Social Media is not a new concept. It’s the partner to SEO for many marketers, but the important thing to remember is that social media is also a networking tool for millions of users. The mainstay of social media users are web savvy technology driven individuals who see it as a means to stay connected, meet new people, and learn about new things. Because these people who use social media are so savvy to the way of the internets…they can smell spammers and marketers a mile away. If you’re planning a social media campaign, it’s important to know how the ecosystem works, so that way you don’t end up down wind and smelling a little ripe, if you catch my drift.
The best way to get your foot in the door and start making a presence for your campaign is a strong social media profile. Your username and profile are the first things people will notice about your social media campaign, so it’s vital to represent yourself well. Below are 3 tips to insure that happens:
High Visibility & Consistency
There are thousands…literally THOUSANDS of social media sites. Everything from networking, to aggregation/news, micro blogging, video sharing…you name it, it’s out there and people are using it to stay connected socially. So, after you’ve done your homework and found the social networks you’d like to get active on, the next step is probably the most important step you can take on your journey to social media stardom: Consistency. If you decide (and I recommend that you do) to be active across multiple social media sites, you’ll greatly increase your company or personal brand’s visibility across the net. This is excellent in that it helps you to create brand awareness and drive traffic to your site. I mean, ultimately that is what we are doing here right? But even more important than simple presence on these multiple sites is consistency across them. If people are trying to identify with your brand, they need to be able to instantly tell that this profile is actually you or your company. The best way to go about making this happen is to insure that your user picture, username, and profile information is the same across all networks. This way if someone finds your twitter page, and searches for your company or name on facebook, they can find you without pause.
I know this seems kind of like a no-brainer. But really folks, be ACTIVE. The point of social media is not for you to sell your product (mean, not directly in that sense) the point is to connect with like minded individuals. Use social media how it’s MEANT to be used. Making a profile on 147 different social networks will do nothing for you aside from waste time. Instead, pick 5 or so that interest you. Build out your profile (making sure it is consistent with other profiles you’ve built) and start learning how people use that particular social network. Add some friends and start getting involved. Be sure to devote some time to each one daily.
No one likes a taker. People like givers. People like balance. Social media is a lot of give and take. There is an art to self promotion and balancing it with genuine interaction and relationship building. People want to build a relationship, which is why they use social media in the first place. So, in order to make your social media campaign work, you’ve got to support the community. You can do this in a number of ways, depending on the networks you’re involved in. The best way to make this strategy work for you is to offer good, viable content to the users of that community. Simply linking to your site over and over again will get you flagged as a spammer and ousted from the community. Instead, offer real content, link to blogs you like, and sprinkle in your message whenever possible. It’s a small idea that can really take you far in your social marketing campaign. A concept that works well here is reciprocity. If someone links to your site, or comments on your blog, return the favor. Give and take. Isn’t that what makes the world work?
These are just three of many ways to make your social media presence a strong one. Take the time to get to know your network and most importantly, have fun with it. That’s what social media is about.