The beauty of social media is that you are able to interact with your followers (read: potential customers) remotely. Having a strong online presence is important as many people prefer to utilize their digital sources to communicate. As with all strategies, there are appropriate and inappropriate ways to execute.
DO: Create ways to get people talking.
Online users prefer company pages where there is frequent activity coming from both the page holder and followers. For smaller companies or businesses who are just starting out, there are ways to grow your online base.
Ways to Build More Engagement:
Posting company/industry relevant articles and asking open-ended questions.
For example, say you work for a travel company and there was a new concept that claims to make travel easier. You could find an unbiased article and add a short question like “What are your thoughts on this new travel medium?”
Who doesn’t love free things? Posts getting people to “Like & Share to be entered to win XYZ” are great because they generate more buzz on your company’s page and by sharing onto their page, their friends are ultimately seeing it. Word-of-mouth travels far!
Show your company off in a new light.
Visually appealing/lighthearted posts tend to generate the most likes/shares. Share a captivating photo of one of your products or find a funny, industry related meme. You can even post a picture of employees/customers *WITH THEIR PERMISSION* using your product/service!
DO: Make it worth your followers time.
This may seem like common sense but it is one of the more frequent problems occurring within companies social media pages. You have to create value to followers because if they feel as though they are not getting anything out of your page…. Unfollow. Several of the same techniques mentioned above (creating engagement) can also be applied here. Also, posting about specials or deals happening through your company works well as many would not have known prior to seeing your post. Even creating special promotions or deals exclusively for your followers is a great technique as it benefits both parties. Your company is gaining likes/follows (more reach) and your followers score a good deal or win a prize or what have you.
DO: Post regularly. But don’t go overboard.
Depending on the platform(s) your company is using determines how often you should post. Twitter and Facebook are great because multiple posts daily are appropriate. However, if your company is utilizing Instagram, it is best not to spam people’s feeds with frequent posts. 1-2 posts a day would be sufficient for an average week.
DON’T: Only post to promote.
Social media is a wonderful place for marketing purposes. However, your followers eventually tire out of the plain jane advertisements they see on their timeline. As said before, there are many ways to draw people into your page and many of them do not include promotional efforts. Post a funny meme. Share news going on within your company. Post a fun #throwbackthursday picture.
DON’T: Ignore negative reviews on your page.
Not everyone is going to be your biggest fan. It may seem like a tragedy when someone leaves a one-star review on your page or even worse, a novel going into extensive detail their experience with the company. However, companies can easily turn these into opportunities to show off their PR and customer service skills. Apologize, listen to the problem, and offer solutions. You should never be rude or condescending to a past, current, or potential customer but that is ESPECIALLY applicable when the whole world has the ability to see. Maintain a calm demeanor and offer empathy. Followers will notice that you take the time to reply.
Other ‘Housekeeping’ Tips:
- Use hashtags appropriately. On Facebook, hashtags are not necessary and many times take away from the post. Hashtags should be used sparingly on Facebook. On Twitter, users are only given 140 characters for each post, so hashtags are not heavily used there as well. Given that many people search by ‘topic’ on Instagram, hashtags are acceptable and should be used. Hashtags should be short and easy to dissect, and relatable to the post. 11 is considered the ‘golden number’ of hashtags on Instagram.
- Do not buy followers, ask for followers/likes, or like your own page. These are very unprofessional tactics and can make the company come off as desperate.
- “I”, “my”, “me”, “myself”, etc. should not be used! The page is dedicated to a company-not a specific person. Third person can be used but I would advise that using first person plural (“we” or “our”) is the safest route. Also, remain consistent in these posts- pick either first or third person and stick with it!
*Good Example: “Mango Bay launches a new website.”
*Good Example: “Everyone who likes our page will be entered to win ABC.”
*Bad Example: “Like my page to be entered to win!”