How to Engage with Your Customers on Social Media
Social media is an invaluable customer-service channel for businesses of all sizes, across all industries.
Research shows 1 in 4 users follow companiesthey may buy from on social media, and close to 40 percent are following their favorite companies. It’s a fantastic way to stay connected with your existing and potential customers, manage your reputation and ultimately grow your brand.
However, if they follow a number of different brands on Facebook, Twitter etc., their feed may easily become clogged with posts promoting different businesses.
That’s why you have to make yours stand out from the crowd and work hard to maximize engagement. How can you do that?
Avoid Shameless Self-promotion
While it’s tempting to keep sharing images of your latest products or tell the world you’ve sold your millionth item, too many self-congratulatory posts can alienate your followers.
Make sure you’re taking an interest in your audience, your industry and what people want from your brand. Ask them questions, both relevant to your services and more general. For example:
These are just a few ideas that demonstrate how broad your questions can be. While some may go unanswered, particularly for smaller businesses with a growing customer-base, you’re demonstrating that you value followers’ input and want to hear from them.
Respond Sooner Rather than Later
When people respond to your questions or posts, it’s vital that you respond. Even if a follower is criticizing your products / services or complaining about your brand quite aggressively, don’t just ignore them.
Why? Because others will see when you’ve failed to respond — and it suggests your business puts no value on customer feedback. Get involved with comments on your posts and show your audience you care.
If someone is putting your company down in a way that could scare potential customers away, ask them to send you a private message so you can take your discussion away from public visibility. This is a professional move that reduces the risk to your reputation and enables you to focus entirely on the individual, rather than juggling multiple users.
Maintain a Consistent Style
Maybe you’re quirky. Maybe you’re serious. Maybe you have a lighthearted tone.
Establishing a brand style for social media is key, and it should match that of your entire business. It would be incredibly inappropriate for, say, funeral directors to share humorous content on their Facebook page and trying to joke with followers asking about their services.
If your brand is based around a fun, dynamic personality, bring that to your social accounts. Let followers see the human side to your company, and always be honest.
Whatever tone you adopt, just make sure it’s consistent: don’t let it change from one post to another. Otherwise, you could confuse, frustrate and alienate your followers over time.
Don’t quite know how you want your business to ‘sound’ on social media? Look at your competitors or companies you wish to emulate. What kind of language do they incorporate into their posts? How do they engage with followers?
Stay Active and Regular
If users visit your Facebook page or browse your Twitter feed and see no recent activity, they may feel your business isn’t worth following. After all, what value does it offer them? Why should they waste their time browsing through old posts?
Upload posts, share content from your own website, get involved with industry developments and more. Take an interest in companies specializing in products that complement your own, interact with influencers and don’t be afraid to take part in trends that could help attract attention.
However, keep it positive — never court controversy. This could backfire and cause significant damage to your reputation.
One effective technique is to create a publishing schedule, so yourself and your team know exactly when new posts are necessary.
Be Generous with Visuals
Images are essential for your social media posts. Why?
Because research shows that Facebook posts including pictures achieved 87 percentof all engagements.
Posts with strong visuals attached will stand out more than text-only ones as followers scroll through their feeds, and if they’re eye-catching enough they can inspire the user to stop. If they like what they see, they could share it with their friends and put your brand in front of more people than you might have reached otherwise.
Make sure your images are relevant and original. Avoid stock pictures people will have seen at countless websites already — you will appear cheap and lazy. Try to create professional photographs or illustrations that jump out of the screen.
Avoid Spreading Yourself Too Thin
Big brands can juggle multiple social networks: they have the budget and the resources to maintain a strong presence.
But if you’re a smaller business, you’ll have limited capacity and may be restricted to just one or two networks instead. You have to be able to stay active on each and build a real relationship with followers.
This is much trickier to do if you’re spread too thin. Being present and able to interact with minimal delay can help you maintain a solid reputation. Consider hiring a professional team to monitor your reputation and help you keep your audience happy.
Engaging your customers on social media is crucial to build and sustain interest in your company. At Reputation Mart, our team has you covered: we’ll send you real-time alerts by email whenever someone online refers to your business.
This is a terrific way to prevent your brand’s image being represented poorly and stay on top of customer reviews / feedback. (both positive and negative)
Want to know more about how we can help? Please don’t hesitate to get in touch!
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