Can you imagine your life, utterly devoid of social media?
If you are a millennial or Gen Z, the chances are that you can’t. After all, with the rise of platforms like Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook, the masses have found a new way to connect.
Social media isn’t just famous for personal use. Instead, owing to its broad reach, many businesses are creating strategies solely for their social media presence. After all, it is a great and cost-effective way to speak to your target audience.
What do the numbers say?
Let’s put it all to perspective using a few numbers. According to HootSuite, there are approximately 8 billion people in the world. And out of them, 4.5 billion people are online, while 3.7 billion are active on social media.
As per the Digital Information World, an average user spends 142 minutes daily on social media platforms! And every user has at least seven accounts. This proves one thing for sure- a significant chunk of consumers are online.
Regardless of which business you are in, you will find your target audience online. You can’t let go of the opportunity to speak to them via social media.
However, you must do so appropriately. It is essential to follow social media etiquettes when reaching consumers through the platform.
The Do’s of Social Media
Here are some things you must do on social media.
1. Be grammatically correct
Users might not run their statuses and posts past grammatical checks whenever they post online. However, this doesn’t mean that you can also be as care-free as them. Remember, you are a brand, and your social media account is just one of the many ways to get your brand message across.
Make sure you come off as sophisticated and authentic. The first step to ensuring this is using proper punctuation, spelling, and grammar. Even when you are replying to comments, don’t overuse caps lock or disregard the rules of grammar.
You need to look professional online. So, read every marketing communication you send across carefully. This includes both posts and comments.
2. Use the Story Feature
Now, a wide variety of social media platforms have the Story feature in them. This includes Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat.
Many brands tend to stay away from the function, dubbing it to be a tad too unprofessional.
This is a misconception. Stories tend to be highly engaging. There is much more chance of people viewing your five-second story than reading a post to the tee. So, make sure to use this feature to your advantage.
What can you post in your story? You can share news about discounts or recent collections. You can also use the feature creatively. For instance, a leather jacket online store can post stories about how the different jackets are made or how to carry the leather jackets stylishly.
Put your creative brain to work and come up with the perfect content to share via Stories.
3. Be Consistent
One of the first things taught in brand management classes is the need to have a consistent brand image. Your communications are the stepping stone to creating this consistency.
Generally, people tend to think that consistency only comes through the tone of voice and the content. However, in the world of social media, it also comes in the form of the frequency of posting.
The more inconsistent and infrequent you are with your social media posts, the more you will lose out on your target audience.
According to a study conducted by Facebook, brands tend to lose connection with their target audience if they post merely once a week or more than three times a day. Remember, you can’t spam your customers, nor can you let them forget you.
You need to find a balance between the two. Post original and witty content three days a week and at most twice a day.
The Don’ts of Social Media
Here are three things you must avoid doing on social media at all costs!
1. Be a spammer
There is nothing worse than annoying your target audience. And there is nothing easier to do than annoying them!
In an attempt to sound friendly, don’t spam your audience. It is never a good idea to continually post, retweet, comment, and like. If you do so, you will watch as your engagement rates drop significantly. People will start unfollowing you. After all, no one wants a brand to be the only thing they see on their social media accounts!
2. Complain about negative customer experiences
Just like there are bad brands that garner a lot of negative reviews online, there can also be bad customers. However, in this case, a brand cannot go online and share their negative experience with the said customer.
One of the essential social media etiquettes for business owners is the need to take the high road when things don’t go to plan. Whenever a customer interaction turns sour or a transaction does not follow through, never bad mouth your customers online.
Don’t even post sarcastic comments about them. This is because potential customers might look at your interactions with your audience and form a negative opinion about you.
You don’t want to sound like a bully or a whiner online!
Hashtags are a great solution. They allow users to view content about a given topic all at once. As a business owner, it lets you categorize your content and link it to a more important topic.
But, there is a thing such as overdoing hashtags. Some brands are even guilty of it! Some people tend to convert every word of their post into a hashtag. Others make the entire sentence into one prominent, incoherent, hashtag!
Both of these approaches tend to look very unprofessional and highly annoying. It also means that the tags don’t perform a function, unlike the initial purpose of the concept!
Social media is a powerful tool if you use it the right way. Where can you address such a massive chunk of your target group, all at once?
Be careful about social media etiquette and watch as your online presence, and hence your business revenue increases.
Social Media ROI: What You Should and Shouldn’t Do [Infographic]
Social media can help brands reach out to their target audience easily. However, developing a strong presence on social media does require a significant amount of investment.
