2010 brought on a year of social media marketing for companies of all types around the world. As we enter into 2011, social media marketing is expected to continue to take off in a whole new direction.
In 2010, many businesses created their social media profiles, and left them alone to “get traffic”. When their profiles didn’t return instant results, they gave up or turned their attention to something else. Unfortunately, social media is not a one-time thing and requires more than just the initial profile set up.
For companies who do not have social media accounts, there is no better time than the present to get started on social media. Once your profiles are set up, you don’t need to spend all day keeping them up to date, but should check in often.
What Should A Basic Profile Contain?
Most social media profiles (with the exception of Twitter) should contain the following basic information:
- Company Logo
- Company Name
- Email Address to Contact (firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com)
- Company Website Address
- Company Address (if available)
- Preferred method of contact
With this information anyone should be able to contact you at his or her own convenience.
Don’t stop there.
Most social media websites allow you to enter a short biography. Use this space to introduce social media users to your company. Give them a brief introduction to your company history, your services and who they would talk to if they were to contact you.
Some social media websites will allow you to add in your company hours, products and services. Take advantage of these fields and fill out as many of them as you can. The more information available about your company, the more a person knows about your company before giving you a call.
How Should You Update It?
In 2010 most companies got the basics setup for their social media profiles, but a lot got stuck when it came to updates. There are a variety of ways a social media profile can be updated. The first step is to create a list of things you want to promote through your social media profiles and what you want your social media users to know about your company.
News and Events:
Believe it or not, people want to know what is going on at your company. Posting about a new employee or a new project you have completed engages your social media users with your company. By sharing this information, you are inviting them into your company.
If you aren’t comfortable sharing recent company news, share some recent industry news. Customers hire you because you are the expert in your industry, but it never hurts to keep them involved with your industry. You don’t have to share information on how your job is done, but if there is industry news that they may be affected by or that might interest them, don’t hesitate to share it!
Some social media websites are dedicated to adding photos and videos. Using these websites you can add photos or videos of your products, your company or even a company event. This is another way of inviting social media users into your company’s every day life. A lot of users can connect with companies on a different level when they see that the company does have another side to their business.
Products or Services:
Another way to engage your users is posting updates about your products and services. Depending on the type of company you run, your customers or potential customers may not know or understand your full line of products and services. By posting updates with information on your products and services you are possibly introducing them into a side of your company they didn’t know.
Respond to Questions:
If there is one area that many companies have a hard time keeping up with, it’s their user interaction. Even if you decide that you don’t want to keep your social media profile updated every day, you need to check in every day. Companies run into the most trouble when someone asks a question and doesn’t get an answer.
Websites like Facebook and Twitter allow users to interact with each other. If a person visits a Facebook page and sees posts from potential customers on their wall that have gone unanswered for months on end, they are less likely to contact that company.
Simply responding to a post on your wall or on your Twitter account will let potential customers know your account is still active and that it is okay for them to contact you.
If you aren’t sure if people are paying attention to your social media profile, ask! Start posting questions to your social media users. Simple questions as “What would you like to see from us?” or “What is your favorite product we have to offer?” are a great start to engage your users.
Using your list, create a social media schedule and stick to it. Your schedule may only allow for a little bit of time each day, a little bit of time is better than no time. As you build up your profile, visitors will start to come back and will suggest your profile to their friends.
What is your favorite way to engage users on your social media profiles?