Social media is still going strong for businesses, and you'll want to continue that streak into the new year. Here are some social media best practices to keep in mind.
Keep your message focused.
It's okay to post about different things, but keep it limited to just a few topics. For example, a hotel might limit posts related to travel, local happenings, and what's happening at their hotel. Having a focused message makes it easier for you to create posts and also creates cohesive accounts that users want to follow.
Monitor your messages.
Today, people don't usually pick up the phone and call a business to have their questions answered. Instead, they turn to social media. Stay on top of your messages, mentions, comments, and reviews to answer any questions and provide customer service. Most importantly, provide timely responses. The sooner, the better.
Find your voice.
Everyone loves Wendy's sassy tweets, but does that mean your business or brand can pull that off too? Not necessarily. When trying to find your voice, think of your core audience and what they respond well to. Make sure your voice aligns with your business's core values and what you're trying to achieve.
Engage with your audience.
Social media isn't a one-sided conversation. You'll find that your audience wants to engage with you, and you'll need to make time to engage back. Aside from just monitoring messages and questions, take time to engage with people who are checking in to your business, posting photos, using your hashtag, and just talking about you on social media. Even if they aren't talking to you directly, it's still an excellent opportunity to engage with them.
Don't silence users.
The internet is free for all where everyone can voice their opinion. Attempting to censor users on your social media channels has the potential to cause even more outrage. If someone leaves a negative comment or review on your social media channels, you may want to think twice about just deleting it. You may feel that it's bad press, but it could be worse if they decide to go to a channel like Yelp or TripAdvisor and leave these same negative comments along with exposing the fact that you deleted their previous comments. Unfortunately, not everyone will have a stellar experience with your business, and you should take it as an opportunity to communicate and see how you can make it better instead of trying to erase the evidence.
It's time to start using video
Want to see engagement go up by only changing one factor? Video is the answer. Videos easily capture the attention of users, scrolling down their newsfeed, and provide more of a story than just a single image. With all the tools out there today, you can find ways of making videos quickly and inexpensively.
No matter what you do, stay away from spamming current and potential customers. They won't like it, and they'll be more likely to unfollow, block, and unsubscribe from messages. Unless a user specifically signs-up for your email list, don't just start sending them messages and emails. This is an easy way to annoy people and get on their bad side.
The social media space isn't the same as it used to be a few years ago, where you could get away with only posting organic content. Everyone, even some of the biggest brands in the world like Marriott and Coca-Cola, spends money on ads.
In other words, post what your potential customers want to see, not what you think they want to see. You may think customers want to see an inside look at your business, but if the reason they're following you is for deals, there's going to be a disconnect. It might take a while for you to figure this out, but be patient and test different types of posts out. Pay attention to which of your posts receive the most engagement.
Publish posts when your audience is online.
Yes, social media is a lot more than just posting a photo. It's about understanding your audience, what they want to hear, and making your message readily available to them. The best way to do this is to research the times your core audience is active. Post during those times!
Add call to actions on every post.
Call to actions are used in almost all marketing efforts, and they should be used on social media as well. You can encourage users to visit your website, watch a video,
Decide what you're going to measure.
No matter what your KPIs are, it would be best if you defined them from the beginning. First, determine what your goal is for social media. Is it to grow your email list? Is it to gain new customers? Is it to drive traffic to your website? These three things alone will have different KPIs.