Last month, we began a discussion around how to drive engagement on social media. Many organizations know they want to share ideas and insights and build relationships via their social media platforms, but don’t know where to start. As you will recall, a critical starting point revolves around traffic boosting.
So now you have the audience, what do you do next? This is where the qualitative piece of the puzzle fits in: sharing valuable content.
There are several effective ways to do this:
Create informative content that adequately represents your brand
Remember, your brand is represented by what you post—and that includes expert, relevant content. While you want to showcase your expertise with your own expert content, curated best-of-industry content is also acceptable. This might come in the form of videos, case studies, blogs, newsletters, white papers, e-briefs and more. But keep in mind that selling is NEVER acceptable when it comes to social media. A description or promotion of your company offerings or any type of self-promoting content is not a best practice. These platforms should be used for educating and engagement only.
Create a blog and share
A great way to showcase the experts within your company is to begin with one blog for your organization to which multiple staff members can contribute. It makes not only for a more robust read, but by making employees around the organization part of the process, they feel valued. But don’t just post it and forget about it. Share the content again on your social networks, keeping in mind that each social network has specific uses and posting best practices. And don’t forget to add share buttons to your blog; this makes it easy for readers to share in their respective their networks.
Here’s a quick guide to posting a blog entry on each of the top three B2B social networks for technology companies:
This platform is where you should be posting and re-posting multiple times. With Twitter, a majority of your followers will not see your first, second or even third tweet—so you need to keep going. The newsfeed runs very quickly on this platform. Follow these simple steps:
· Post your blog link once a day at different times for the first five days.
· Change the headline with each post.
· Do not repeat the same photo, particularly if it’s a part of your blog.
· After the first week, post twice for that week.
· In week 3, begin to taper it off.
· In a month or two later, you can repost it if it’s still relevant.
Here, it’s best to post only once—but do it at an optimal time for your audience. You can re-post again a week or two later. Change the headline, but reference that you are re-posting it. For example: “In case you missed it the first time, here’s our look at how to…”
LinkedIn Company Page:
LinkedIn is another platform that is slower and gives viewers more time to see your post in their newsfeed. Here is probably best to post only once.
Posts with photos, graphics and illustrations get up to 80% more views and engagement than those without. In fact, according to Buffer, Tweets with images get 150% more shares. Here’s a great resourcethat will help you make your social media posting more visual and eye-catching (and it’s also free).
“At the end of the day,” says Kathy Dunlay of New England Sales & Marketing, “social media for business is not about followers, it’s about meeting the right people with whom you can have a mutually beneficial relationship. There is nothing valuable about a following that does not engage with you and ultimately help your business thrive.”
So remember to take a breath, and in between pushing out your content, be sure to engage in one-to-one communication and have a live conversation. Only then will social media fulfill its promise of expanding your network.
[Leadarati helps IT firms drive value and increase opportunities through social, digital and online communications.]