Social media is a necessity for any modern company, but navigating the web in a professional capacity requires understanding some particularly stringent rules of etiquette. The following tips will assist you in harnessing this powerful tool and achieving your goals online.
Complete all profile categories
Incomplete information can make your page seem less professional, so always include relevant company details in full. Uploading a logo, profile picture or avatar is absolutely essential, as without one, consumers are unlikely to view your page.
Keep business and private accounts separate
Make sure your page is instantly recognisable as a business account, and avoid letting personal content or information spill onto your profile. If you also have a personal account, consider using an alias or nickname to avoid any confusion between your public and private online activities.
Focus your time
Often, time constraints make maintaining a worthwhile social media presence across a range of platforms simply unrealistic. Three should be the maximum – commonly Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, although Instagram and Pinterest can be more effective for visual marketing strategies.
Remember that the internet is a public record
Every statement posted on social media is a potentially non-retractable representation of your company, so particular care must be taken with phrasing – especially when responding to complaints.
Respond to every comment
The potential of social media largely relies on its ability to help you forge long-lasting business relationships and build customer loyalty. Responding swiftly to every message and comment – positive or negative – is a crucial part of that.
Use hashtags with care
Using hashtags in front of keywords can open up a wealth of opportunities for optimising your content online, but they should be approached with caution, as over-zealous or poorly-planned hashtagging undermines your brand authority.
Start the discussion
Asking people re-post or ‘like’ your content can imply desperation, so consider asking for feedback instead. Discussions on social media don’t just attract attention, they also serve to humanise your brand.
Avoid saturating your followers’ feeds by paying close attention to the different conventions for each network. On Facebook, for example, more than three posts per day can start to feel excessive; on Twitter, six tweets should be the upper limit.
Reflect and re-think
Every few months, review each social media account in turn to examine which strategies have worked well and which have been less successful. This will help you to streamline your web presence and continually improve performance.
Retain a sense of fun
Social media is not a strictly formal environment, and generating a positive company image should be one of your primary goals. Fun, lighthearted content, if it suits your brand, should form a significant part of your social media output.
Spelling and grammar are crucial elements in communicating the professionalism of your brand. Accurate written prose suggests diligence and trustworthiness, so proofread all social media posts before publishing.
The goal of social media is to build up genuine connections, which can be a lengthy process. Focus more on high-quality, targeted output, rather than numbers alone. One genuinely engaged follower is worth more than 100 spam accounts.
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