8 Essential Tips for Social Media Success [part 1]

social media success

l tired of reading articles or books on how to use social media that don’t really tell you anything? Me too.

Be engaging. How? Be interesting. What does that look like? Respond to responses. No kidding.

I’ve got 8 practical, put-into-action tips for you that will make a real difference in your business’ social media strategy. Just so I keep your attention, I’ll break them up into 4 articles with 2 tips in each.

Ready to propel your company’s online presence into the stratosphere? Here we go.

1. The “Eyes” Have It

The vast majority of people are visual creatures. Otherwise television commercials wouldn’t be so incredibly expensive, billboards wouldn’t exist, and your mail wouldn’t be filled with junk fliers every day. Do I even need to mention YouTube’s popularity?

You must find a way to be visual, even if you don’t sell a product that you can take a picture of. The two most effective ways to do this? Pinterest and infographics.

Facebook may be the largest social site, but Pinterest is the fastest growing. Why? Because users can scan it very quickly visually and find what is interesting to them. If the image grabs their attention, they will then read the information behind it.

Infographics are the most viral form of sharing on the web today, because the audience gets the information you are trying to convey presented in a visually attractive package that doesn’t really require any extra clicking or reading. If Pinterest isn’t a perfect fit for your company, learn how to leverage infographics on other sites. Quickly.

2. You Are Who You Associate With

Your mom always told you this (or she should have). Perception is reality, and if you are associating with the wrong crowd, people will assume that you are part of that crowd or, at the very least, that you approve of them.

As a business this is trickier than choosing your online “friends” as an individual is. You don’t want to alienate potential clients, but you also don’t want to let them affect your reputation negatively.

There are two must-do’s when it comes to your professional or company account. The first is to moderate comments on your blog or social account. This is a daily, ongoing process that must be kept up. Letting your online reputation be ruined is easier than falling off a log if you don’t.

Hint: the most effective way to monitor your reputation is with some good sentiment analysis software.

The second is to try to fix the situation. If you have negative feedback, it is imperative that you engage the poster of said feedback and try to turn them from a detractor to a promoter.

Imagine a time when you had a problem with a retailer and complained to them. We have all had such situations. Their customer service department likely responded in one of two ways: either they told you “Sorry, that’s the way it is”, or they went out of their way to make you a happy customer.

If their response was similar to the first option, chances are you don’t do business with them anymore. You probably have shared the bad experience with others many times over as well.

If they made a point of doing whatever they could to fix the situation, however, I’ll bet that you left satisfied, or even happy. Even if nothing changed! When people know that you care and will do what you can to serve them, the results are often less important than the effort.

Now Do It

Homework time. In the Good Book it says to not be just a hearer of the Word, but a doer. The application here? If you read this and understand how these tips can help you, put them into action. Otherwise you are just wasting valuable time.

My challenge to you until the next post in this series is to take the two tips listed here and get busy with them.

Get your Pinterest account set up and start pinning.

Post at least 3 awesome infographics or other visually stunning and informative images on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Google+ over the next week.

Respond to all comments on your posts. (at the least, respond with a Thanks for the like/retweet/share!)

Then let me know if you see a difference. You will.