Social Media – Business Content
September 8, 2013 1 Comment
For any business whose looking to create a social media presence, you need to generate likes, drive shares and keep your audience engaged.
Content is key!
You need to connect and engage with people – its what social media is all about really. Hence the word “social”.Some of you will need to break habits and for others the concept of engaging an audience will be easier said than done. The only real way you’ll achieve it, is by committing wholeheartedly to COMMUNICATING; to give VALUE to your audience. Now I have no intention of insulting your intelligence here but the word communicating involves 50% listening and 50% responding. If you’ve read my post ‘Social Media – Business Basics‘, you’ll know that this is not delivered through one-way advertising. The content you post can define the results of your social media campaign. It needs to be engaging to communicate on different levels.Let me just skim through the different levels and what they actually mean:
- One way communicating = A post which doesn’t encourage responses including some adverts if untargeted.
- Two-way communicating = You’re having a conversation with a member of your audience.
- Multi-way communicating = Your audience is responding to each other.
How does this affect results?
The amount of responses and particularly early responses defines whether your posts will stay at the top of ‘top stories’ on your audience’s newsfeed. So encouraging as many responses to your posts is vital to your page going viral. Engage them in a conversation that is relevant to your business and their interests. This is why its important to listen to what your audience is talking about – get a feel for what they’re interested in discussing.
As I said, early responses is important so look at the times which your target audience posts so you can get a feel for when they’re generally online. If your posts are fresh when they’re online, it will more-likely be at the top sections of their feed which is more encouraging for them to respond – you’ve got to make it easy. If you post at a time of day when your audience is busy, it won’t necessarily appear in their news feed (top stories) and so each time you miss out on an opportunity. The more positive interactions a person has, the more likely they’ll be influenced to buy the products or services your business has to offer.
What exactly should I be posting?
Once you start listening to your audience, you should start to get a feel for what your audience is interested in. This is far easier on twitter because posts are public by default so you might want to join some groups on Facebook. Needless to say, you should research your customers and not just on social media so if you’ve taken this good step as part of your business plan then you’ll already have a basic idea – but don’t EVER stop listening!
- Think about some frequently asked questions from your customers so far and if you don’t have any yet, then improvise – what might be commonly asked questions? Post the sort of questions that can be answered in a couple of lines. Never post big blocks of text on your page. Its likely people won’t read it all – You’ve got to make it easy for them. Always keep your posts short! If its more than 3 lines, consider breaking it up. Is it suitable as two posts? (needless to say, not straight after each other either) If not, break the text up into short paragraphs. If you don’t know what you should be asking, ask them what they’d like to know. What knowledge or experience do you have in the industry which your customers might find useful? Ask for feedback. What do you audience think about a certain service, product etc Offer industry tips or advice to your audience but not all at once – drip feed it one by one.
- Delighted customers are more likely to recommend your services than those which are simple satisfied – think of the ‘share’ button. Talk about your customers – get them engaged in the conversation. It helps develop a real relationship with your customers if you mention them in some way – thats why some businesses decide to name their 100th/ 500th etc member. If you cut out the nonsense i.e. corporate talk and demonstrate a real entity you’ll make them feel part of your business. Show them what’s going on behind the scenes. Post pictures and videos if you can; they’re far more entertaining than reading a block of text.
- People are not always influenced by price. Offer them additional value (not monetary terms) and support to your followers. Think about what you can offer… Stating your prices and trying to compete on price isn’t always the way forward – prices don’t always influence an urge to buy. Think about it: What would you expect from a £10 toaster compared to a £40 toaster with 3 years warranty. Some people would much rather buy something expensive if they feel they’ll get better quality or an additional service. Make your values transparent to your audience – and not necessarily through advertisements but by the actions you take. In summary, break down what you offer but bring it into an engaging conversation which doesn’t involve a sales pitch by any shape or form.
Its also important to look at what your competitors are talking about both on and offline. Are you missing any opportunities to talk about something? – Don’t post the exact same Q’s though! Also look out for any unhappy or merely satisfied customers. Don’t be sly here though, customers don’t like to feel like someone is benefiting out of their bad experience.
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