Social media is not a cure-all for your business blues. Social media is about building a relationship with your current and potential customers and clients. It’s not about generating sales leads, it’s not about driving traffic to your site, and it’s not about getting something to go viral. It’s about consistent time and effort to choose which social media services best suit your business and target demographic, and spending your money wisely to build and implement successful campaigns.
There is no magic wand, no fairy godmother who can do anything to double or triple your social media traffic. Results take time. Even if you’re employing a professional to handle social media and content, you’re not going to see results unless you have a strategy and are looking at the long view instead of thinking that one viral meme or video is going to make your brand. Forbes points out that 73 percent of Americans have some sort of social media profile on such platforms as Facebook (the 800 pound gorilla of social media presence for small businesses worldwide), Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram, You Now, and other venues. Yet, despite this, businesses, presumably run by people who also have some sort of social media profile, struggle to integrate social media with their other customer-facing online venues and lack the ability to define and measure ROI.
Do’s and Don’ts
- DO be professional when you interact over social media and keep in mind that these interactions can be seen as part of customer service.
- DON’T mine your social media for sales leads, you’re building a relationship, not a pitch.
- DO invest the time it takes to create good, fresh content for your blog. Readers keep coming back when you post relevant and rich information.
- DON’T abandon your page. It’s not enough to just have a Facebook page or an Instagram account, you have to do something with it to make people notice.
- DO create content that is uniquely you and your brand with your “voice” and turns of phrase. Go out on a limb to make something different and outstanding.
- DON’T delete negative comments. It can look as if you’re hiding something and can lead to people flooding your page with Internet Justice. Handle them professionally and calmly.
- DO have more than one person dedicated to handling the social media aspect in terms of creating content, posting, and handling feedback.
- DON’T spam your followers with postings. Create a schedule based on your user metrics and be sure to post content on that schedule.
- DO take the long term view on ROI. Nothing happens right away, and it can take years to build an active social media base. However, you will find that the more followers you have, the more they will influence others to follow you.
Finally, if you are not getting the results you think you need, you may want to retain an expert in social media marketing to help build the kind of presence that will grow, and grow your business with it.