Social Media isn’t necessarily about selling something like your services or products although fundamentally, that is probably your end goal. Companies whether large or small also use social media to inform, engage and entertain their followers building and growing an online community.
The truth is, people are social animals. A company that can build on a sense of togetherness through their business efforts and strategic plan, even when an engagement is not directly related to their services or products contributes towards a virtual collective.
Social networking is social, and so the more connections, communication and engagements you do as your brand, will indeed reflect the social nature of social media.
This post focuses on Instagram, Twitter, Linkedin and Blogs
Connect with your community on Instagram
In a nutshell, Instagram is a photo sharing based platform which is owned by Facebook. You can do Grid Posts, Stories and IGTV.
Instagram stories can help build leads for you business. They differ from regular Instagram posts because they come in a “slideshow” type format They are only live for 24 hours, but stories can be saved to any of your devices incase you want to use at a later date.
Engagement with stories is perhaps stronger then regular grid posts. They are displayed at the top of follower timelines where instagram users tend to already look daily. Stories can also aid towards your brand content, if you want to try out content or show behind the scenes or just engage with your online community, stories are your first port of call.
Be an established professional on Linkedin
LinkedIn is a Business-focused, professional social media platform. The objective is to: Help people find industry connections, provides a service to the user community such as specific groups, idea sharing and a platform to publish your own knowledgeable articles.
LinkedIn is a consistent platform with lots of great content as well as a the perfect place to find people and information. It is a site that has focused on what they do thus, you will not find a lot of advertising around gaming, diet pills or clothing brands etc between posts, which you may see on Facebook.
Linkedin offers a collective space- where you can find groups, articles and people as well as contribute in conversations, and expand your own network.
There are plenty of groups for you to join where people share knowledge and ask questions! It is important to make sure the group is right for you and reflect on your industry as well as your own personal development. To get your brand out there, you also need to devote time to being in the group and participating – yes it can be a lot of work but it can be extremely beneficial which can lead to more connections and potentially customers!
Tweets, re-tweets, and hashtags to market your brand
Twitter is another large and very popular social networking platform.
With the character length of a tweet now at 280 (orginially 140) – each tweet needs to be sharp, snappy and eye catching and actually fits with-in the constant scrolling world we live in! You can also add links to articles, blogs, websites and images.
As businesses develop fluency with Twitter, people will find it easier to create short, snappy comments that compel people to read your messages to increase engagement spark curiosity about your business.
Re-Tweets -Business that keep their Tweets short leaves space for others to forward and add their own comments to be able to re-tweet so their own followers.
A re-tweet status starts with RT = Re-tweet.
If a tweet is too long and other what to re-tweet, they will start the message with MT, MT = Modified Tweet.
As well, Twitter courtesy is to thank people who spread your messages by sending them a message via a status update, like this: “Thanks for the RT @personwhoRT !”
Hashtags! It used to just be twitter that used Hashtags, but now you will find hashtags across all social media platforms. And before that this symbol: # was a hash or a sign for a number but now when you see this # EVERYONE will says hashtag.
When you add a hashtag to your message, you can track, organise, and communicate with other people who use the same hashtag. In order to communicate with their communities directly, a business owner can start a “meeting” and everyone there answers or asks questions that end with the same hashtag. People following along with the hashtag can see the conversation going on within its own stream, and outside of everyone else’s conversations.
All business have utilised the hashtag empire, and often ask people to use hashtags for competitions or feature wearing an outfits? Examples are #wearingasos or #chancetowinITV you can do the same for your business, which will help with the interaction.
Build your blogs around your brand
Blogs are good for a few reasons from SEO and interacting with your client base. Before the up-rising of social media, every business was starting a blog and it was essential to create a good one in order to promote your business. Now with social media platforms in place, blogs have had to adapt to stay on people’s minds and remain relevant. In addition to microblogging, we can also create video blogs which you can find on YouTube.
In a nutshell - One of the most effective ways to build brand awareness, while providing relevant and useful content to your target audience is through consistent blogging. Blogging is an inexpensive way for small businesses to drive traffic to their site, enhance inbound marketing efforts and attract more perspective customers.
With people’s very short attention spans, one of the key things to remember about blogging is to keep your blog posts short. It is also important to have a tone of voice in your blog that reflects who you are, what your company stands for, and catches people’s attention. Whether it is being informative, being controversial, asking questions or just having some fun, best to keep it standard so people can relate to you and recognise your work.
When it comes to getting started with a blog, you need to remember that you are not a writer (unless you are, soz), so approach this as a learner. Do your research, read as many blogs as you can, and see what’s working (and what’s not!). Note things down like page layout, length of posts, columns on the margins, pictures, colour, and, of course, the content. The most popular and often free with a stand package are Blogger and WordPress.
The Rules of blogging: Like most thing, there are some guidelines that can help when you start blogging. Like every other area of Internet-based marketing, things are changing continually, so make sure you keep on top of things.
When you write a blog post, you also add tags or keywords to it. This will help you to find your old posts, to categorise articles, and for people to find what you are writing. Make sure that you set up some kind of analytics, too, so that you can see which posts attract attention, which ones didn’t, and who is reading them.
Your old posts can have staying power. A blog post you wrote six months or a year ago that remains relevant can be included in another blog post or re-posted on your social media platforms.
There are templates you can use to help you when starting a blog – from outline templates to content you can write. A basic google search will bring up pages of help and advice. Template choices are categorised from business, bakery, travel … whatever the industry there is a template our there. You are responsible and accountable for your own outcomes and, ultimately, for the success of the blog. So for example, If you represent a travel company, make sure you blog represents that industry.
There are a lot of paid service now you can use to your blog (as well as post on socials media) this can be risky as they can be costly and may not generate any leads. Always research for committing.
Use keywords for your industry and set up a glossary so that you can use them (without overusing them) in your blog posts. There are lots of programs that can help you do this.
Using keywords will help search engines locate your posts and push your page to the top of the search listings. If you search for your own posts (or have someone test it for you), and things show up on the second page of search results, people cannot find you. This kind of search engine optimization (SEO) is essential if people are going to find you on any kind of social media.
Lastly, don’t forget to share your posts on your social platforms, this will help drive traffic to your website.
Not sure on next steps?
Do you need help with your content? All of this sounds great but you don’t know where to start? I recommend working with Rachel Forcella.
Rachel is Content Coach, she works with female entrepreneurs to uncover their message, reveal their voice and empower them to create content that helps them to build profitable businesses.
“I believe that the world will be a better place with more financially independent women in it, and it’s my mission to help women achieve this!”
To get in touch see below links to her socials.