Social media is still a new frontier for many marketers. With the emergence of what seems like an inordinate amount of social sites and tools, figuring out how to get started and ramp up your efforts with social media marketing can be confusing. So you’ve set up your Facebook page, Google+ page, and your Twitter profile…now what?
Here are 6 quick tips to set your organization up for social success:
1) Unless you are speaking directly to someone on Twitter, be sure to put a character before someone’s Twitter handle when tweeting at or about him/her. For example:
@LaurenEHarper You are awesome! (This is a conversational tweet that goes directly to me and only people that follow us both will be able to see this.)
. @LaurenEHarper is awesome! (This is a tweet about me that can be seen by all of your followers because there is a character in front of the @ sign.)
2) Hashtags are your friend and your enemy.
Using hashtags on Twitter is a great way explain the topic you are tweeting about (i.e. #sales), and to get your content found on Twitter. However, there IS such a thing as too many hashtags. Using too many hashtags can come off as annoying to your followers, and runs the risk of looking like spam. A good rule of thumb is to keep it to 3 hashtags per tweet. #b2b #modernmarketing #ee13
3) Share other people’s content (OPC)!
When you attend a conference or event, you’re there to hear thought leadership from multiple people speaking on a variety of different topics. Treat your social channels the same way. Provide multiple viewpoints, from multiple sources. Hint: People like it when their content gets shared! This is also a great way to network, as it can provide a great opportunity for engaging someone in conversation, and encourage others to share.
4) Create lists to segment and enhance your relevance.
Whether you’re on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+, lists are a great way to filter content. Lists allow you to follow as many people as you want, and mine the value of each of these people.
- Twitter: create lists of people based on industry, job description, customer, vendor, etc. I personally follow mostly sales and marketing people on Twitter, so I have lists of the marketing and sales folks whose tweets I know I don’t want to miss. You also can create lists based on specific keywords or hashtags. If you use third party tools such as Tweetdeck or Hootsuite, you can set those searches up as permanent columns in your dashboard. Or you can follow lists that other’s have created, which you can find on their Twitter profile.
- Facebook: On your personal Facebook page you can create lists under “friends.” This way if you want to follow your customers, colleagues, etc., you can have them all in a specific list and you won’t miss any of their updates.
- Google+: The customizable”circles” feature is a great tool to group people and content into specific categories (i.e. Social Media Experts, Marketing Influencers, Modern Marketers, etc.)
5) Repost your posts
It’s okay to tweet out an old blog post that you’ve tweeted before. Odds are not every single one of your followers will see every one of your tweets. When you come out with a new blog post, tweet about it that day, two weeks later, and then 3 months later (assuming it’s still relevant). You can even say in the tweet that it’s an older blog post, for example: “3 Ways to Engage Prospects [URL] <older but still valuable post.”
6) Take LOTS of pictures
Let’s be honest: who doesn’t love seeing pictures of themselves or people they know? Pictures are an amazing way to stay engaged with your fans, followers, and customers. The best part? They work for virtually every social channel. We at Eloqua get the most engagement on our Facebook page whenever we post a picture or a photo album. Pinterest is all about pictures, and so is Instagram. With one photo, you can post it on Instagram, tweet that out, AND have it upload to your Facebook page in one swoop. Google+ also just did a huge upgrade on their photo sharing and enhancing capabilities.
Bonus Tip: Schedule posts- but don’t lose engagement. There are a plethora of social media platforms out there that allow you to schedule posts on Twitter, Facebook, etc. (Check out Hootsuite, Tweetdeck, or Buffer- they all are free tools.) If you decide to schedule out your tweets or Facebook posts, make sure to carve out time throughout the day to respond, thank, or otherwise engage with anyone who has responded or retweeted your posts.
Looking for more social media best practices? Check out Eloqua’s Grande Guide for the Social CMO.