For most businesses, the sole point of having social media is so customers — present and potential — can connect with your brand or business.
It’s a way for you to tell your brand story, build your brand personality and ultimately convert spectators into brand advocates and loyal customers.
Once restricted by location and budget, one-man-bands starting from absolute scratch in their studio apartments can now manifest their dreams.
It may not be to sell anything at all — it may just be to open up opportunities for collaborations, endorsement deals or even just for free samples. Whatever your goal, social media is the gateway.
So how can you harness this beast? How can you make it work for your business? How can you find your tribe and connect with them?
If you manage your content, conversation and consistency, you’ll be well on your way to an authentic and engaged community!
Here’s how to do it:
Pretty pics from Pinterest or Tumblr may make for a beautiful post and an easy ‘like’, but if you’re only curating and sharing other people’s images you’re running the risk of being same-same. Anyone can find an image online and repost it, but if you’re not creating your own content then people can’t share it on your behalf — and that should be a goal of all online businesses. Without originality, people can’t share your creation, wisdom, services, product, or inspiration. And let’s face it, that’s when the real exposure comes into play.
If you’re sourcing images from somewhere other than your own camera roll, remember to credit the source or author (this includes screenshots!). We’ve seen an insta-movement sweep our newsfeeds recently — the #createorcredit campaign was started by Catherine Grace and reminds us that if we didn’t create it, then we should credit the person who did.
Make every effort to find the original creator too, not just the person you are regramming it from. If you had created something people love enough to share, wouldn’t you want to know about it? Let’s extend the same courtesy to others.
If you were walking down the street and someone stopped you and said “hey, I absolutely love your work — where can I buy it?” would you just keep walking without saying a word? I don’t think so. And so, it shouldn’t be your practice online either. If someone is reaching out to connect, to ask you, thank you — or better yet — to post about your product/service on his or her own account, please, please, please respond! Social media is a two-way conversation. Without your followers, your account is kaput. So acknowledge, thank and treasure them.
If you’re just too popular and your comments and likes scroll down your notifications feed too quickly for you to keep up, try jumping on Iconosquare, clicking on the ‘Manage’ tab and using the ‘Comment Tracker’. You’ll never miss an important opportunity to connect with a potential customer again!
“I don’t have time for social media during my day.”
“The event whizzed past so fast I didn’t get a chance to post anything.”
“I missed out on promoting the end of my online sale because the shop was too busy”
Scheduling posts in advance can save you heartache and precious time. It’s important to have a consistent presence online so your followers can do just that — follow along — on your brand/business/personal journey.
When asked, the majority of us say time, or lack thereof, is the reason why we don’t post more often. Software like Hootsuite allows you to plan and schedule your posts across Facebook and Twitter, plus many more. Unfortunately we can’t schedule posts on Instagram (yet), but there is a handy app that can save you from forgetting to post that important pic at the right moment. With Latergramme, you can upload your image, write your caption and schedule in the date and time for your reminder. You’ll get a notification on your phone and the app will connect you straight to Instagram where your image and caption are pre-filled for you to simply press ‘share’. A godsend.
So now there are no excuses for missing opportunities to post or for falling off the radar for weeks on end.
Got another tip OR question? We’d love to hear what works or doesnt work for you, so share with us in the comments below!