By PETRA SMITH
IF MARKETING success was built on simply creating a social media profile and posting content, there would be a lot more profitable businesses out there.
Creating and posting relevant media only works when you match it with social interaction and build a community. The word “social” is there for a reason.
Think about it as attending a party, looking your best, but speaking to no one. Would anyone leave thinking how great it was to meet you? Make yourself the most interesting person in the room, in social media terms.
1. Define, and keep focused on, “why”
If you don’t have a good reason to be at the party, you might want to consider staying at home. The purpose of social media is to create an online community that will support you on your business journey. Creating viral content is not the goal; creating sustainable brand presence is.
Think strategically about your “why”, and only do what makes business sense. Otherwise, you might find it difficult to justify the ROI. Don’t use a platform just because you think everyone else is doing it. Think about where your target audience spend time, consider how they communicate, and what they value. You might have a lot of interesting things to say, but if you’re at a wrong party, you’ll struggle to engage.
2. Don’t confuse tactics with strategy
With social media marketing, there is a misconception that all it takes is to show up, and the internet will welcome you.
There’s more to it than understanding the algorithm and knowing the hashtags. Social media platforms are businesses too, and their job is to keep users for as long as possible. Remember, if you don’t pay for a service, you are the product.
You’re joining a crowded space; there is no need for more noise. But there is always space for more value — and it’s your job to share this. Don’t try to impress the algorithm. Impress the target audience.
You need to build your community by finding those that you want to be at your party and make it easy for them to find you. Without a clear strategy and approach, this will be a silent disco. Be proactive and build a long-term strategy that aligns with your business goals.
3. Read the room
Know who you are interacting with and communicate as you would face-to-face. Don’t try to be everything to everyone — do “you”.
One of the reasons why we post on social media is because we can modify what we say, how we say it, and the way we look. What makes a difference is authenticity. Show who you are, interact, be kind, and avoid negativity.
Treat your social media communities as a room of people you want to spend time with. You don’t need to be liked by everyone. What matters are the relationships you care about.
And remember that follower numbers aren’t relevant. Long-term relationships will fuel your business growth.