I use Hootsuite for managing Twitter accounts and to follow particular keywords and hashtags I am interested in, such as local businesses. Recently, one of them tweeted something that has prompted me to think about one of the basics we talk about with our clients – making sure the content you post is something your audience wants to read. Note, I don’t want to shame the business because they are trying, so for my post I’m going to make up a fictitious company and I am making up the contents of the tweet. The tweet read:
We’ve uploaded our widget production schedule to our website. Check it out and like this post!
Let’s break this up a bit and address the issues I see here:
1.) How do I get to their website? There was no link in this tweet, no contextualizing instruction to tell you where on their website. Further, their Twitter bio didn’t even contain a link to their website – it linked to their Facebook page. So, to find the schedule on their website I either have to click through to their Facebook page and dig around there, or I have to open a browser, head to my favourite search engine, and then search for them, hoping their website is optimized for search and is one of the first few items I am going to be presented with in the search return. Am I going to do that? Probably not.
2.) I can’t like a tweet. They asked their Twitter followers to perform a Facebook action, because they used Facebook’s auto-publishing tool to post this on Twitter. This doesn’t feel genuine to me when I can tell they didn’t take the time to write the tweet in a Twitter specific client. In most Twitter clients (and on Twitter itself) you can tell how that person published that tweet. In Hootsuite, this image to the right is what you can see:
3.) Digging a bit deeper, why should I care about the widget production schedule? Is this something to be really excited about? Were they halted in production? Was their production facility shut down and they are celebrating being back up and running? Can I buy a sought after widget now? Are their widgets free? As a follower, it would be nice for the business to provided me with a clue about why I should care about a production schedule. Not knowing why this is important makes me feel out of the loop.
If you don’t have a budget to hire an expert to engage with your target audience – don’t despair. Social media is about quality, not quantity. So, here’s my advice:
Be great where you are, in a place that suits you, and don’t worry about where everyone else is.
Being spread thin across five or ten social media channels isn’t optimum for genuine engagement. In fact, it can send the exact opposite message. But how do you decide what channels to focus on? Here’s the short answer, and in subsequent posts, I’ll explore these tips a bit more.
- Figure out your goals. Why do you want to be on social media? To get more customers? To demystify your process? What’s the purpose?
- Figure out what channels will best reach those goals. If your product is really visual, and lends itself really well to photos, Instagram might be a good fit. If you want to be able to share instant news and updates about your schedule, Twitter might be better. Maybe you need a combination of two or even three places.
- Be honest about how much time you can commit to being online with your customers – and stick to it! Set a schedule. Social media isn’t an afterthought, and if you treat it as such, your fans and followers will see that. Setting rules for yourself will also help with your own time management.
- Find out what they want to see from you. Ask your fans and followers for input and plan your content.
- Assess, re-assess, and adjust.
- Be yourself. Remember that social media is ‘social’ before it is ‘media’.
Stay tuned to upcoming posts and I’ll dig into this issue a bit more. In the meantime, don’t be afraid to contact us to discuss your needs. We offer strategy, training, coaching, and content development and management to suit your needs. Thanks for reading!