4 Do’s and Don’t for Businesses Using Social Media

4 Do’s and 4 Don’ts for Businesses Using Social Media

Image Credit: Jason Howie/Flickr

As a business owner, you know the importance of social media as a way to make a connection between your business and customers. Whenever potential clients are looking for a new product or service, they generally start their search on social media, not only to learn more about your brand, but also to see what others are saying about a brand or business.

While more companies are creating social media strategies in their marketing, not every strategy is effective.

If you want to guarantee a more effective strategy, Caitlin Burns, a New York-based business strategist for media companies, has outlined a few social media tactics for brands to definitely use and ones to avoid.

1. Know who you are.
Understand your identity, your brand’s identity and the voice of who is speaking on any social media platform. You’re the one who knows your product, production, company or brand best. Being able to communicate that is the first thing I recommend for clients so that on whatever platform they use, people have a sense of who is doing the speaking. The rest of the tactics come down to language, and specific things that you might do to turn a phrase on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

2. Don’t wait until after the fact.
You don’t want to find yourself without a sense of what’s coming next, or responding to controversy in a way that doesn’t seem like it’s coming from the same person who created a status update or tweet. You can get in a lot of trouble if you say one very appealing thing, but you can’t replicate it. Another problem is if what you say goes against what you do in the company.

3. Understand your audience.
It’s important to know who you’re targeting. What do they do? When do they live online? With a savvy social media expert, you’ll be able to figure these things out. Understanding your goals will allow you to see how your successes and failures are working — social media allows you to see that faster than any other platform.

4. Don’t make assumptions about your audience.
It is a mistake to think your audience is going to act a certain way just because you think they will. Treat your audience as a subject, not as an object. Your work on social media is a dialogue, a conversation between you and that individual.

Look at how your audience is changing. Learn about them by communicating with your social media team on a regular basis. They are the front-line people who can help you understand what’s working and what isn’t — what people are really engaging with and what they couldn’t care less about. This is an opportunity to quickly understand how your brand is being received.

5. Plan ahead.
Unless you yourself are a savvy social media strategist, it’s probably worth the energy and expense to bring in someone who is an expert. You need someone who is immersed in these platforms to help you measure your goals. Whether your team is very experienced or inexperienced in application, a good strategy is going to put you in a great place to execute….