Towards the end of 2015, we took it upon ourselves to re-evaluate our digital presence. Along with redesigning and launching our new website, we dusted off our social media profiles. So with this fresh new look and 2016 fast approaching, we set about making a plan. This is a little insight into what we did. And it is something that you can use and perhaps take pointers on, to get your brand out there in the social stratosphere.
It’s always best to undertake research before embarking on a social media plan for your business or blog etc. Determine what social media channels are most popular among your peers and competitors. This key stage allows you to discover which social media channels are ideal for your brand but also will give you a further insight into how people interact with brands similar to yours.
Perhaps you will discover that you will need three of the major social media platforms or perhaps you’re comfortable with concentrating on one just for now. Ensure you can dedicate some time and resource to your social media presence. We can hear you say, “it’s not the only marketing technique we can use” which is true, but ignoring it will not benefit your brand in any way and this is now even more relevant as we know that Google’s algorithm updates are more than ever penalising websites for low quality content on sites along with a lack of social signals.
- Brand consistency
Next step is to ensure you have your company logo and style ready to roll out across various profile and cover images. It’s important to ensure all channels that represent you and your brand, are consistent. This reinforces brand recognition. Prepare a long and short company description – these can be used in the bio sections of each social channel, where appropriate.
- Grow your followers
This next step can be daunting to anyone starting out. Looking at your social profile with 0 followers and not knowing where to start. Once your profiles are ready and you are happy with your online social representation, it’s time to grow your audience! Begin by following and liking people and companies of similar interests to you. You’ll begin to see an increase in followers across all channels. Don’t be afraid to engage in some social media online networking, these happen in almost every county across the UK and further afield, so it’s time to get searching! Keep your communication professional with others – remember you are representing your brand. If you wouldn’t put it on your website for everyone to see, don’t put it on your social media channels!
So, all your profiles are ready to go and your followers are growing steadily, but how will people find you on Facebook or Twitter? Time to get your social icons on the home page of your website. Your web developer can help you with this if you are unsure or have limited access.
Link up all your social media channels. For example, on your Google+ About page, there are spaces to fill in various other links. Link up where you can, it increases the chances of profile visits!
This is the biggest step! There’s no point in having all these profiles set up and nothing to share on them. Along with this, there is the Panda algorithm to deal with. This Google algorithm targets websites that have low quality content. So if you’re not up to scratch, your website will fall down in page rankings.
Planning is key. Make a list of topics that are relevant to your market whether it’s news, company updates, product releases, an upcoming sale or a Top 10 list. Get colleagues involved; perhaps there is a keen writer among them. Vary the topics and try to gauge the best time to post these updates by testing. This can be helped by paying attention to your analytics for each channel. It’s all about testing in the early days.
Try not to let your Twitter or Facebook page go weeks without an update, you will not get noticed this way. If your content is good, people will share it. This can lead to others linking to your content and this is one thing that Google likes to see; traffic being driven by social signals.
- Find a balance
There is no definitive answer when it comes to how often to post of Facebook, how many times to tweet or how many company updates to share on LinkedIn. You will find various recommendations online but it’s important to note that over posting is likely to force people to disconnect from your brand but the opposite will not get you seen. With the research you completed in step one, this should aid in giving a clearer plan on how often you need to interact with your audience.
Once you get started on your social media campaigns, you will discover many more features and hints and tips along with way. This isn’t a full guide on how to, but it’s what we recommend on how to start!
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