Whenever we read about the social media we’re invariably told about its benefits.
Experts bang on about how it can help us reach new audiences or help us better engage with our communities. But here’s a question for you: what happens when your social media efforts fall upon stony ground, or worse still, go horribly wrong? That’s an issue these same experts seem remarkably reluctant to address. Now you may think that it doesn’t really matter, but you couldn’t be more wrong if you tried. All it takes is one misjudged tweet or injudicious Facebook post and the world could come tumbling down around you. A negative post that goes viral can destroy a brands’ reputation irreparably. So how can you avoid these costly mistakes?
What can you do to ensure you engage with your audience?
Well, the obvious answer is to think carefully before you post. Apart from that Search and More would recommend that you consider these 3 pointers.
Engage your audience and avoid self-promotion.
Social media platforms are about sharing and engaging. Facebook and Twitter rely on sharing information and ideas: that’s why they’re called social networks. What social media platforms are not about is you and your brand. You might not necessarily appreciate it, but your followers and community are your greatest asset. You should, therefore, be interacting with their clients, offering feedback and asking for their opinions. Any business that simply posts advertisements, or tweets without retweeting or engaging in conversation, is obviously not interested in engaging with its audience and the community does not respond well to such practices.
Different platforms: different messages.
If you think that one message or post will suffice on different social networks then you are mistaken. Simply replicating the same content on Facebook, Twitter and Google+ just isn’t acceptable. Each platform has its own mores, its own language and its own audience. Each platform also has its own rules and norms. That’s why it vital to only share platform-specific posts. Get to know your audience, get to know how they think and respond and adapt your content to satisfy their hopes and expectations.
Speak with a unique voice.
It’s all too easy to jump on a trending bandwagon or nail your colours to the mast of the ship you think will most likely be successful, but social media audiences prefer originality and creativity. If your brand tries to hijack a trending news item or popular thread, you may get some sort of short term benefit, but what you will never get is sustained longer-term influence. Your social media marketing efforts should be geared towards building your own brand, not piggy-backing on the popularity of others. Granted, it won’t be easy building this reputation, but it will be worth all the hard work when you get there.