In today’s Internet era, nearly every business or brand has some kind of social media presence. Whether you’re just getting started on Facebook, or have an extensive following on Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and more, social media is a great way to connect with your customers and find out what they want. However, simply being on social media is not enough. In order to see real gains from your social media accounts, you have to engage your customers.
Encourage Commenting: This may seem like a no-brainer, but many small businesses and companies just getting started in social media do not realize the importance of it. By encouraging your customers, followers, users, etc to comment on posts and express their opinions, you are not only getting inspiration for future products, you are also building a relationship with your customers. This shows them that you value what they have to say, and helps them see the more human side of your company. It is also important to follow up customer inquiries with responses – if you encourage commenting but do not reply to them, customers will get bored and will stop commenting altogether. Also, be sure to thank commenters and let them know that you appreciate their comment even if they do not ask a question. They will remember this and will be sure to go back to your social media profile or website later on.
Share Content: Social media is not about constantly throwing sales pitches into your customers faces. In fact, this is the last thing that a customer wants to see while on a social media network. While it’s okay to post a few product pitches every so often, it is important to share content that is not urging them to purchase something. Simply sharing content that is related to your business or industry can help keep your followers interested in your page and makes your page a place that your followers will make a point of checking regularly. Maybe you found something awesome on one of your fans pages that you want to share with the rest of your following. You can share that content, and then tag or @mention the person who posted it originally.
Ask For Your Customers’ Opinions: While similar to encouraging commenting, asking for a customers opinion is taking it one step further. While simply saying, “leave us a comment!” might get a few people to bite, asking for an opinion gives your followers a call to action and a reason to get posting. It helps them feel as though they are a part of your business process (which they should be!) and gives them a reason to check back on your profile later.
Measurement and Analytics: Many social profiles offer analytics that allow you to measure your content’s reach and how well it is doing. This can help you understand what you are doing right, as well as what needs improvement. If you are continually sending out one kind of content and never get any feedback, but you aren’t checking measurement tools, you may not understand why your followers are not responding. This puts you at a disadvantage because you will continue to send out content that doesn’t work. However, if you are checking measurement tools, you’ll be able to figure out what you need to do in order to improve and engage your followers.
Social media has become an integral part of our society and chances are it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. With these simple tips, you’ll be able to utilize your social media accounts to their full potential, and help direct traffic to your website, increase sales, and gain more customers.