Perception is reality. That means your customers’ perception of your business is more important than your business itself. Where else do customers form those perceptions but on social media? What’s more, studies have shown a positive brand experience on social media can significantly improve customer equity. Your social media page says a lot more about your business than you think-what can you do to maximize the efficacy of your most powerful perception-shaping tool: your overall social media presence?
The content you publish on your Facebook, Instagram, or any other social media page matters. If it’s the same old tired content, you’re probably not engineering engagement. Similarly, if it lacks organization, your audience may become confused. Keep a consistent posting schedule with consistent content that aligns with your brand’s core ethos. Mix it up with entertaining, immersive multi-media like videos, pictures, and blog posts.
Remember, the ultimate goal of your social media page should be to foster real connections with your customers. What do you and your customers have in common? You’re both humans. People like to deal with people, which means your social media page should show your human side. Show off your employees, tell your brand story, and have real people there to answer questions. If all else fails, personify your product or service to showcase your brand’s humanity. Never let your audience perceive your business as a faceless, nameless entity.
Be creative and don’t be afraid to take risks: ask questions and strive for constant self-improvement. Social media can be an excellent space for customers to leave reviews. While you don’t have to respond in detail to every review, it can help to thank the reviewer for his or her business. Be transparent and accountable; if you make a mistake, accept responsibility and strive to correct it.
Your Social Media Page is a Branding Opportunity
Behind every business social media page is a brand, which means your social media presence is a powerful branding opportunity. While your goal is to amass as many followers as possible to maximize your digital exposure, don’t spread yourself thin. Instead of building pages for each social media platform, focus on the one or two most effective platforms for your specific business. You’ll be able to devote more time and effort into cultivating a more successful, engaging page. It can even help develop your brand identity!
For best results, make sure your pages are actively updated. If you decide you no longer want to use a particular platform, delete the page. If customers see your page hasn’t been updated in years, they might think you don’t care anymore-or worse: you went out of business. Make sure all contact info, including any on-page links, is up-to-date and valid. The last thing you want is to mislead your customers or give them any false information.
Your social media presence is also an opportunity to show your expertise and build trust. If you can create unique, engaging content, your audience will associate you with being noteworthy in your field. Try to get your audience emotionally invested in not only your content but your brand; after all, emotion is a primary driver of sales.
Your Social Media Should Reflect Your Goals
This one’s easy. The content you publish should reflect the goals you aspire to accomplish. If you want to sell more of a particular product or service, bring that product or service to the forefront of your content strategy. Social media is a part of your overall content marketing strategy, but it’s a significant part. Use the right social media pages to paint the most accurate portrayal of your brand possible.
Keep things positive and avoid sensitive topics. If you sell lawn equipment, for example, you should stay away from political posts. Similarly, remember to keep your personal profile separate from your business profile. At the same time, don’t publish anything on your personal profile that you wouldn’t want your customers to see or associate with your brand. We live in an age of permanence where actions have consequences. Even a post you made 10 years ago might have consequences tomorrow. Hold yourself to a higher standard.
All in all, social media is an invaluable tool, that when used right, can dramatically increase the ubiquity of your business. Stick to the fundamentals, follow a consistent posting schedule, and paint the portrayal of your brand that you want your audience to see. You can’t control how your audience perceives you, but you can control the tools they use to formulate that perception.