It’s no longer necessary to tell you your business needs to be on social media. Pretty much everyone knows that now, right? If you don’t, then wake up, smell the coffee (I’m drinking Gevalia myself), and have your 8-year-old explain it to you.
But, there is a difference between being on social media and being successful on social media. Here are my top tips.
1. You’ve got to have a plan
I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. You might be anxious to jump in and just get started… and honestly, that’s better than waiting until you have everything 100% figured out (which will be never because it’s constantly changing!).
But you’ll succeed faster if you have some sort of plan. Preferably, you should have a plan for each platform you plan to be on.
And each platform is different. The demographics are different, the etiquette is different, what works and what doesn’t work is different.
Have an overall plan or objective for your social media campaigns, and then have specific “mini-plans” for each platform.
You don’t need to be on all platforms at once. I would start out with two, master those, and then add more if you want to.
Your home base should be your website, and all other platforms should point there. That’s the only real estate you actually own.
You’re just sharecropping on social media.
2. You’ve got to be consistent
This is where that plan really comes in handy. You don’t want to post five times on Facebook today, and then not post for another week.
You don’t want to send out one or two tweets on Twitter. In fact, if you choose Twitter as one of your platforms, be prepared to Tweet a lot. Once an hour isn’t too much on Twitter, it’s a fast-moving feed.
You don’t want to post as often on Facebook. In fact with the coming algorithm changes, I would experiment with sending out between 3 and 6 posts a day and see what happens.
There is some concern in social media circles that frequent posts without much engagement will actually hurt your rank on Facebook and have you showing up less in the Newsfeed.
Plan what kind of content you will be posting and how often.
3. You’ve got to be classy
Now more than ever, the focus should be on quality, not quantity. Don’t publish junk. Make sure you are delivering value.
You need to give them something they actually want. Make sure it’s relevant.
Your posts can be entertaining, educational, inspirational — even a combination! But it must be interesting.
The best advice I can give you is to ask yourself before you post: “Is this something I would want to like, comment on or share?”
If you focus on only providing share-worthy content, then your audience will probably like it too!
4. You’ve got to post images and videos
When you look at the analytics, the visual posts perform better than text posts or links. So be sure to use images, videos and especially Facebook live to get the best interaction with your followers.
Stories are another great tool you can use, and they allow you to combine images, videos, and text cards.
5. You’ve got to measure your results
The best way to know what your audience likes is to go over your analytics for different post types.
You can easily see what type of post performs better with your community, as well as which topics have more interaction. Then, serve up more of what they are consuming.
Look at the reach, engagement, mentions, shares, actions, clicks, comments… If they are interacting in some way, try creating more content that is similar.
If you don’t track it, you don’t know what’s working.
Finally, engage with your audience! Social media wasn’t meant to be a one-way conversation. Don’t just talk at your audience, speak with them. And not just on your page!
Like, retweet, comment, share their posts too (look for something that’s relevant).
This does two things: Not only does it help you build a relationship with that person, but it also puts you on the radar of their other friends on the platform.