We regularly hear from entrepreneurs, forward-thinking companies and the media that a business can’t survive in 2016 without investing in social media.
And we couldn’t agree more – businesses that naively shrug off the importance of social media are at risk of being left behind. Not only is it essential to engage customers, efficiently manage dialogue and increase brand awareness, it’s also a useful way to connect with journalists, peers and potential employees.
But it must be executed consistently, with the right tone of voice for your business and with a clear social media ‘champion’ in place.
It would be easy to give the job of social media management to an intern or work experience student that uses Facebook and Instagram in their personal time – but that’s not always the best option.
You must carefully consider who is the right person for the job. Take into account who has great insight into the business, and who might be creative enough to keep coming up with fresh relevant content (it’s not as easy as some might first think!).
So here are a few tips from us to for managing a social media account for business:
- Think about the platforms that are appropriate – Not every social media platform will be relevant for your business. Think about who your audience is and where they interact – if your company is B2C, then Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube are worth considering. Whereas if your target audience is B2B, LinkedIn and Twitter may be more relevant.
- Establish a tone of voice – Do you want to portray your company as fun? Professional? Quirky? Positive? Consider your industry and target audience, and how they would expect you to communicate – and then be consistent!
- Use a scheduling tool – We use Hootsuite, but there are many options out there. It’s much easier to schedule content in advance, all in one go, for the week ahead, and then respond to comments when timely. We’d recommend allocating a couple of hours per week, in order to give it a good go.
- Follow the right people – On Twitter, research who you should be following – don’t just follow lots of irrelevant accounts! Your potential customers and employees, industry influencers, media outlets, individual journalists, suppliers and clients are all likely to be on there, so it’s worth taking the time to follow them. And don’t forget to say hi – a simple tweet could be an introduction to a great working relationship.
- Don’t just promote your own products/services – We don’t think there’s anything worse than a business account that only posts about their own products and services. Curate content from your trade media and give an opinion – this will show that your business has an understanding of the whole industry.
There’s a real knack to managing a social media account and don’t beat yourself up if you haven’t grasped it yet!