Part 1 of Social Media 101 for the Business to Consumer environment sets the scene for the theory behind social media, looking at:
- The purpose of social media for business
- The challenges faced and what businesses are getting wrong
- Why users join or disengage from a businesses’ social media page
- What communities expect from a brand’s social media presence and who should manage this presence
In part 2, we look at best practice and some real-time examples. The rules for great content are quite different from one brand to another however, as a community manager for a consumer facing brand; I have found that the key to effectively managing a community and ensuring great results is:
Five ways to deliver great content:
1. Keep your content short and sharp
Research has shown that over 80% of users will scan through lengthy content instead of reading it. Your average user is impatient, trying to cram in as much as possible in a short space of time – concise messaging spanning 2-3 sentences works really well. Besides, Twitter only allows a maximum of 140 characters.
2. Share photos and videos as these create maximum impact
Human beings by their very nature are visual creatures. The use of multimedia instead of text, works better in telling your story. It is important to select your visuals carefully to ensure you achieve the necessary impact. A brilliant example of this can be found here.
3. Encourage your community to offer their insights and opinions
It is pointless having a platform that is a one-way stream! You want to know what your target audience thinks of your brand / product / service. Encourage conversation and the sharing of opinions, experiences and ideas. You do not need expensive research to understand how your brand and product offering is perceived. Listening to your community will provide you with valuable insights.
4. Localise and segment your messages to ensure relevance
It is important to understand the demographics of your fans/ followers and segment your messages accordingly. If 68% of your audience are women between the ages of 40-55, it will not make sense to offer advice on ‘caring for your new-born’ but it may make more sense offering advice on ‘how to juggle your career and family life’.
5. Engage on a daily basis and speak on topics that are current
Always speak on current topics and trends as users that are digitally switched will have breaking news at their fingertips. This also creates a good impression of your brand as staying ahead of the curve. In addition to this, users want regular engagement hence, it is important for brands to post and respond at least on a daily basis.