5 Questions Businesses Should Ask While Evaluating Their Social Media Campaign
When it comes to social media, frustration and confusion are the words that often comes to mind for businesses beginning to develop a social media presence.
Almost all companies that are new to this marketing medium and have not gone through social media training have yet to see a return from their involvement in social media.
The problem is two-fold.
- First, establishing a social media presence takes time and continual effort. You have to be consistent in your involvement with social media and remember that returns don’t occur overnight.
- Secondly, you have to make sure that you are using social media in a way that makes sense for your business and industry.
If you are not sure how your current social media campaign is performing, ask yourself these simple five questions:
1. ARE YOU USING THE RIGHT PLATFORM?
First, remember that there are a variety of social platforms and networks for you to consider – most notably for local businesses are Google +, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. Further, within these platforms, there exist variations on the theme. For example, in Facebook, you can have multiple platforms to sound your brands trumpet. In addition, you may decide to participate in several social media platforms at the same time.
For example, if you have a fitness center, you may want to use your YouTube channel to publish videos on how to perform certain exercises, or tape specific classes you offer there, while using Twitter to build a sense of community through congratulating your followers on completing a hard workout.
2. HAVE YOU SCRAPPED PAST ATTEMPTS?
You also need to remember that whatever you take on has to be maintained and updated regularly. This can take up valuable time and human resources. Consistency is key in social. If you don’t think you will be able to maintain various platforms (or you have already started and stopped using a platform) be sure to erase or delete those accounts. Otherwise, you stand the risk of eroding your brand value when a customer (either current or potential) stumbles across your forgotten account. Instead, make sure that what you have is the best it can be and do away with anything that you are not actively using and promoting.
3. ARE YOU PROVIDING THE TYPE OF INFORMATION AND INTERACTION THAT YOUR AUDIENCE CRAVES?
Ask yourself what it is that your audience would want to read, not what you want to tell them. Providing discounts or having giveaways can be useful, but you must have more substance than that. Consider posting facts about your company, your community, your industry, your brand, or its products. Think of the tidbits of information you encounter everyday that make you stop and say, “Really?” Examples include fun facts about how long you have been in business, what happens “behind the scenes”, why your business operates as it does (e.g. why spin class was canceled on Tuesdays, why you don’t serve chocolate bagels, why you buy local, why legal documents are presented in blue card stock), etc.
Just remember, social media is all about being social. That is why we call it social media. This is not a platform for you to sale, sale, and sale. If you want to do that go advertise on a billboard or run a radio commercial.
4. ARE YOU LISTENING TO YOUR AUDIENCE?
When they make a post, do you respond? Do you respond in a timely manner? Do you stay on top of things when your company is mentioned on other websites, blogs, social media, etc., and make relevant comments to that effect (on that site and yours)?
Social media has developed because of the continued interaction it affords. This is what web 2.0 is all about. Its purpose is not to simply broadcast, but rather give people a voice in things they would otherwise not be privy to.
5. DO YOU ALLOW YOUR FOLLOWERS TO HAVE A VOICE?
Similarly, make sure that you give your audience a voice. Ask open-ended questions, run surveys and polls, include them in new product decisions, etc. – the more things like this you do, the more valued your audience will feel. A two-way street of communication is imperative, as interaction is the most fundamental part of a successful social media campaign. If you miss out on this, you’re already out of the game.
On a monthly basis you should be asking yourself these five questions:
- Are we using the right platform?
- Have you scrapped past attempts?
- Are your providing the type of information and interaction that your audience craves?
- Are you listening to your audience?
- Do you allow your followers to have a voice?
Social Media can be a key part of growing your business and brand to attract existing and potential consumers. Remember, retention of customers is growth! Internet marketing for businesses isn’t just about having a website, it includes being findable in multiple places when consumers are looking for your product or service.
Making sure your social media is “dialed in” will lead to retaining and attracting more business.