It requires you to put in a lot of time and money.
It’s natural to expect a fair return on your investment. To help you boost your social media ROI, we’ve put together a list of do’s and don’ts.
Let’s first discuss what you need to do to maximize your social media ROI.
Establish Clear Goals
Only if you know what you want to achieve, you can work on building a successful strategy.
To sharpen your focus, it’s a good idea to narrow down your goals. Not only will this help you streamline your processes, but also maximize your ROI.
Collaborate with Influencers
By partnering with influencers that fit with your brand, you can take your social media game to the next level. These influencers have a strong relationship with their followers.
They can help you increase your brand awareness, sales, and reach out to a broad audience. Moreover, provided you hit the right chords, influencer marketing is exceptionally cost-effective.
Now that you know what you should do, let’s discuss things that you should avoid doing.
Prioritize Quantity Over Quality
The key to developing a successful social media marketing strategy is to deliver high-quality and engaging content.
There is a lot of content on social media already. It’s likely that your audience is already burned out from content fatigue.
So, always put quality before quantity.
Forget to Track Your Success
Amidst devoting yourself to creating kickass content, do not forget the most crucial step—evaluation. While this may seem scary, it will help you eliminate ineffective strategies and leverage those that really work.
When done right, social media marketing can be a boon!
You can leverage multiple social media marketing tools to boost your ROI. Plus, some of them are free!
For a list of the best ones out there, read this on my blog shanebarker.com.
5 Steps to Conquering Your Fear of Making YouTube Videos
It’s a scary thought, right? Putting yourself out there for the entire world to watch and judge can be downright frightening. In fact, fear is the number one reason people state for not doing YouTube videos.
Trust me, I can relate.
I was the shy kid in school that hated getting up in front of people. Even though I was pretty comfortable clowning around on camera with family and friends, I never thought I’d be putting myself on YouTube for a bunch of strangers to see.
It took me a year before I got up enough nerve to record my first video. But I quickly learned that the more videos I created, the easier it became.
So here are some tips to ease your fear of making YouTube videos…
Avoid Using a Script
You might think placing a script in front of you is going to ease your fears, but here’s the deal…
If you read from a piece of paper word for word, it might come across very robotic and unnatural. If you need notes, just create an outline with the high-level points and place it right below or alongside the camera.
You can glance at the topics and use those as talking points throughout the video.
Trust yourself. If you know your material, you won’t have any problem expanding on your main points.
Your Editor is Your Best Friend
I remember when I first started doing videos, I didn’t know much about editing. So I would keep recording takes until the videos were almost perfect.
For some videos, that would mean starting over 7 or 8 times. I was creating so much extra work for myself.
You don’t have to be perfect with your takes. Learn to use your editor so you can cut out the ummms, errrrs and awkward pauses.
No matter what software you use, there’s a YouTube tutorial out there with instructions for how to edit video.
Do a Test Run
Some people suggest rehearsing in the mirror. While that is certainly one way to practice, it’s better to rehearse in the actual setting you are going to use for your final take.
Record yourself a few times and watch it back. Jot down two or three things you want to improve upon and do another test run.
Keep doing them until you are more comfortable. I guarantee you’ll get better with every take.
You Don’t Have to Be Perfect
An editor is great for removing bigger mistakes that interrupt flow or reveal incorrect facts, but you don’t have to get rid of every flaw.
Small imperfections here and there make the video seem more natural. Remember, no one expects your video to be perfectly polished.
You can even have fun with your mistakes from time to time. Don’t take yourself too seriously. People will appreciate that, and it makes the presentation more enjoyable.
People often say to me, “I feel like you are sitting in my living room talking to me.”
Not only does being conversational make your audience feel at ease, but it will also help you relax as the presenter. Just pretend you are talking to a friend or family member.
Trying to be extra polished can actually make you more nervous and seem uptight. Relax and remember tip #4.
We Are Our Worst Critics
I remember helping a friend with her videos, and she pointed out all these things she hated about her presentation.
What’s funny is I didn’t notice a single one of them until she brought them to my attention. Then, of course, I couldn’t help but notice after that.
We all have things we’d like to change about ourselves, so the playing field is pretty even there. Also, most people won’t even notice or care about the things that bother you. At the end of the day, if you are giving them what they want, they’ll be happy.
Sure, you may encounter some nasty trolls who try to make your life miserable, but they have delete and block buttons for that. Plus, the YouTube commenting system is very anti-troll friendly.
Just remember, once you conquer that fear, the benefits of creating video outweigh the negatives by far. So go for it!