You know that friend on Facebook who’s always sharing a meme about parenting? And that other friend who is always showing you what they ate for lunch? What about the guy who’s actually pretty funny, whose posts give you a genuine chuckle?
Then there are the businesses you follow on social media. Take Lululemon for example. They’ve always got some super cool slowed down video of someone in an incredible yoga pose wearing really well-designed gear. It makes you want to click to buy immediately.
The point is, you know what to expect from each social media profile, right? Well, your business’s social media profiles should be no different in that they offer your followers some expectation. Not predictability, but your followers should know who you are, what your brand is and what kind of value to expect from you with every post. And the more you can get them to trust you and interact with you through effective social media marketing, the more your profile will show up in people’s feeds, growing your audience, brand and marketing success.
Our Facebook followers know that we really love our dogs. And donuts [but who doesn’t, amiright?]. But they also know that we have our finger on the pulse of current, effective marketing techniques; know how to build an effective and great-looking website; are a great source of killer icon downloads; and that we really are cool.
And we have found that when we share our professional knowledge or good information paired with things that are genuine to who we are, our followers respond.
So what should you share? Well first, know your audience — and we don’t just mean their demographics, which will change depending on the media you’re using. Monitor your social media feedback — and that of your competitors — to learn what your customers are seeking, thinking, saying and responding to. You will be able to create better content to better serve and grow your audience once you know to whom, specifically, you are speaking.
Once you know your audience, engage it, because that will build trust and your relationship with them. How you ask? Well, there are so many methods to captivate your crowd [here are 35 to be exact], but here are our four favorite.
1. Crowdsource an answer.
For the past few years, Doritos has been running its “Crash the Super Bowl” contest, which crowdsources a video for the company to run as an advertisement during each NFL season-ending game. Beyond the more than 32,000 submissions to date, Doritos has effectively built its brand and loyalty.
2. Encourage a response.
Posing a question, offering a “did you know” or asking followers to fill in the blank to a statement will all garner information you can use. Whole Foods is a great example, always asking relevant, timely, thought-provoking, fun-to-answer questions, like: What is your favorite dish to make with Thanksgiving leftovers?
3. Evoke emotion.
Posts with emotional content get more shares and here is the why. This year, Disney ran a #shareyourears campaign. Every time someone posted an image on social media of themselves wearing Mickey ears with the aforementioned hashtag, Disney donated $5 to Make-A-Wish. Quick, simple and for a good, charitable cause.
Coors Light provides an incredible example when they played off #TheDress issue that plagued the U.S. a few winters back. It’s fun, clever, quick and relevant.
Now, back to the dogs and donuts and the one thing all of these posts do, but none explicitly say. Be authentic, be on brand. Any social media engagement tactic is only good and effective when it is a true, genuine reflection of who you are as a “person.”