Social media was not built to be rigid, and whilst it’s important to ensure that the integrity of your business is upheld, it’s also important to ensure that your brand feels relatable and engaging.
Putting too many rules in place can hinder the creative process, and that’s what social media is – a platform for creativity to grow.
It helps to have a plan, don’t jump blindly into social media – treat each channel as just that, a separate channel, and be consistent in your presence.
Allow more than one member of the team access to your social channels, for many reasons. Two (or more) minds can often be better than one, offering a varied perspective and approach to content. Also, in many companies it’s often the case that there is one social media gatekeeper, which means that if for whatever reason they happen to be out of office or move on, the consistency of the efforts take a hit.
Whilst it is important to ensure that tone of voice is protected on your channels and that accountability sits with the few rather than the many, we’d recommend hosting a monthly content meeting with a few team members to inspire new ideas and ensure that support is readily available should it be needed.
Create a centralised password tracker and ensure the relevant teams know where to access it, and also – regularly update your passwords, not just when someone leaves the team.
Each channel will inspire a slightly different purpose and audience. Whilst Facebook is becoming a platform that appears in favour of businesses, Instagram for instance still requires a much more personal and approachable communications strategy.
Images, over videos and text, still reign when it comes to encouraging interaction and growth – and as a result, you’ll need a lot more of them! Showcase your teams and the fun things you’re up to, whether that be grabbing a cup of coffee in the new restaurant on your street, or being snowed in on the weekend!
Crowd sourcing content
Crowd sourcing content is a great way to build your social presence, and it requires being flexible about the type of content you’d like to share. It also requires you to drop the rules of having your logo on every image you post – as an example.
Why not share content you already know works? Always credit the owner of the image or article, ensure it is relevant in some way to your brand (in ethos, industry or interest) and watch your interactions grow.
Growing a following
Building a relevant follower base can be tricky business, and will require you to say good-bye to some of your rules. Are you picky about the number of people your account follows? In order to be noticed and at a rapid pace, you’ll need to interact and follow.
Identify your target follower by checking out the competition, and start by following the accounts following them. Look at their bio descriptions for key words relevant to your business and industry, and look for follower signals. How many accounts do they follow versus those that follow them?
Yes, this takes time – but is proven to be extremely effective.
It’s also worth mentioning that depending on your product, your audience can reach further afield than the industry you are in. Think about the power of word-of-mouth and social impressions – you never know how far your message can reach, even if the first person receiving it is not your target audience.
Let’s not forget that the best way to build interactions is to start a conversation. Join relevant trending conversations, thank people for following you and interact where you can.
It is a great idea to identify keywords and hashtags which relate directly to your product and industry, however don’t forget to do your research on the top performing hashtags on your chosen channels. Think about how you can interact and tap into the audiences that subscribe to hashtags like #mondaymotivation for example. Remember we’re personality building, so even if you are selling car parts or roofing tiles, these hashtags still appeal to and reflect your teams – and this will serve you well!
Scheduling social media content is often the most efficient way of managing a variety of channels and ensuring consistency, however, don’t give up on real time posting.
Responding to trends on social media can have a huge impact on your reach and interactions, which ultimately contributes to growth. If you’ve scheduled content, get into the habit of still checking in on your accounts everyday and responding to relevant activity and discussions.