Article by Wendy McCance
Not too long ago I had a client choose to go in another direction with their social media. I had been working on their Facebook page, Twitter account and wrote blog posts for their website. Along came another company who offered all sorts of bright and shiny promises of what they could carry out to gain more customers and at a cheaper price to boot. My client decided they just couldn’t resist the promises of things that are too good to be true and took the leap with this new company.
All the hard work that had been implemented over several months vanished within a couple of weeks. I felt bad for my old client. I truly enjoyed working with them, cared about their success and was frustrated that there was nothing I could do or say to get them back on the right track. All I could do was stand back and watch everything fall apart.
I know it’s tempting to get what sounds like a great amount of exposure for very little money, but I am here to tell you that nothing works as well as organically showing customers that you care about them through helpful information, special offers and opportunities to interact directly through these platforms.
Let me give you some examples:
You might be promised big numbers of followers, but numbers don’t matter if they are manufactured. A company will do better with 125 followers all of whom chose to like your page than 1,000 followers that seem to come out of thin air.
I watched the company I had worked for triple their numbers in a 48 hour period. There were no promotions, ads or links that would have increased the number of followers. On top of that, the page showed that 2 people had visited yet the number of new followers was ridiculous.
When you have a Facebook page (for instance), the key is to engage the readers. You want people to share your information, comment on what you post and go to your website. After all, the goal is to increase sales. Getting people to want to learn more about you by going to your website is the first step in getting that sale. Your Facebook page should have links to helpful information, questions to the customers showing you care and information about your company. Filling a page with silly quotes or greetings of the holiday does nothing if that’s all the page represents. How are people supposed to get to know your company let alone want to learn more about you when what you are sharing has very little to do with the company?
If you look at one Facebook post and can’t easily describe what the company does just from that one post, then you have lost. The interest and a potential new customer are gone. When you look down a company Facebook page, you can tell the company is doing well when people have liked, shared and commented on what you are posting.
So you are probably wondering how to get more traffic to your website when there is no movement on your social media platforms?
One of the ways to get more traffic to your website is to write informative blog posts. You can then put the link to the post on your social media platforms and get additional traffic to your website. Without blog posts, it becomes much tougher to get people to just stop by.
One thing every company must do!
Every company no matter how computer savvy they are should have a person who is able to personally check the stats on the company website. They should know how much traffic the site is getting on a daily basis. If the stats are low, it’s imperative to find a way to raise the numbers. If there is a spike in the numbers, it is critical to find out why. Did you just advertise a discount? Maybe you posted an article that really helped consumers. Being aware of what your traffic looks like is extremely important, especially if you have hired someone to handle your social media. You will want to make sure spending the extra money is paying off. If the numbers aren’t growing or worse, have dropped, you need to reconsider who you are working with for your social media needs.
When I was working with my prior client, Twitter was a big deal. The numbers of followers grew because we conversed with the people following us. We also looked for new people to follow that we felt were influential. All Twitter communications have stopped. The only items posted now come straight from their Facebook page. Asking people over and over to check out a Facebook page that has no other information in the tweet will do nothing for you. When you aren’t recognizing new followers by thanking them, retweeting one of their relevant tweets or conversing with them when they share your information you could easily lose all of the people you worked so hard to gain. Unfortunately, people are looking for a quick fix. There isn’t much time to get someone’s attention let alone keep it on social media. If you aren’t on top of your social media sites by posting and engaging on a regular basis, people will grow bored and move on.
The bottom line is this, a high number of followers means nothing when there is nothing you can point to showing why you suddenly got more attention. If there are no direct conversations with potential customers and no links going to your website, you have to wonder why you are bothering with social media at all.
If you decide to hire an individual or a company to take care of your social media needs, research them. See what they are doing on social media. Do they regularly write blog posts? Do they interact on a regular basis with the people who follow them? Do you get a sense that the conversations are based on knowledge, respect and care for the customer? Do the customers care about what has been posted?
Remember, this is your reputation that you are playing with. Once something hits the internet, it stays there. Make sure you are hiring someone who is reputable and truly cares for your company as though it were their very own. Numbers and cheap prices mean very little if there is no other benefit to you. The goal is to grow your company and the more organically it is handled, the better the quality and the devotion of the customers you will have.
To contact Wendy McCance about a writing or social media assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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