Sorry guys, I had to, but don’t worry, it’s just an acronym.
While I do spend the majority of my time lovingly doting over a number of client accounts online so much that it seems like social media is could literally be “bae,” and much like your “bae,” social media can be an incredible force to reckon with, it’s also something that’s Becoming Absolutely Essential. As challenging as social media is and regardless of whether or not you’re active on your own social media channels on a personal level, your business or brand HAS to be. PERIOD.
I’ll never understand why, at this day and age, brands and companies are either hardly active online, or avoiding it all together. If you’re looking for tips on how to approach your social engagement and overall strategy, this acronym should help you remember.
As I’ve touched on before, I like to think of social media as a lifestyle play when it comes to the type of visual content you share on your channels. Understanding this is important because it provides the framework needed to get your mind in the right spot to begin understanding your content strategy or your content mix. We’ve already discussed the different content “buckets” or content “staples” in which you can begin to categorize your content in a previous post, so the next step is to really begin to differentiate yourself online. In order to do so, you need to pick up a few good habits that will help you once you begin posting and managing your channels — something we in the industry refer to as “community management.”
Your online persona is a digital reflection of your brand, and as such, it needs to be constantly nurtured and shown a good amount of LOVE (that’s another nifty acronym!) If you remember to LOVE, you’ll be well on your way to killin’ it in the social media game — who doesn’t like a whole lotta lovin’? Peep the strategy below!
Listen to your audience and get to know what they like. This is absolutely essential in the creation of an online digital persona that people actually WANT to engage with. In the industry, this is referred to as “social listening” and it’s absolutely imperative. For the larger companies, there are products online that actually do this such as Sprout Social, Synthesio, NUVI, and more — many of which can actually analyze social content and provide you with a sentiment analysis, but for smaller companies and brands, simply hoping on social channels and looking by hand works just fine.
Observe everyone. Competitors, your target demographic and, most importantly, what people are saying about your brand (or industry) online already. You know the term “keep your friends close but your enemies closer?” The same applies here. You’d be surprised at what you can learn just by watching your competitors. Let them make the mistakes so you don’t have to!
Voice who you are and how you’re different. This should be worked into your content mix and overall strategy on a regular basis as one of your content staples. What can you add to the conversations already taking place about your brand or industry? What can you bring to the table that isn’t already there? New insight? New products? Figure out how you’re different and why people need you and speak up! Social humanizes brands in a way that was never possible before. Take advantage of that and becomes your followers’ best friend.
Engage continually. Don’t just put out content, that won’t work. While putting out good content is important, you need to carry on conversations with people and reach out to new ones. Followers, non-followers, fans and competitors. Literally everyone. The more you engage on social media, the greater your reach and the more impressions your account will get across the digital world! That’s a recipe for success.
Acronyms are fun and sometimes pretty stupid. Thinking of social media as a love interest has got to be up there with some of the stranger things to draw a similarity to but it’s true. I always tell my interns, you get out what you put in, and social media is the same. If you show your channels and strategy a lot of love, you’ll get a lot of love in return. If you don’t? Well… you might end up sleeping on the couch.