Tips on How to Make Your Social Media Content Stand Out
The beauty of social media is that it gives everyone a voice. On the other hand, so many people take advantage of social media that many entries are never seen, simply because they do not stand out.
Content and Strategy
The key to effective social media is to pay attention to what you say as well as how you say it. The content should reflect the culture of your business. A lot of social media is entertainment, parody, and self-indulgence. Social media for business must be dignified and positive. Think Morgan Freeman instead of Tom Green. You want to present yourself as a social entity that people like, that they respect, and that they associate with your business.
Take It From Covey
Before writing “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”, Stephen R. Covey gave advice about how people can become part of a group. He compared the group to a herd of cows. When a new cow wants to join the others, she should enter unobtrusively, at the fringes. In other words, the new group member should be humble, not challenging. The idea is to get other group members to avoid the question, “why should we let this newcomer in?” in favor of, “how can I learn more about this interesting newcomer?”
Pick the Right Herd
With your limited resources, consider your participation strategy as a matter of quality, not quantity. Depending on the time you have to post, choose a short list of forums or other communities where you have the ability to participate regularly, perhaps once a week. Make sure these forums include the opinion leaders in your industry or your customer base. Then make sure that each thing that you say is positive, complementary, and to the point.
Rein in the Natural Salesman
When you get the urge to see a forum as a captive audience, consider toning down your approach. Before you become someone’s supplier, you want to be their problem solver. This is why many of your fellow members participate in the forums in the first place. Be the person that fulfills their expectations, and if appropriate, make your business part of the solution.
Be a Digital Immigrant
One challenge for many marketers is they are not naturally familiar with social media technology. They may not use Twitter, they may not visit YouTube, and they may not participate in online forums. Papers researching the adoption of modern technology refer to those comfortable with social media as “digital natives.” If you are not a digital native, consider becoming an “immigrant.” Avoid jumping into a forum and posting as if you were writing an email or a memo. Instead, start out as a listener. Watch for those participants who say things that are useful, and do it in an engaging manner. Then watch for your opportunity. Avoid posting to meet a deadline. Match your posting rhythm to the flow of the community.
Brand Your Voice
When the country group Little Big Town collaborated with Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac, they said their biggest goal was to create a sound like Fleetwood Mac, one that was unique, compelling, and sounded like no other group. Create your own voice the same way. Make an online personality that is unique and useful. This will make you a powerful online entity and an effective representative for your business.