Social Media Requires More Than Luck

13 Social Media Tips Every Marketer Can Use

Friday the 13th black cat Today’s a good day to stay home if you’re a paraskevidekatriaphobic (aka someone with an irrational fear of Friday the 13th). When it comes to social media, many marketers think every day’s Friday the 13th with the possibility of a potential PR crisis in every social media posting.

Take a deep breath because social media isn’t a matter of luck. Granted for some organizations, stepping out from behind their corporate speak and anonymity is scary but here are thirteen social media tactics your business can follow to make its own luck.

  1. Listen before you speak. Marketers are used to talking without taking the time to hear what their target audience is saying or wants. Social media provides the means to find out what they’re saying.
  2. Learn the rules of each platform. Just as you wouldn’t get behind the wheel of a car without taking driving lessons, the same holds true for social media. Further, don’t assume social media is one integrated platform where what works on Facebook will work on Twitter. (It won’t!)  Learn the ropes for each new network.
  3. Respect prospects, customers and the public. Don’t think shoppers are dumb. The always-on, connected customer is probably smarter than your average employee and they trust their smartphone to help them. As David Ogilvy taught us, “You wouldn’t tell lies to your own wife. Don’t tell them to mine.”
  4. Speak like a real person. Skip the corporate gibberish that’s been scrubbed of anything remotely sounding human. People deal with other people and social media is no different.
  5. Eliminate promotions. To win social media connections, remove the promotional and sales verbiage from your messages. Rather use social media and content marketing to show customers how to use your products more effectively.
  6. Show your brand. Understand that social media and related content marketing require a 360 degree brand. Make sure that you’ve determined how your brand will appear beyond the usual logo and graphics.
  7. Be transparent in your dealings. This doesn’t mean you need to divulge confidential information. Whether it’s your customers or your employees, be honest and open to build trust and long-term relationships.
  8. Interact on social media. Social media isn’t a one-to-many delivery system to blast your message out. Rather it’s a many-to-many engagement platform. Participants expect you to engage with them.
  9. Share useful information. Social media is about paying-it-forward with your community. To that end, create content marketing that encourages readers to share with their circles.
  10. Snap some photos. Don’t worry if words fail you on social media platforms since research shows that photos (and images more broadly) perform better than text. (Here’s how to upgrade your social media image.)
  11. Get your customers involved. Social media allows for interaction and engagement. To that end, ask your prospects and customers for their comments, shares and content. Understand that 90% lurk, 9% comment and 1% create content.
  12. Be prepared for customer questions. Understand that frustrated customers will use any entry to your organization they can find to get their questions answered. Therefore, have a process for answering these inquiries or you may have problems.
  13. Get out and socialize (aka IRL Social Media). Social media extends beyond online platforms. It engages in real life, in real time. Use platforms like Meetup to create events or extend offline events online through tools like Twitter.

Realize that social media enables you to make your own luck. Therefore, follow these thirteen points and start engaging with your audience.

What suggestions do you have to improve your social media luck?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen


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Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pedrosimoes7/347918846/

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