Social networking is now the most popular online activity, so it makes sense for businesses to try to engage with key audiences there. Here are key elements to a successful road map for businesses to engage on social media.
Have a Strategy
Before you start you need to have a plan. Creating accounts and posting content is not a plan. Your plan needs to address:
- Research that identifies where your target audience is online and what they are doing there. You need to be sure you are in the right place(s) to make connections.
- Your goal. What do you want to accomplish with your social media presence?
- Strategies to support the goal. What specific things do you plan to do?
- Measurement and evaluation plans. You need to know if your time and effort is moving you toward your goal.
- Define the logistics – who will post, where, and how often. Map out the process from content creation to content publishing.
- Catalogue the resources on hand such as videos, photos, content, etc. and the tools to be used.
Post Relevant Content Regularly
Share interesting and engaging information with your social networks regularly. Use your research insights to post items that you know are of interest. Be sure to ask meaningful questions (such as ideas for improvement) and provide meaningful benefits (such as discounts or special access) to your followers.
Mix things up. Many people follow you on multiple channels so don’t post the same content everywhere all the time. Customize your messaging to what works best on each channel you are using.
Be Selective About Your Channels
Speaking of social channels, keep in mind that the business with the most social channels doesn’t automatically win. It’s all about being in the right places to engage with the right people.
Keep your focus narrow and branch out if you can make a compelling business case to do so. Creating an account that you don’t use sends a message that you are not active, engaged, and relevant. Worse, it will make the effective efforts of your competitors look even better.
Establish a Brand Voice
Your brand’s voice expresses your brand’s personality and values. It should be distinctive and unique if you want to stand out among all the content on social media. Publishing content in a cohesive and consistent brand voice differentiates you and entices people to follow you.
Regularly Monitor Your Metrics
It’s great to have hundreds of followers, but they’re not very useful if they aren’t interested in your products or services. Focus on finding and connecting with influencers – the people who care about your business and who will share good information about you.
Evaluate your success according to the measures outlined in your plan. Make adjustments as needed to keep on the path to your goal.