Our Gift to You: Your Free Social Media Supercharge
It’s December, and we couldn’t let you leave without a present. Over the next few weeks, we’re sharing our best social media re-vamp tips that will inspire a fresh take on your SM approach throughout the new year.
You already have active social media channels, and those channels might be helping you meet specific goals, such as increasing the visibility of your organization, cultivating leads, and boosting attendance at your events.
Whether or not this is the case, there is always room to supercharge these efforts by comprehensively reviewing your current social media efforts and making improvements. That’s not easy to do given the many tasks, relationships, and goals that command your focus every day.
These tips are designed to bring clarity to your social media upgrade. All of our tips address fundamentals that are proven to work when executed consistently over the course of a year. This is about the long game rather than viral explosions of success.
Tip 1 – Choosing your channels
Some organizations choose social media channels based on what they are comfortable with, what they have been exposed to before, and what’s easiest to execute on. It’s possible that this is working for you, but watch what happens when you step outside your comfort zone and really analyze the options.
Your choice in social media channels should be based on where your ideal audience spends time online. That might not be Facebook. Many businesses in the United States have a Facebook business page. Some have a personal profile on Facebook that is a substitute for a business page, where the audience has to friend you instead of following you. Either way, it’s important to know that Facebook loses over 2 million users per year, so you might want to reconsider your efforts there. If your audience loves Facebook, it’s worth staying and cultivating further, keeping in mind that eventually, you’ll need to revisit that decision as Facebook goes on life support.
Instagram has seen a lot of growth in recent years. For a long time, users viewed it as more authentic and less ad-driven than Facebook. Now that Facebook owns Instagram, that has changed. Ads have grown and the content stream is diluted. At the same time, Instagram Stories and IGTV are growing. If your audience is still using Instagram heavily, those video streams are valuable.
Linkedin has changed its algorithm and is seeing success that it has never had before. Users in the professional sphere are checking Linkedin every day and engaging with content there. Posts and articles are the two formats for sharing Linkedin content (short-form and long-form) and should not be neglected!
Reddit is seeing a surge in use, and while few businesses have engaged on Reddit as a brand, it’s time to take another look. Not only can you create a topical sub-Reddit, you can also post and engage anywhere you like on Reddit to connect with people’s with aligned interests. Reddit goes deep and personal with engagement as few other platforms can.
As you research and review channel options, keep these things in mind:
- Make choices based on what your audience prefers. If you don’t know, find out.
- If someone on your team is pushing for choices based on their personal preference and comfort, educate them on how this will hinder success.
- Dig into the data. What do the numbers say about the future of your chosen platforms? Are your selections data-driven?
Tip 2 – Cohesive branding
Your social media profiles must be polished and professional, even if you need to hire a graphic designer to make profile pictures and cover photos that represent your brand well. All your channels should include the company’s logo in your profile picture. If your logo doesn’t fit in that space neatly, a new version needs to be designed that aligns with your primary logo but also fits the space. Your cover image needs brand alignment as well, even if you change it out frequently.
If details like this seem like a hassle, it’s time to transform your perspective. Every field that can be filled in your profile should be filled, as this optimizes user engagement, helps them find you, and boosts SEO for that profile. If the profile allows you to add a description of your business, show office hours, list upcoming events, or add any other information at all, fill these fields.
It’s all about the details! There is no “set it and forget it” when it comes to social media.
Tip 3 – Developing audience profiles
It’s natural to believe that you understand and know your online audience. And you might know them to some extent or even fairly well. It’s good to put it into writing by developing audience profiles. Each piece of social content created should match up to your audience members and their priorities.
There will never be a single type of audience member. Get a handle on them by listing out the qualities you know they have and give each profile an identity. As content is planned and created, visualize the profiles you are making content for and stay focused on them.
Ideally, you will survey your audience to hone in on the details that will illuminate the audience profiles you develop. Facts always trump assumptions. The biggest brands in the work – airlines, car manufacturers, hotel chains – find new information about their audience when they conduct surveys. Let surveys do the work for you, and deepen your understanding so you can excel.
By default, some businesses create content that internal team members prefer and enjoy. The company’s content creators might be internally-oriented. That’s fun, but you might be missing the mark. If posts are political in that they are designed to spark the favor of company leadership, then you’re missing out on what your real audience may want to see. Social media content should never be created to make your leadership feel good about themselves. Instead, leaders in your organization must be educated so they know how to assess your social media channels properly.
Stay tuned for some more great stuff in the next post, where we will cover assessing your resources, deciding on frequency and creating a content calendar.