It is important to have a concrete strategy before you start any marketing campaign, and social media is no different. When you are getting started, ask yourself what your goal is. The reality is that your goal should not immediately be to sell more product through social media. The goal should be to engage, interact with, and make an impression on the consumer. This can be a difficult task, especially when social media is foreign to you.
Of course, it is not enough to just have a strategy, it is also essential to know how to use particular networks to maximize your social media potential. I have chosen to focus on Facebook for this blog. These are some pretty easy-to-follow dos and don’ts that, if used as an overall posting strategy, should help you increase your fan base and the amount of people who see your posts. (Refer to our blog post on the Last Actor Algorithm to understand why these two things are not necessarily correlated.) Always remember that results will not be immediate and you will need to be patient.
- Post content that engages the reader (earn likes, shares, comments).
- Post frequently, but not constantly (6-12 hours apart, but not in the middle of the night!).
- Reply to commenters who engage with your post.
- Use pictures, videos, and links at all costs. Engagement, and thus impressions, will rise exponentially.
- Upload videos when possible (no YouTube links). The image associated with the video is much larger and more enticing to click.
- Use person tagging when mentioning a person or a business
- Use hashtags (there is no evidence that this is gaining traction yet, but you want to be at the forefront when it does).
- Ask open-ended questions (people love to share on social media, so give them an opportunity to do so).
- Post so much that people are annoyed or you get unliked. (Keep an eye on your insights—it will tell you likes as well as unlikes. If you see an unusual number of unlikes, check what you posted that day to see if there was something that could be considered offensive or spammy.)
- Use “clickbait”—i.e. cute pictures of kittens that have no connection to the brand (possible exception is when it is done in a tongue-in-cheek sort of way). Better off leaving this to the pros.
- Post so much content that it becomes overwhelming.
- Pander (nobody wants you begging for likes or shares).
- Have duplicate posts/content (this is a matter of keeping organized when scheduling posts). You can, however, share content from your page on your personal account.
Glossary of Facebook Terms
Comment – Exactly what it sounds like. When someone comments on a post.
Like – When a user actively clicks to show approval for your post. Least invasive and easiest form of engagement.
Share – When a person shares your post on their own wall. This will allow your post to be seen by their followers.
Tagging – When you put the name of someone or something into a post with a link to their Facebook page. This is done by typing @nameofbusiness. When you start typing the name, it will populate a list of pages to choose from.
Impressions – The number of people who have had your post displayed to them. Also referred to as Reach.
Engagement – When a user takes an action with your post. Any click, share, like, or comment is considered engagement. Not all engagements are created equal. The power of engagement from most to least powerful goes in this order: share, comment, like, click.
Hashtag – Invented by Twitter, this will allow you to make a particular word or phrase in your post clickable and searchable. Simply put a # in front of the word or phrase. #prettyeasytodo
Newsfeed – The page where people see posts from people they are connected to. This is the page you are on when you first sign in to Facebook.
Timeline – This is where someone can write a public message directed at you. If you go to a person’s page, you are able to write on their wall. Anybody can see this. This was previously and is still sometimes referred to as someone’s wall.