Perhaps you have been resisting social media because it overwhelms you. Maybe you figured that was okay because you thought social media was just a passing fancy, more of a toy that young people are playing with than a real business tool. Wake up and smell the apps! Even the Nightly News is posting across social feeds, and all of their stories have hashtags. Social media is no longer a trend, it’s a requirement. Next you will tell me your staff is already overloaded with responsibilities. No one has the time to social? I get it. Although, there is something that most of us have less of than time…MONEY! Marketing has always been a deep pocket sport. However, the invention of Social Media has dramatically leveled the playing field. No longer are smaller brands and not-for-profits struggling to be heard over the din of bulging marketing budgets of “big name brands”. When it comes to social media, big names are no different than individual entrepreneurs. Social is all about sweat equity, the effort you put in and the authenticity you bring. It really is the great equalizer, but you have to be in it to win it.
Here are 5 social media hacks to help the overwhelmed prepare to social:
The basics of marketing have not changed even as the arena expands into the digital space. Consistency remains key to cultivating notoriety and inspiring loyalty. As such, ideally you want to have a single ID that you use across all social channels. That way your fans, new and old, will always know how to find you. You want to acquire these ids on ALL platforms, even the ones you aren’t presently using. And as new apps come to market your first order of business should be to secure your ID. You can decide later whether or not to utilize the channel in your marketing plan.
All you have to do is open any social media app and it is immediately clear how valuable photographs are. Which could very well mean you are sitting on a gold mine, all you have to do is dig it up. Gather your history of pictures and catalog them for future use. Essentially you are creating your own personal library of potential social content. The more detailed your cataloging the easier it will be to put your pictures to use. Take it a step further and prep your photographs by cropping them, as well as laying an overlay with your brand logo, hashtag or social ID, and you will be ready to put a picture into action at a moments notice.
Culture Of Sharing
Remember Spirit Week that led up to High School Homecoming? Everyone in the school knew in advance what the theme was going to be for each day of the week, thus making it easier for students and teachers to participate and show their loyalty to the school. The spirit week format created a culture of social participation. You want to do the same thing with your social media channels, creating a culture of sharing. For example, Monday’s could be your “merry” day where you ask your audience to share good news. Wednesday could be your CAPTION This Pic” invite day. The limit isn’t the sky, the limit is your brand narrative. Whatever you choose you want it to stay true to your story, your brand mission. Ultimately the goal is to turn your community from passive audience members to content generating minions who talk about your business or brand far more than you talk about it yourself. To achieve that you need to provide a clear pathway for your community to deliver for you.
Back in the dark ages of social media all posts were LIVE and in real time. Today, the medium isn’t so primitive. Now you can schedule posts to broadcast when you want them to, when you need them to, even if you are unavailable. It’s the closest we can get to being in two places at the same time… or three, or four. Twitter can be posted to from Tweetdeck or Hootsuite. Instagram can be accessed through a scheduling app called Schedugram. Facebook has scheduling capabilities built right into the channel. There’s even more out there, all you have to do is look.
Hashtags, Yours and Theirs
Hashtags are your invite to connect on social. You definitely want to have a hashtag of your own as a brand to help collate conversations. However, when you are just starting out, it’s the hashtags of others that are your gateway to engagement. A great way to join in existing revelry is through National Days. You know those crazy days like #NationalCoffeeDay or #NationalDotDay. You can get your brand in front of new consumers by jumping into the hashtag content pool with your own posts, as well as comments, shares and likes on the posts of others. The same holds true for more serious campaigns such as #62milliongirls and #StandUpToCancer. Such social calls to action offer your brand an opportunity to show a softer, yet deeply committed side to the community at large. All of these conversations have the ability to put you in contact with people who might otherwise not have seen your feed, and turn them into loyalists.
There are so many more social hacks to offer, but I am not here to overwhelm you with possibilities, I’m here to inspire you with probabilities. These hacks are social actions you can take to the bank. Bottom line, social media can be your friend, as long as you let it.
For more social direction check out these other Miss Lori posts: Miss Lori Offers Smart Talk About The Currency of Social Influence, 5 Tips For Better Tweeting, 9 Kids Photos Not To Post Online, 10 Facebook House Rules From Miss Lori, and 13 Tips For Taking Selfies That Will Get You Noticed.
This post is just meant to wet your social whistle. You can enjoy the full breadth of Miss Lori’s social acumen by hiring her to consult for your company. Contact email@example.com.