The Art of Great Social: 5 Tips to Focus Your Social Media Strategy5 min read

Tim Hickle Author
Tim is a Digital Marketing Strategist for MilesHerndon. His primary objective is to help the growing firm build a list of digital service offerings, including inbound marketing, email nurturing, and social commerce.

the art of social mediaRemember back to when you first started getting into Social?  You were excited and thought that everyone was on Facebook and Twitter so you threw everything you had at those two platforms.  You spent a lot of time, effort and money targeting people and after about 6 months or so, you looked back only to find that the engagement wasn’t as great as you had expected.  Maybe it turns out that you’re in an industry where the majority of your customers use Pinterest to discuss what you have to offer.  Knowing where your customers are as well as what they want to see from you are incredibly important.

Take a look at your Social Media strategy.  Are you still doing sales heavy ads pushing your product on social?  Are you targeting people who actually fit the demographic you want to hit?  Have you thought about which social platform you are spending money advertising on and why?  If not, you are missing out on a lot of potential engagement.  Below are 5 tips to help you target the right audience on social. 

1.     Use the Social Platforms most relevant to your demographic

If you want to truly engage your customer base then you need to understand who those people are.  You can’t know what content to write if you don’t know who you’re writing it for.  If you really do your research and think about who your target customer base is, then you can decide who you want to engage.

Look for some sort of Mosaic Profile generation software and you can get a good idea of the mix in your area.  For example, Experian Mosaic will give you a brief description of the makeup of people in an area code.

2.     Pick a good Social Media partner

There isn’t a magic bullet that fits all businesses when it comes to how to handle your Social presence.  Every type of business is different so you will need a custom solution based on your industry, demographics and your businesses voice.

One of the most important things you have to do is decide if you are capable of managing the Social side of your business by yourself or if you should team up with a socially versed agency to make sure that the voice is consistent and professional.  It is a lot easier to make your reputation worse on Social Media than it is to improve it.  You got into business to run your business, not to spend a lot of time each day managing a Social presence and content.

3.     Ask a potential Social Media partner these questions

Consider teaming up with a strategic partner who can help you maximize your online impact, but make sure you ask them good questions like the following:

  1. What do you know about Social that I don’t?
  2. How do you measure Social Media ROI?  (And how does that ROI fit into your company’s goals?)
  3. Social is constantly changing so how do you stay on top of changes to the main platforms?
  4. Do I need to add or re-organize my team in order to work with your organization?
  5. How well do your tools integrate with my company’s other partners?  (Make sure the organization you are thinking of partnering with can easily integrate with existing vendors.)
  6.  Think of Social as a one-to-one customer relationship-If you wouldn’t do something in your place of business then you probably shouldn’t do it on Social.  If a customer was upset and started arguing loudly with you at your place of business, would you stand there and yell back with other customers around?  Of course not.  Think of Social the same way.  Try to get the conversation offline as quickly and professionally as possible.
  7. Make sure you don’t talk about yourself to much-Talking about sales or promotions you have going on all the time can repel your customers on Social Media.  They don’t care about how much you’ve sold or who just bought what.  Engage customers with information and entertainment instead.
  8. Show an interest in your community-Try posting up local stores highlighting what you have done for them recently.  People love to read about themselves and also local events so make it about them.

4.     If you want to manage your own Social profile, think about these tips

  1.  Think of Social as a one-to-one customer relationship-If you wouldn’t do something in your place of business then you probably shouldn’t do it on Social.  If a customer was upset and started arguing loudly with you at your place of business, would you stand there and yell back with other customers around?  Of course not.  Think of Social the same way.  Try to get the conversation offline as quickly and professionally as possible.
  2. Make sure you don’t talk about yourself to much-Talking about sales or promotions you have going on all the time can repel your customers on Social Media.  They don’t care about how much you’ve sold or who just bought what.  Engage customers with information and entertainment instead.
  3. Show an interest in your community-Try posting up local stores highlighting what you have done for them recently.  People love to read about themselves and also local events so make it about them.

5.     Most importantly, focus on your Brand’s Pulse

Think of your brand as a living entity.  Is your brand extroverted or introverted?  If it is an introverted brand, then Social Media probably isn’t a good fit for you.  If your brand is extroverted then there is a lot of opportunity to engage your customers through Social.

Being persuasive is great, but being evocative is better.  You shouldn’t set out to try to convince people of why your brand is “better” than one of your competitors.  You should try to show how your brand can help the consumer and cater to their basic needs.  By fulfilling their needs, you allow for two way communication rather than you trying to “persuade” them to do something.

If you focus on these five tips when devising your Social strategy, you can make sure you are on the path to doing it right the first time!

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