your social media presence is to behave like a real person and not a faceless company. Interact with your followers regularly and don’t hesitate to mix fun stuff into your business-oriented posts. To humanize your brand, try posting fun or inspiring quotes, “behind-the-scenes” shots of the office, or photos of your Monday morning latté from your favorite coffee shop. When it comes to responding to your followers’ comments, try to reply to all of them, especially questions or complaints. Keeping things real will make your fans feel more connected to your business.
2. Use Social Media Icons
There are all kinds of social media icons that you can put on your website, from buttons that link to your profile pages to icons that show share counts. Take advantage of some of these tools to make it easier for browsers to find and follow you on their favorite platforms. Buttons that allow people to effortlessly share your content to social media are particularly important. If users need to copy and paste a link and then write up a post to go with that link, they’re less likely to share your blog, article or product than if they can simply click a “Share,” “Pin” or “Tweet” button.
3. Get the Word Out
Social media icons on your website aren’t the only way to get people to check out your social profiles. You can also build your presence by advertising your social networks in other promotional materials. For instance, if you’re running a full-page ad in a magazine or newspaper, make sure to add a line like “Find Us On Facebook!” – and don’t forget to include your link! This goes for all forms of advertising – not just newspapers and magazines, but also the signs in your store windows, your business cards, promotional emails, receipts, and more.
4. Turn Complaints into Positive Experiences
Many consumers love to air their complaints on social media platforms because they feel that the company that wronged them will be shamed into making amends. For the most part, they’re right!
However, this doesn’t mean that the complaints posted on your Facebook page need to be a painful or embarrassing experience for your company. Most people understand that mistakes happen, and when they do, it’s your response that counts. Answer questions honestly and respond to complaints in a timely and professional manner. Fans and followers will see your comments and feel secure in the fact that should they ever have an issue with your product or service, they’ll receive the same excellent customer service.
5. The More, The Merrier!
These days, you can’t just create a Facebook page and then call it quits. Though 71 percent of adult Internet users are on Facebook, that doesn’t mean that you should ignore other social media. Everyone has a favorite social platform, which means that you need to build a presence on at least two or three different platforms – and preferably more, if you can.
Since your time is valuable, don’t waste it by making accounts on all the wrong platforms. Find those social networks that most closely match your target audience. LinkedIn, for instance, is geared towards college-educated professionals, while Pinterest is the platform to use if you’re marketing towards women between the ages of 18 and 29.
6. Host Online Games and Giveaways
If you really want to boost your presence, try hosting an event on social media – and not just something that is fun, but an event that also offers something of value to the participants. Inc.com relates the story of Gaia Essentials, a company that saw a 400 percent increase in traffic to their website when they offered a $25 gift card as a reward for winning a trivia contest.
Create your own events – trivia contests, online treasure hunts, photo contests, name your new product or anything else befitting your brand – and watch your business’ social media presence flourish. For example, when hosting a photo contest where the picture with the most “Likes” wins, state that one of the rules of participation is that that all “Likes” must be on the posted photo on your page – an effective method to drive traffic to your page where people are more apt to “Like” your profile as well as the post.
7. Give Potential Followers a Reason to Follow You
According to a study by ExactTarget, 58 percent of Facebook users expect to receive deals, sales or coupons when they “Like” a company. This means that if you want to keep your current followers while continuing to draw in new fans, you’ve gotta give ‘em what they want! If you sell your products and services online, post discounts monthly or weekly, exclusive content or events for Facebook fans, or special coupon codes for new fans (even if you’re giving them 10 percent off, you’re still making a new sale, and one that will likely get word-of-mouth advertising by a very happy customer). Brick-and-mortar stores can build their following by offering printable coupons or other “members only” deals.
8. Consistency is Everything
When it comes to online marketing, your fans and followers value consistency above all else. If your Twitter or Facebook accounts suddenly go quiet, followers will gradually drift away. By that same token, your audience is unlikely to appreciate content that deviates too far from the things that you normally post. In all things – timing, voice, branding, and message – maintain a level of consistency so that your fans know when to check in and what to expect.
9. Don’t Make It All About You
The key to social media marketing is to build a level of authenticity that your fans can relate to. If you’re only sharing your own content, viewers may feel like you’re simply advertising at them rather than trying to engage with them.
Plus, if you’re not sharing interesting content from around the Web, then you’re missing out on one of social media’s key perks: building online relationships. Share content from industry experts and you’ll not only boost your own influence and credibility, but you’ll also form relationships with those experts. When you share the content that your followers post, they’ll feel valued.
10. Include Visuals
Graphics are eye-catching — more so than the written word. Rather than posting links or a snippet of text, include attractive visuals wherever you can. These visuals can be photos, cartoons, videos or infographics. How much does this boost engagement? According to Social Media Examiner, Facebook posts with images have an 87 percent interaction rate, while links and status updates all come in at 4 percent or less.
It takes time and effort to build a strong social media presence, but the rewards are worth it. Mix these tips into your marketing strategy and watch your business soar to new heights!