Monday, April 29, 2013

Why so serious? Let's talk about content

"All content should be linked to at least one of your products or services." according to @predaicker

I disagree.  I find fan pages and social media accounts who chronically post about themselves or their own businesses quite boring.  It comes across, to me, as self-absorbed and close-minded.  That being said, my rule of thumb in helping my clients with their social media presence is to make sure you are referring to your own business, products, cause, or project no less than every fourth or fifth post.  You DO need to remind people why they like, follow or support your business but in lieu of shoving your products (or self, in the case of celebrities) down your followers' throats, I subscribe to a good balance that can be found by utilizing nonesense and silliness when engaging your fans.

When 93% of the content that is going viral is photos, do you think it's best to share a link to your online store twice a week? Or inform your fans how many reps you did on squats at the gym this afternoon?  Let me just cut to the chase, NO.  

You can't afford to hire a Social Media Manager to handle your fan pages for you. Okay fine, but in a recent interview with an actress she disclosed to me "I'm scared to death of embarrassing myself online. I don't understand who can see what I post."  If you don't understand that fan pages, Twitter and Pinterest are public content, you need to NOT be on Social Media. Or hire someone to do it for you.  According to many bloggers and statisticians, you can't afford not to be engaging your followers.  How else will you spread the word about your crowd-funding campaign for your low budget film?  How else will you inform your (potential) audience of WHO YOU ARE?  CEOs, Board Presidents have very real concerns about the people who have access to their branded, corporate image and its adherence to their company's policy and procedure manuals.  Easy fix as far as I'm concerned, but that's because I do not fear social media and my clients trust me to have their best interests in mind as I hit publish.  Paranoia only leads to your business having check-ins on a blank page created from individuals who ARE living their lives online.  Care to join them?

According to SocialBakers, "This volume ... rose to 36.7 average 'Likes' by October 2012" per Facebook user.  You can post your status updates, preferably an original quote from the CEO of your business, feed a link or two a week back to your blog or website, but if you don't want to see an 'unlike' increase when people read that statistic and realize "OMG, I have WAY too many 'likes' on my profile, let's unlike some of these pages."  Do you want yours to be one of them?  What you want is to ENGAGE your audience, so go ahead and post something that makes them smile, chuckle, laugh, giggle or get goosebumps. These emotional responses lead to users clicking on 'like' and pressing that 'share' button 75% of the time (okay fine I made that up but look at George Takei! Come on...)

What we really care about is that little stat below "31% prompted to purchase" after connecting with a product via social media. 


The way I see social media, probably stemming from my background in sales, is that 'likes' are similar to cold-calling. Now this was way back in the days when we still used pagers but... for every 100 cold calls I made, I got roughly ten orders and for every ten orders (or 100 cold calls) I'd gain a loyal client, i.e. recurring, regular business account aka $$$$.

I can't imagine that social media isn't very much like cold calling.  I've had several people approach me with the desire of "5000 likes" or "10,000 followers" and I set them straight pretty fast that I'm probably not their type of girl and this is when I begin to talk dirty...
I am of the opinion (and I very well may stand alone) that having genuine, involved, engaged followers is far more productive than having thousands and watching your insights have a 1-2% interaction rate.  Are you sitting dormant, feeling like you're talking to a wall or are you finding like-minded individuals who will share your message for you? How many groups have you joined that are related to your company or what's YOUR engagement level?  Are you only posting when you need something from someone else, or is your business an active supporter? Maybe your project will be served better by a Private Social Networking site...?

My biggest pet peeve?  "We're only ten likes away from 1,000 fans!"  So...?

My favorite type of engagement? "For every new like in the next 24 hours, we'll donate one dollar to... Please share!"

See where I'm going?

Thank you MetEdge (at least that's who Google tells me to whom I need to give copyright credit) for taking the words right out of my head (and saving me hours of work from creating a fabulous infographic) 

Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate.

Have you liked your own clients' fan pages? Are you retweeting your followers? Are you pinning to a collaborative group board?  Are you commenting back when your fans reach out to engage with your business?

Are you saying PLEASE and THANK YOU?

Self-indulgent, non-emotional, dry, mundane posts are NOT INTERESTING.  Your fans want to be moved, entertained or, at the very least, LOL once in a while. 

So go ahead, post a sarcastic ecard, share that meme that made you laugh on your wall.  (Don't steal and repost content, that's shitty - just share)  Hell write them like I do.  But business doesn't have to be so dry. Life doesn't need to be so serious.  Just keep it PG-13 if your corporation sells children's products and remember, that what you want is ENGAGEMENT and EXPOSURE.  Once you have them tearing up or giggling, liking and sharing with their friends THEN you can tell your newest fans and followers what they came there for.


BLOG POST AUTHORED BY: Julie Miller, President of Lady Luck Consulting

 



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