So, I have a LOT to say – this has always been something that people have always said about me right from when I said my first word (which I believe was “Dada” – according to my parents!) so it kind of stands to reason that I write ESSAYS for posts, newsletters, Social Media updates (I’ve often wondered how I cope with a 140 character limit on Twitter!!) and forum posts.
If you understand Social Media, then you “get” that its all about the Social element, which means talking, writing and conversation is at the heart of it (a DREAM for people like me)
Today’s post is focusing on helping those people who aren’t quite as forthcoming as me with their words and often struggle to have something to say on their Social Media accounts, and as a result their accounts get left behind dormant with no interaction. This is something that you shouldn’t do – because nobody likes to see a forgotten account – it makes people unlike or unfollow you – Remember the term “Social Media” and aside from that its a commitment to have profiles, that you must uphold if you want to get the most out of it for business.
Firstly, I would like to say this is a common problem that I see a LOT around me, in forums, people sending me tweets and emails asking for tips and advice. So if you are struggling with what to say then don’t worry, this post is designed to help you out on that
If your accounts need to be brought back to life or you need some inspiration I’d start at the top – YOUR profile – update images, thumbnails, cover photos, background images – WHY? Because you are representing something, so if you do seasonal changes, keep doing it, or you want a new lease of life – then make the changes here first. It’s a good starting point for getting conversation pumping again – because you will naturally want to tell people of the changes you’ve made – perhaps you want opinions so you post images and give it a vote – the most votes become your new cover photo (awesome way of sparking engagement)
Consistency is KEY – if you are managing a business across multiple platforms you need to ensure there is adequate identity in images used – do you have company colours, or key images as part of your brand – make sure all accounts are consistent in visual identity.
Your company information – whatever platform, review it – things change, and you might not even realise there is some out of date information in there (trust me, I know – mine is the same! I review it all the time) Have you withdrawn a service / product? or has some detail changed – its SO important to review this area on a regular basis.
Review who you are connected too (yes this can be lengthy but its necessary) with new changes coming into play all the time you should always make sure that on Facebook your LIKES are still current – you don’t want news feeds and timelines populated with irrelevant information – it might mean you miss something from an important connection. The same goes for Twitter here – the only great thing with Twitter is app’s like TwitCleaner that assess who you follow and make recommendations as to who you need to unfollow based on activity (so if YOU are dormant, you could feature in one of these reports to someone else who follows you, and may end up being unfollowed yourself!!!!)
There is no getting away from it, this is quite laborious – I have to sift through likes on both my personal Facebook and business profile, review my LinkedIn connections and also Twitter I tend to focus on one at a time, get that updated and move onto the next.
In doing these activities you are inadvertently giving yourself inspiration for things to talk about, which is why I’ve suggested that you carry out these actions first if you are stuck or struggling.
Once you’ve given your various profiles a once over, you will need to start thinking of things to say so heres a few things I’ve put together to help you ….. I spend a lot of time looking around me at what other people update, tweet and generally talk about across so many different types of businesses I think that anyone who is struggling with this will be able to resonate with a lot of these, and apply to their profiles.
- Share updates when new posts go live on your blog or you add new content to your website
- Industry news – this is relevant and people who follow you will want to know whats going on around them
- Retweet employee / customer / peers tweets that are helpful to your followers, or share updates of a simliar vein on Facebook & LinkedIn
- Ask opinions about major events around you – Sporting Events, Politics (taboo i know, but Obama election was a HUGE talking point on Social Media), Celebrities, World News and even things local to your business and sector – people LOVE to give their opinions – especially over Social Media
- Fun facts and history about your industry or company – You could make it like a little quiz or even run a Facebook poll – or even blog update each day and then post the link and ask people to comment / reply
- Do you have visitors check into your business on FourSquare or are you set up on Facebook as a premises you can “Check-In” too ? Ask them to check in and then make a point of thanking them when they have done.
- Tweet / Instagram / Upload to Facebook about funny things that happen in your office or business or quote funny things staff say – I often do things like this when I am in the office of the family business things happening around me – normal stuff, sometimes funny and people like to see it … People like to see some personality and also that you are “REAL”
- Share photos of stuff happening in your business and pictures of staff – A great way of doing this is runa ”Focus On” with staff members, again this can be done on a blog or even via a Facebook photo upload and then a written update (although my emphasis would be on a company blog) with a teaser on Facebook or elsewhere – ideally you want a click through to your website.
- Be sure to respond to questions or concerns from your connections – Don’t leave it ages to reply – people can get in touch in many ways – Direct Messages on Twitter, mentions, Facebook PAGE messages, Facebook walls – even messages to personal profiles – if they are raising a question you think people could learn from SHARE IT publicly for all to see and learn from
- Your new products or services (do this very sparingly) I like to give a generic here of 1 promotional update for every 10 non related ones (which means you can show a little personality!)
- When people write to you, write back publicly – Start a conversation – be it on a Facebook wall post or publicly on Twitter, or a LinkedIn update ….. (unless it’s a spammer)
- Share famous/motivational quotes that apply to your industry or that you just like …..
- Share when it’s a specific day, like Bring your pet to work day! (a Favourite of mine!!!)
- Share birthday greetings, and holiday wishes for public holidays …. Even ASK people what their favourite holiday is?
- Post links to funny videos
- Ask opinions about possible new products or services and listen to what they have to say – otherwise known as MARKET RESEARCH!!!
- Get local and share events and happenings in your local community – speak to local schools, supermarkets, even local newspapers for information on whats happening – in the world now a lot of people are using Social Media, so theres a chance you can connect and engage with it.
- Be helpful and educational; give tips and tricks that are relevant to your niche / industry – answer questions, refer people to the right place ….. It pays to be helpful it really does.
- Share new great music you’re enjoying – I do this a LOT – granted a lot of people don’t like the music i’m into, but its good to share – gives people another dimension to YOU – which is important – people need to buy into YOU
- Share when something awesome happens to a staff member outside of work – I can’t WAIT to tell the world that my niece will be arriving soon – double headed sword here as my brother is a colleague (FYI she’s due April 2013 – so keep an eye out!)
- Comment on conversations on other pages around you – this is a BIG one – if your there and helpful, people will wander over to see you – curiosity killed the cat remember!
- Run little contests on Twitter, but be sure to follow the guidelines
- If you attend an industry event, share the information – check it out beforehand, if its big enough there maybe a live hashtag on twitter people are arranging meet ups prior (YES this does happen!!!!)
- Offer thanks to those who leave a review or comment on your blog
Don’t be frightened to add some personality to your words – as long as its appropriate and you are acting within guidelines as set by your company (if they have a Social Media policy)
As someone who loves Social Media first and foremost as a “punter” or “consumer” I love nothing more than seeing some identity, rather than link after link that means nothing too me.
Remember I’m ALWAYS here to help and you can get in touch with me in a variety of ways should you want some advice or have a question you want answering …..
Have a great day!