Are there rules of engagement in social media? If so, which ones apply to small businesses?
Thirteen entrepreneurs share practical tips on how to best engage customers using social media.
1. Always stay informed.
“Social media is a constantly evolving field, so staying up to date on your knowledge is key! Use your social media platforms to show off your knowledge and skills and to establish your company as an expert in your industry. Research what’s trending and establish a presence in the new networks as soon as you can.”
2. Dole out an incentive.
“Social media is all about incentives. Providing real value on your Facebook page, for example, is going to give fans something to like, share or comment about. If someone can find all the same information you have on your Facebook page on your company website, why become a fan or be a follower? Engage with your community and offer them a special incentive for liking your page.”
3. Offer valuable content.
“Offer your community valuable content and not just a coupon. A quick laugh, fun fact, delicious recipe, or cultural quip are all great options for some unique content. Something that isn’t always self-serving always connects.”
4. Become interactive.
“Be interactive with your audience. Posting high-quality content is great, but you must also engage your audience via surveys and polls on Facebook and scheduled TweetChats on Twitter. If you want to increase participation in these online events, include a raffle for a modestly priced gift card for participants.”
5. Create a unique brand experience.
“Everything you share on social media should be helpful, funny or inspiring. Stay front and center by creating your unique brand experience on social media, one they can’t get anywhere else. Copycat marketing is out the window; be you and start to thrive!”