I don’t think I’m alone when I state that I have a love/hate relationship with social media.
I like the idea of it. When I first joined Facebook I was right into it – mind you I was travelling a lot and had nice pictures to post and stories to tell. How life has changed… and I unlike some out there enjoy writing, so I’m sure maintaining a blog is a great way for me to express myself.
I work virtually (from home utilising Cloud based applications) and am also a mother of young children. I sometimes don’t get out much. Being able to catch up with people online when I need it makes me feel less isolated. However, I know that’s exactly what I don’t like about social media too.
There’s a disconnection when you can’t see someone and their physical reactions. Face-to face contact is easily the best way to fully communicate with others. Also, I find a majority of social media posts to be disingenuous. They only show the best or the worst moments, which results in the reader feeling either unnecessarily concerned for others, or sorry for their own poor/sad/boring life. It’s amazing how this tiny snap shot can make a mundane life appear very dramatic or somewhat “Kardashian” like.
I also have a tendency to read posts, but I don’t generally’ “comment” or “like” what is written, resulting in an unrecognised connection. My “friend” has no idea that I caught up with what’s happening in their Facebook world, or seen their Instagram picture, so they don’t know that I’m there, watching their every post like a stalker, in the bushes, outside their house.
The worst part of social media is easily – click bait. So desperate for people to visit that you’re going to lure followers with some ‘You’ve got to read this!’ head line? Admittedly sometimes I get roped in, and of course I proceed to loose half an hour of my life waiting for all the adverts to accost me, only to give up because I’m sick of waiting for the actual content. Pa-lease. Stop playing these silly games!
There are those that do well with social media, but generally they commit a lot of themselves to it, mentally and physically, in order to ensure those following pay attention. This is the aspect of social media that makes me unconvinced I want to actively be a part of it. I’d want to make sure I am worthy of following, and the time it would take is daunting for me. I’m the type of person who innately cares about what people think of me, so putting something out there that could potentially be ripped to shreds by not just those notorious online trolls, but my nearest and dearest is TERRIFYING.
I also have this tendency to feel uncomfortable about knowing too much about the personal lives of others, so to write a blog about myself and my thoughts seem somewhat contrary. Unfortunately for me though, I am now a business owner and it is going well. Not that going well is unfortunate, but if you want to keep up with the play in my line of work you have to be social media savvy. In fact, my business coach couldn’t believe that I specialise in Business Support yet had no Facebook page… Whoops.
She’s right. Facebook in particular can be a great advertising tool for businesses, particularly if you’re good at it. Not too many posts that followers feel spammed, enough that you show up in feeds. It has the potential to drum up business that you would otherwise have missed out on simply because of your ability to connect with them within this platform.
Social media can help:
- Creating brand and/or product awareness
- Build an interested community
- Showcase your expertise
- Stay top of mind
- Increase your reach
- Generate traffic to your website
- Build new partnerships
- Provide customer service
- Increase sales, and more
Many of the businesses I work for are struggling with their social media presence, so I listed some tips that I’ve picked up on my own journey to help you all out.
10 Ways to Improve Your Social Media Presence
- Understand what you are using – Using Facebook as an example, not all followers see your posts. In fact it may be as little as 16%. Facebook Edgerank determines what posts appear in a Facebook user’s news feed, and the algorithm considers affinity, weight and time decay. So learn about the platform, particularly if you have set up your own web or Facebook page because the analytics are important.
- Don’t violate! – In particular, stay up to date with the Facebook Terms and Conditions as a violation may result in your page being shutdown
- Post regularly – Not posting regularly enough can leave a negative impression, whilst posting too frequently can have the same effect. My very naughty trick is watch a business in the industry I’m working with, and copy their social media strategy
- Use photos whenever you can – attractive, professional images can be downloaded to capture attention more effectively than words. Followers are more likely to pay attention to a post with an image. Once again, don’t violate, but there are lots of copyright free image websites out there
- Ensure content is timely – Make sure you engage in today’s news. Look at what your followers are talking about and engage. A lot of social media managers use applications like Google Alerts. It’s important to remember to credit check before posting though i.e. no promoting “alternative facts”…
- Ask for your follower’s opinions – This is the easiest way to engage with your followers, but you must stay engaged. Ask a question and then posting the findings later shows them you are interested in what they have to say
- Make it relevant and interesting– Some businesses post topics on their page that is unrelated to their core business. Your followers are here to be informed on what you do, so stick to that subject. Post what you find interesting, because your followers will probably think it is too
- Schedule posts – Sometime I find a lot of content I would like to share but don’t want to bombard my followers, so I set it to be shared at a later date. Try this easy to follow guide – Schedule Shares on Facebook
- Use grammar – It’s important and I shouldn’t need to explain why, but I will. You can’t come across as being uneducated, particularly if you are in business. Some writers can be very comma heavy. If in doubt utilise a free proof reading services online and it will do most of it for you
- Invest in your page – You can promote your posts so they have more reach, buy a Facebook ad for targeted promotion, and give special offers to followers. Spending a bit on your page can pay off. Try 80% original content and 20% promotional.
Hopefully this helps you with marketing your business on social media. If you’re still not convinced that this forum is for you, feel free to get in touch and we’ll do it for you.