As was mentioned last week, finding your voice when it comes to social media is an important first step. Just blundering into the world of Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn is not the best way to go, as has been discussed here many times. So, let’s assume that you have done your homework. You spent time researching each option, from blogging to Facebook, and have decided on a course of action. After more agonizing days, you have now written your first blog post or created that Facebook profile. Like many, you may now be standing there, scratching your head and asking, what now?
One of the first things that we always tell people about starting a blog or getting into social media, is that starting one, or creating a profile, and then not doing anything with it is worse than not starting one at all. Having a profile that sits there empty, or a blog that sits there with just one post and never a new one, is just as bad, if not worse, than if you had never decided to start with social media or a blog at all.
It seems like a simple statement to make, but it is often one of the hardest things to do with social media. Good content brings people to your blog, your website and your profile. It can take a long time, up to a year or more, but consistently putting good content out there is what will bring people back, again and again.
That’s why it is so important to do your research. One of the things you need to decide for yourself is, can I create consistently good content? Am I a good enough writer to keep putting out interesting and insightful blog posts? Do I have photos and videos that will make excellent content for my Facebook profile? Am I able to construct quality discussions and arguments when I participate in LinkedIn group discussions? If you are unsure, or think that the answer is no, then you need to decide if there is someone else within your organization who can do those things. Choosing who is updating your Facebook profile or writing your blog is as vital as deciding what to write about.
If you company has group events, then post photos and videos from them. Remember, a social media profile is supposed to show the human side of your company. It is not meant to be solid text. No one wants to read that much online. You can have fun with your social media profile, and your blog, and give your company a unique voice, without sacrificing the seriousness of your business.
Photos are important if you are using Facebook. The medium there is perfect for photos and photos capture people’s attention and get them to read your notes and updates. Try to include photos within your blog, as well, or use YouTube and embed videos.
Have a decent-looking logo for your company on your company page. Use images whenever you can. Make sure you are careful about using photos and making sure you are authorized to put them on your blog and into your posts as copyright infringement is a serious issue and can get you into trouble.
Remember to stay on topic. What is your company image? What are you trying to present to the world? Are you taking a position on a particular topic? What is that position and why? Are there supporting articles for your position that you can link to? If you are conducting a business page, remember that you are promoting your business and don’t stray, too much or too often, into the personal arena. Find a way to strike a balance between the fun and the serious.
Using social media can be a delicate balancing act. That’s why there are companies who specialize in crafting a message and a company identity and then helping those companies keep that message going. If you find yourself confused, lost or unable to keep the boat on track, then seek some help or advice.