The Social Media Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How… -Answered!
Are you actively engaged with followers on social media? Have you never even thought about social media for your business? Wondering the Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How of Social Media? Then read this article from Quad-B to learn more about taking control of your business social media pages.
Who should post?
Deciding who should be responsible for running social media for your business is a difficult decision that needs some thought put into it. On one hand it should be the business owner, however, the business owner has a lot of other responsibilities and the time commitment to running a social media channel effectively may prove too difficult or time-consuming exhaustive, overbearing, overwhelming. So you could have someone else in the office responsible for handling social media, but if they don’t have an in-depth knowledge of the business they may fail to answer comments or engage with followers.
The decision to run a social media channel is not one to be taken lightly, you need someone who (1) knows the business, (2) has the time to dedicate to it, (3) is able to connect with people and shares a passion for being social, and (4) can actively engage followers.
For those of you with a small number of employees interested in tag-teaming the social media channel, you may choose to represent yourself as one entity, or differentiate individual managers.
What should I post?
The content of your posts is probably the most important decision for your social media channels. Start off with setting a tone for your posts, and be sure to follow through with it; you can have a strictly professional tone, or one that is more casual and laid back.
Once you’ve decided on the tone, the rest of the content will fall into place. More casual pages, for example, may post giveaways, reblogs or reshares of others’ content, and blur the line between casual and professional. The opposite of this being a page that is more professional and may only share news on products and services in the industry, press releases, contests may be run, and posts are generally of original content, unless there is major news in the industry to share.
Both styles of pages work, but you have to choose one. It also depends on the personality of who you selected to do the posting; a casual page may be more fun for an extrovert to run, but may be too much to handle for an introvert when comments come rolling in.
Where should I post?
The major social media channels include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Google+, and Tumblr. Determine where to post by viewing your own analytics and deciding what kind of posts resonate with your followers on which networks. As an example, a business may find that Facebook may be great for re-sharing their blog posts, using polls, and sharing casual photos of the office. However, they may find that Twitter is a better choice for sharing inspiring quotations, announcing new team members, projects, or upcoming events. Linkedin may be the best place for sharing new products and services or announcing a new location.
We definitely recommend you claim your page on each social network so nobody else can create a page pretending to be you. From there, you can choose how engaged you want to be on each network.
When should I post?
Probably second only to determining what to post is deciding how often to post. This surely differs depending on the content, but it is generally advised to post multiple times per week but no more than twice per day. Posting too frequently could cause followers to get annoyed and unsubscribe from you, and worse, push content away before people have even seen it. On the other hand, posting too sparingly means you might miss people or make the business seem stagnant.
Always respond to comments and inquiries on your page. The point of social marketing is to directly reach your viewers. Once they take the time to contact you, promptly thank them with a response. Actively engaging your followers is crucial to the success (or failure) of a social media page.
The best times of day and which specific days to post will vary by industry. Try and think of your ideal followers and pick the time and day when you are most likely to reach them. As an example, if you were targeting teens, you wouldn’t post during school hours, you would wait to post after 3. If you are targeting bankers, you would wait to post until after 5 in most cases. Or you can always fall back between noon and one o’clock which will allow you to hit people who may be browsing their computers behind their desks at lunchtime. (That’s how you’ll get to us “worker-bees”!)
Why should I post?
A question from a lot of business owners is “Why should I care about social media at all?” The facts are finally in, at least 40% of respondents to a private survey took some action, (whether that be making a phone call, visiting a website, subscribing to a page) after being engaged on social media (whether that be from seeing an ad, post, or share) with branded content from a business.
Social media allows you to connect personally with your followers and tap into a deep word-of-mouth referral stream. People are going to be on social media talking about your business no matter what you do. Having your own page gives you a place to respond to criticism and a place to push out what you want to say.
How should I post?
While there are utilities out there that will manage the posting for you, it is almost always better to do it yourself. Having someone else do the posts for you is placing another wall between you and your followers, which is contrary to the whole point of social media. Not only that, but it is difficult to find someone who knows the ins-and-outs of your industry as well as you do. An intern may be able keep posts showing up on your page, but your social engagement will suffer if followers ask a question and get generic responses, or if your page suddenly starts sharing things that don’t interest your followers.
Services which automatically post pre-scheduled posts are another option, but are often penalized in the ranking algorithms of what content appears to followers. As a result, those posts are seen by fewer people.