1. Spend Time on Your Profile
Creating a social account is just Step 1. Update your profile photo to one that reflects your business (it could be your logo, team, mascot etc) – remember, a picture is worth a thousand words. Don’t forget to fill out your About/Bio with a one or two-liner. Tell your followers what you’re about and why you’re important. You can also add a link to your website or blog.
2. Create a Plan and Set Goals
Having a plan seems like a given, but you’ll be surprised at the number of companies who skip this milestone. Have a plan and set some goals. Make sure your targets are realistic and something you can commit to. It could be as simple as tweet everyday or gain 5 new connections every week.
3. Use Multiple Social Networks
Each social tool has its own strengths and weaknesses. The same post in one channel might not do as well in another. Do you research and go where your audience is. The social staples are Twitter and Facebook but there are many others better suited for specific audiences.
4. Be Consistent
Whatever social network you’re on, make sure to keep your message clear, stick to your brand and speak in the company voice. It’d be awfully confusing to have 1 network posting in a casual tone and another in a formal tone.
5. Give Relevant, Shareable Content
Your network is there to listen to your thoughts and gain some knowledge. They don’t want to be sold to. If you educate, inform and entertain your followers, you’ll gain their trust and be seen as an expert in your industry. Once you’ve gained their trust, they’ll research what you do on their own.
6. Be Engaging
Social media isn’t just a one-time thing. You need to communicate regularly with your network. Some companies talk 20-30 times a day and some only once or twice. Find a schedule that’s manageable for you and stick to it.
7. Listen and Respond
Being social is just as much about listening as is it talking. Hear what your network is telling you. Respond to every interaction. A recent study found that 24% of users who contacted a business using social media expect a reply within 30 minutes, regardless of when the contact was made. 42% expect a response within an hour, even if it’s night or the weekend.
8. Think Before You Tweet
This is should be the disclaimer on every social profile but most specially your business one. Remember, everyone you’re connected to can see what you write. So, if you’ve had a couple of beers, it might not be the best time to send the e-world an update.
9. Don’t Forget to Say “Thank You”
It’s kind of a big deal when people promote you to their own network. Show them some love by following them back, liking their page and thanking them online. A little effort goes a long way.
10. Be SOCIAL
Being SOCIAL means you’re online brand is Sincere, Open, Collaborative, Interested, Authentic and Likeable. Social media is just another way to easily reach your customers and industry peers. Be human and enjoy the conversation.