For a lot of clients and potential clients, social media is a mystery. They aren’t exactly sure how or why it works, they’ve just heard that it does, and that’s why they call. Well, it’s not magic. It’s a process and whether you’re interested in trying it yourself or you are a potential client who just wants to know more about how it works, I’ve whipped up this brief guide to give you a better idea of how we bring content to your audience.
Determine who they are. Who is the right person for your product? And please, don’t say “anyone with money.” On social media, you need to be much more specific and intentional about what you do and say. Let’s imagine you’re playing darts. Unless it’s your first rodeo, anywhere on the board typically isn’t good enough. You need to know what you’re shooting for. So, if that “anyone with money” is an entire dartboard, who represents the bullseye? What do they typically have for lunch? Why? You probably need to go much more in-depth than you may have originally thought in determining who your audience is.
Determine where they are. That is, where online do they spend their time? Almost everyone is on Facebook, but that goes for businesses as well as people. It’s a crowded place for a small business with limited budget. Instagram has stellar engagement rates but requires a consistent stream of strong visual content. Anything less could be detrimental to the brand. LinkedIn is generally for professionals to network and share content with a view towards building their personal brands. Every platform has its own personality in this way, so you need to determine where it makes the most sense to spend your time and money.
Be a good tourist. I always say that the best way to really get to know a place is to walk around. It may take a bit longer but if you never get out of the car, you may never get to know the true character of the place you are visiting or living in. I believe this is true for businesses looking to expand into new avenues like social media as well. Don’t just jump in blind. Spend some time experiencing the various platforms. Search for various terms and hashtags that are relevant to your business. See what your competitors are doing. Make sure you’re at least somewhat comfortable with your environment before you come up with a strategy and start posting.
Stick to your strategy and ignore the noise. There can be a lot of temptation in the first few months of a social media strategy to hit the panic button. To say, hey wait, I don’t think this is working, let’s change gears. In our experience, changing gears that early only satisfies one’s desire to change gears. Nothing else is accomplished. After doing all your due diligence, stick to your initial strategy for at least six months. Don’t get bogged down by the things that don’t seem to go your way. For instance, every Twitter account I’ve ever managed has gotten boatloads of junk followers. That doesn’t detract at all from what you do so don’t get bogged down asking “why?”
When it comes to making contact with your audience on social media, it’s typically not as easy as just showing up and posting. You need to do a good deal of strategy work first. Do your research of your target audience along with the platforms you intend to use and you should make contact with your audience. Once you establish your strategy, stick with it for a good few months before you decide it’s time to switch gears. If you follow these steps, you should have a great foundation for beginning your company’s social media journey.
Image credit: CC by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center