How to Uncover the Mystery Shrouding Your Social Media SuccessOctober 29, 2015
Imagine that you and your company have been on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram – you name it – for ages now, but your social engagement levels and social reach are stagnant. Spooky, isn’t it?
Don’t panic. It’s not too late to track down the problem and to freshen up your social media strategy. But before digging up solutions, here are several questions that you should ask yourself to discover what’s keeping potential followers at bay:
- Are you tracking your analytics? Analytics are your eyes and ears into the social media realm. By ignoring them, you miss seeing the early signs of the things haunting your success.
- Are you being yourself? Maybe you tend to clam up, or sound out of touch, as you try to remain professional online. Or, does your company dish out more flashy advertisements than other “treats” on social media—setting itself up to be as unpopular as the neighbor who only hands out toothpaste on Halloween?
- Are you disguising your brand message? On the flip side, maybe you’re all sorts of fun and experimental, but your brand message is unclear. Is it possible that you’ve sacrificed consistency and clarity for creativity?
- Are you talking with people? We’ve all committed this sin before: talking at people (and we’re not talking @), rather than with them. Does this sound familiar? Safe to say, you wouldn’t be the first to admit that you’re expecting more attention from your followers than you’re willing to show them.
- Are you transparent? Are you utilizing social media to give your supporters a clear, no-nonsense view into your company’s culture and beliefs? When you receive complaints or false accusations, do you optimize social media to offer solutions, come clean, and rebuild broken relationships?
- Are you visible all year round? Perhaps you have a bad habit of fading in and out of existence on social media. You post 20 times in week 1, but only five times in week 2. What’s the reason for this? Are you lacking a set social media calendar and/or strategy for you and your team?
- Do you talk the part? The people who do Halloween well, walk the walk and talk the talk of whomever they’re dressing up as. While your company might be outfitted for Instagram, Twitter, and other social channels, have you embraced the unique language of each channel?
#SocialHacks to Boost Success
1. Track your analytics. Monitor them in real time using a platform like ours to find everything from peak engagement moments to social media affinities to specific comments made about your company. You’ll gain insight into how people view your company, and avoid going on a witch hunt looking for your weak points – your users may tell you exactly what’s wrong!
2. Define the purpose of your social channels. This practice will help your team understand the motivations behind your channels (e.g., is your purpose to improve customer service? Increase brand recognition? Advertise your products? All three?) and enjoy an easier time agreeing on a plan to advance your message and reach your target audiences.
3. Strategize with your team. Brew together a content marketing calendar on Excel or Google Drive (or if you have a bigger team, explore more advanced services like CoSchedule). Don’t forget to create a separate social media calendar! These calendars will help your team stay “on goal” while posting on social, and maintain a consistent brand voice and personality even while be creative.
4. Create distinct social media campaigns. Beyond content calendars and social media strategies, consider planning social media campaigns around holidays, special events, topics, etc.
Case study: Not too long ago, Oreo transformed itself from “self-involved advertiser” to “nimble content creator” by a.) giving its cookie personality, and b.) launching culturally relevant campaigns, like its 2012 “Daily Twist” campaign commemorating its 100-year anniversary. Every day for 100 days, Oreo posted an image of its cookies styled to honor a special moment in history related to that date. Oreo is now lauded as one of the best social marketers in the world.
5. Use the medium that suits you best. For example, if you’re like GoPro and have mastered visual media—spotlight visuals on all your accounts. Capitalizing on your strengths will help you build brand reputation and recognition, plus showcase your company’s true colors without coming across as disingenuous.
6. “Humanize” your company by engaging with users. Show your users love so they’ll feel a connection with your company, not just an obligation to it. Join their conversations, ask for their opinions, and crowdsource their material. A good rule of thumb is: be where your customers are.
7. Practice honesty and availability. Take NBA for example. Under @NBAOfficial, the organization offers instant replays and real-time clarification of calls in-game for confused (or plain-out defiant) fans.
Likewise, in times of crisis or confusion, keep calm and leverage social media. Increase your transparency and focus on regaining trust.
8. Channel the uniqueness of every platform. Remember, no two social channels are the same. While Twitter encourages instant and frequent posting – Facebook does not. And while LinkedIn is for the business folk—Instagram is the hotspot for U.S. teens. To really stay ahead of the social media game, you must tailor your social strategy to reflect these discrepancies.
Feeling relieved? We hope that these “tricks” come as a nice treat to your social supporters.