A few short years ago, many businesses considered social media a passing trend, something that “kids these days” might use, but certainly not companies. Nowadays, I think we can all agree that social media platforms offer a valuable (and mostly free) way to reach customers and gain insight into their behaviors and preferences. Most businesses – no matter the type or size – would be unwise to forgo social media and miss out on the opportunity to share meaningful connections with current and potential customers. The bigger question is: how do you get it right?
If you want to do social media right, you have to have a strategy. You definitely don’t want to be that company that wastes time posting irrelevant (or worse, annoying) content that everyone ignores and un-follows. Social media should provide an extension of your brand and complement your overall marketing strategy.
A successful strategy requires knowing your brand and your audience, clarifying your goals and how you’ll measure success, practicing consistency, and being realistic about how much time and energy you can put into it. Like most marketing strategies, social media isn’t one-size fits all. What works for one company might not work for you.
That said, we do have a helpful tool to share with you!
The Social Media Equation
The social media equation helps solve a common problem: most companies fail to connect with their desired audience on social media because they insist on talking at them rather than engaging with them. To help increase chances of engagement, we recommend this equation, inspired by Eve Mayer’s book The Social Media Business Equation:
20% Entertain/ Empathize:
Tell thoughtful, relevant stories that promote human connection. Examples of this type of post include something humorous (if it fits with your brand’s voice), helpful tips, employee or client stories, or holiday posts.
Foster true conversation through meaningful interaction. Examples include liking, commenting and sharing relevant content from people or other companies and replying to comments on your social media accounts.
After you’ve put in the time to create the content above (so roughly 80% of your social media content), then you can ask for what you want.
Side Note: We realize that some posts might overlap in these categories, which is totally fine. However, make sure to ask yourself, “What is the one core message of this post?” before you publish it and then adjust the post if the core message is unclear.
Curious about how to you might put this equation to work for your company?
That’s where we come in.
We offer a variety of ways to help take your strategy to the next level – from creating a professionally-designed tile or two for a special event, holiday or campaign to consulting on social media strategy and executing campaigns from start to finish.
Here are a few examples of the kinds of work we’ve done with clients:
During the 2016 rebrand, we helped revitalize the Novant Health Charlotte Marathon’s social media accounts as part our larger strategy to increase engagement and conversation. Since then, we continue to provide social media support by designing about five tiles per month. We also meet with their marketing team every month to discuss what’s working and what’s not, and brainstorm ideas for both attracting new followers and engaging their current ones.
The marketing team at Hunstad / Kortesis enjoys managing their social media accounts themselves, but they like to partner with us to create professionally designed tiles as part of special multi-channel campaigns to promote events and other offers.
Samaritan’s Purse has partnered with us to create social media tiles designed to uplift and inspire their followers. They’ve brought us in for specific campaigns to create beautifully designed, unique tiles that give their followers pause and are easily reposted and shared.