Posting to social media has become an integral part of many business marketing strategies. The question that I come across most often is “how do I ensure that what I am doing is correct?” and many others want to know how to track efforts.
Curating content is certainly a great way to garner attention on you social media pages and it does make it much easier to create consistent posts, but, in order to be truly successful, you have to create unique content that your followers are going to want to read.
My approach to social networking is different than many in that it is based on writing quality content and posting it to the site owners web site (blog or article location) and then pushing that information (linking, posts, etc.,) to the business owners social networking sites.
The emphasis here is on the creation of good, quality content that people will actually read (and may find value in) as I believe that this is the only true way to fully capitalize on what social networking sites can bring (value) to any business. The key has to be to develop the content and utilize the appropriate social media in order to get it in front of the intended audience for the business.
It is NOT simply a matter of creating postings on Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media, it IS about providing usable content that gets someone’s attention enough that it draws people to actually visit the posters social media page and, perhaps even to the actual web site where the original article/post actually resides. A good example is located in figure 1 in which the author has created a post with a title, an excerpt, and an appropriate image and it links to the entire article located on the authors website.
The purpose is simply…to make your web presence more valuable in terms of how search engines treat your web site. Engaging people and getting people to visit your web site not only provides a valuable service to those visitors, it increases the “value” (whether perceived or real) of the originating web site.
Can you, a business, create individual postings to social media? Well, of course you can, however, I have found that in most cases (for most businesses) you really can’t generate enough interest (people viewing/reading) in those posts within the confines of the social media “spacing” – meaning that good, quality content is more than just a few simple paragraphs and really has to have a “base” for that content.
The best example that I can use is to go to your Facebook home page (not your profile or fan page) and read through some of the “business type” postings within your newsfeeds. Once you find a few, find one (or more) that are at least interesting enough for you to click on them and see where it takes you. I am NOT talking about musicians, actors, etc., that will typically have more than a “business” posted on their Fan pages, I am specifically referring to news items or actual businesses that post news items on through their Fan pages (FB here is the example that I use as I have found that most people at least have a FB account).
A Few Words of Caution
Keep any political views and statement OFF of your company’s social media sites!
Everyone has opinions and views about a multitude of subjects which is perfectly fine, but, there is a time, a place, and a location for that type of commentary and it is NOT on your company’s social media pages. For example, look back at figure 1 again and notice the first line of this persons posting, in particular, “…feminists and other anti-father…”. The only thing that this commentary does is alienate at least part of your followers and, potentially, any other readers of this post via any social sharing.
It is perfectly fine to make a factual point, but, it is important to simply talk about the facts and not get into who may, or may not, have caused the situation from occurring.
Figure 2 is a bit different, but, follows the same line of thinking. This post, although posted correctly, has absolutely zero to do with their business and serves no purpose other than to, potentially, alienate past or current customers and will certainly keep possible future customers from even contacting the business. Keep in mind that it is not necessarily even the book title or what the book is about, it is simply that fact that this company took the time to create a post about a book at all.
The point is to put some thought into what you are posting and make sure that it has at least some relevance to your business. Unless you want to further reduce your potential target market by posting irrelevant or controversial content, then stick to topics that are at least somewhat related to your business or industry and keep any political commentary out of it.
The idea is simple; how you use social media is strictly dependent on what type of business you are in and what your ultimate objectives are. If you, for example, own a news station, you might post (directly on your Fan page) something about a story that the news station will be covering that evening – the objective; to get people to watch.
For most, the primary objective is to increase revenue – everything else is secondary.
The question becomes; how do you effectively utilize social media (with your web site) in order to increase your site’s value which, in turn, increases the quality of traffic coming to your site? That question is only relevant because your business offers a good, quality product or service and the only reason everyone that “needs” that product or service is NOT using yours is that they don’t know about it.
Social networking is NOT a quick fix or a fast way to increase traffic or revenue, it is merely a tool to use to reach your current, past, and potential customers and keep your name out there and fresh on their minds.
Since social networking is not a quick fix or even a tool that can easily be related to revenue, it becomes more of a “chore” rather than something that people see as having a real “value” to their business. When that happens, social networking simply does not get done in any kind of effective manner, or not at all. It is often times very easy to stop doing something particularly when no direct effects have been felt in terms of the bottom line.
Again, social networking is not going to immediately increase traffic to your site or revenue, what it will do is increase your web site’s overall, long term value and significance which will lead to better performance and subsequent rankings, it simply has to be done properly and consistently in order to have a positive, long term effect on your business.