Having a presence on social media is a great way to showcase a business and establish a brand among users and customers. Many are familiar with personal social media accounts, but including social media, as part of a business model requires some intentional practices. Recently I posted about the 5 worst social media practices, now lets discuss the three best social media practices to adapt in order to ensure that the business is represented appropriately and a sense of community is established.
Go beyond marketing and promotional content
One of the biggest mistakes when using social media to further your brand is limiting your content to only marketing or promotional updates. Users appreciate updates, but only posting marketing pieces will give your pages and your brand a very business only feeling. By broadening your posts to include more content that is relevant to your business and the interests of your clients or customers, you will create a more well-rounded and personal experience. A great way to go beyond promotional content is to provide content that can make your customers’ lives easier, and it’s even better if those tips or tricks incorporate some your products or services.
Other ways to extend your reach beyond marketing is to create content with one of the follow focal points:
- Answer questions and respond to comments: this can either be done directly on your social media page or within an article or update. It’s also a great way to interact with users and let them get to know your brand.
- Non-promotional company information: you can post about a company picnic or party, as well as what the company does for the community, like volunteering or hosting events. This shows users your range and how the business can impact more than just needing a product or service.
- Job openings: with so many people online, posting job opportunities on your social media pages can reach those that both like your business and would like to join the team.
A large aspect of social media is being social, which includes not only posting updates and creating content but also interacting with followers, fans, and potential customers. Using an active social media page is a great way to showcase your brand, illustrate what the business stands for, and learn how to make things better. Several ways to be interactive includes engagement, asking for help, and monitoring your page for feedback.
Engagement in relation to social media means responding to comments, mentions, and discussion on your business page. Someone should be present and active on a daily basis, to show the customers and users that the page is being maintained, which further creates a sense of community. Responding to most commentary and all questions is the best practice to showcase the brand and relays to customers that the brand is present and listening.
A social media page is also a great place to ask for help in your business. Once you’ve established a reliable presence with a solid community, these relationships are ideal
for getting feedback on your company. Ways to ask for help include:
- Survey participation: a survey can be helpful when discussing future products, services, or getting ideas for expanding.
- Product feedback: asking for feedback is a great way to evaluate experiences and products without referring clients to a secondary website or service.
- Content sharing: if you’re looking to get more business or extend your reach you may be able to ask your online community to share an article or other reference content.
Keep branding voice consistent
No matter how you or your business decides to use social media pages, it’s important that each post and interaction showcases your brand and is consistent with your brand’s voice and personality. A business’s presence on social media illustrates their promise to the customers. The brand itself represents the organization and what they value. It’s important to remember that social media is an extension of the brand, and business, as a platform to interact with customers and potential clients.
Within social media platforms the brand should be consistent in the following areas:
- Voice and personality
- What the business and brand stands for or represents
- How the business is different than any other in their field
- How the brand is represented through logos, colors, and images