Six Tips to Use Social Media
By David W.B. Parker, MBA IT-PM
PTC Computer Solutions is always working to bring insightful and thoughtful technical and marketing information to the business world. In so doing, we often come across some excellent sources of good information. Here are several tips from SolarWinds that we feel are worth repeating:
Build a Strategy
Having a plan is the key to a good Social Media Campaign. Strategy is one of the primary tools a leader uses to guide decision-making and resource allocation for a business. Your business executes off of a strategy, and so should your social media efforts. To create an effective Social Media Strategy, it’s important to answer 6 important questions:
- Why are you using social media? [your goals and objectives]
- Who are you aiming to reach? [your target market and outreach]
- Where are you placing your message [which social media platforms]
- What are you saying on social media? [your content mix]
- When are you saying it? [your posting schedule]
- How are you placing your content? [the software and tools to be efficient]
TIP#1: When you are creating the social media strategy for your business, allow time in your day to keep the content up to date. Nothing turns people off faster than old, out of date content that does not answer their questions.
Review and improve the strategy
Keep it current, up to date, and relevant. A social media strategy is a living, breathing entity that should be closely monitored and improved over time. Choose a few important KPI’s and keep an eye on how your efforts are performing against your goals. In today’s world, real-time analysis and adjustments need to be made in order to stay on top of the game. For example, if you find that a particular post type is receiving higher engagement than the rest, increase the use of this post type.
*HINT: photos and videos are generally the post types that receive the highest engagement.
There are lots of tools that can help you pull social media stats without running the numbers manually. Most social sites have their own analytics platforms. Check out Facebook Insights™ and Twitter Analytics™. Here are a few external tools: Sprout Social®, KISSmetrics™, Moz®, Simply Measured™, and Social Mention™.
TIP#2: Harness your expertise. When you are building and refining your social media strategy, share the knowledge and expertise you and your staff have gained in your business. Provide insight and tips that visitors to your social media pages can use without having to purchase a product or call your company.
Don’t Forget the Hashtags
Classify and Categorize your content with the Hashtag (#). Hashtags are an important way to classify and categorize the content you post on social media. They make it easier for people to search for your posts by the themed hashtag. For example, typing #RMM into the Twitter® search bar will bring you posts and pages that have used the #RMM hashtag. Hashtags are especially useful at industry events and conferences. Using them while posting about the event will allow you to earn yet another point of contact in order to get more out of the event.
TIP#3: Don’t use too many hashtags in one post. Nothing makes a post harder to read and understand than a series of hashtags that distract people from what you’re actually trying to say. Use language in your hashtags that is straight forward and means something, and where possible, takes the reader back to your website or to a cool video. #keepitsimple
Demonstrate what you do
Don’t forget to use image to express yourself. The use of video and images in social media is integral to understanding how people view and use social media. By adding videos of who you are or pictures of your team in action provides a level of access to your company that simple words cannot convey. And it further helps solidify your role as a leader in your community.
TIP#4: Videos do not have to be long and in fact, a short video that gets your point across in a straight forward manner is best. If you want to use humor in a video, keep it clean and keep it relevant.
Interact with visitors
Social Media is a two way street for communications. Social media is not a one way communication. Responding to comments – good and bad – in a timely manner will go a long way to building your brand and a community of loyal followers who will be more likely to purchase from you and share their experiences with others. Cultivating relationships with your visitors can lead to more sales.
TIP#5: Let your customers contribute. If your customers leave comments on your site about how your business has helped them, share that throughout all of your social media accounts. And don’t forget to add a shout out to that customer too.
Make Social Pages easy to find
And, keep them front and center. Many companies miss this step. If you have taken the time to set up social media pages, why would you want to do anything other than make them easy to find? If you don’t promote your social media pages, they won’t be found on their own.
Be sure to clearly display your social media icons on your website and hyperlink them to your social pages. Many companies choose to prioritize their social media pages by placing icons at the top of their website. Also include clickable icons in all your marketing materials including emails, flyers, business cards and more.
TIP#6: Put your website’s content to work for you. Encourage readers to share the content that they like and enjoy.
Timing is everything
Manager the timing of your social media posts. WHAT you post on social media is just as important as WHEN you post. The goal with your content on social is to get it seen by as many eyeballs as possible, right? So, get smart about your timing.
Schedule your post for times when you know your audience is online. Using Facebook® Insights, you can visit the Posts tab and see exactly when your specific audience is using Facebook. This should be the basis of your posting schedule. There are also general days and times to post that are better than others. To get you started, we created a brief guide on the next page. You can also reference tools like Timing+™, Followerwonk® and Fanpage Karma™ to help create a posting schedule that’s best for you.
The best time to post on Social Media
Scheduling is Critical, so don’t just put stuff out there. You’re wasting your time and everyone else’s as well. Make sure to follow some simple rules:
- When to post on Facebook…
- Best days to post are Thursdays and Fridays
- Posts around 1pm get the most shares
- Posts around 3pm get the most clicks
- Post at the top of the hour (0:0 – 0:15)
- When to post on Twitter…
- Best days to Tweet® for B2B are weekdays
- Always Tweet on Thursdays
- Tweets at 5pm get the most Retweets
- Tweets at 12pm and 6pm get the most clicks
- When to post on LinkedIn®…
- Best days to post are Tuesday – Thursday
- Posts on Tuesdays at 10am-11am get the most clicks AND shares
- Other good post times are 7am-8am and 5pm-6pm
- Overall, stick to weekdays during business hours
- When to post on Google+™…
- Best days to post are weekdays
- Posts on Wednesdays at 9am get the best engagement
- Late morning is popular across the board
PTC Computer Solutions is the Answer
If all of this befuddles you, belittles your being, begs your brain to be foddered, belying your intellect…not to worry, PTC Computer Solutions is an expert on this stuff and is here to help. It’s what we do. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or go to our website at www.ptccomputersolutions.com for more information. We are always at the ready. Online marketing is an incredibly dynamic environment with a tremendous number of moving parts. It is a constantly changing world. You do what you do best. Let us do what we do best. Keeping involved and staying ahead of the latest improvements is what we do at PTC Computer Solutions. If you are looking to get noticed on the Internet but don’t know where to begin, let PTC Computer Solutions help you get started or help improve your current website and website marketing plan and budget. Among everything else we do, PTC can plan a full marketing strategy and budget for your company and complete any marketing efforts, web or otherwise, you wish to achieve in order to deliver a consistent and effective message to your prospects.
By David W. B. Parker
PTC Computer Solutions
WEB SITE DESIGN & DEVELOPMENT ~ SEO ~ ONLINE MARKETING ~ SOCIAL MEDIA ~ IT PROJECT MANAGEMENT ~ MARKETING PLANS ~ ETC.
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