Guest post by Hoa Cong
Most corporations are looking to social media as a vibrant platform to increase sales and profits. However, you can't just open a Facebook account or blog and expect people to come flocking in. You have to actually connect with your customer base and create relationships.
Here are five critical elements that can make or break your social media campaign:
Choose your platforms wisely. Social media extends far beyond Facebook. Find out where your customers are on the internet and go there. If you sell to creative types, set up a blog where users can contribute content. For sports types, try an interactive game. The possibilities are endless, and a company that fails to do its homework is destined for failure.
Speak your customers' language. Every group has its own language and acronyms. To market to them, you must also speak this language, especially in social media environments. The best way to learn to do this is to read the blogs, Facebook pages and other sites that are created by your clients and customers. When you use -- note: not overuse -- the correct language, you gain instant credibility.
Keep a cohesive message. The fastest way to lose people is to have too many messages across online platforms. Remember that your customers use multiple social media venues themselves, as well as traditional media. Integrate your message across all so your customers see you as the focused company you are.
Be active in your chosen forums. Your blog, Facebook page or other platforms are not simply advertisements to lure in customers. Social media is interactive by nature, and you'll lose credibility if you're not active in posting, giveaways and two-way communication. People can sniff out fakes, and it will cost you.
- Let your customers give input. People who engage in social media expect to be able to interact with you, but also to be heard. Campaigns where customers can submit ideas for new products, advertising, or slogans can bring considerable traffic and give your customers a sense of participation in your product. When they feel like part of your group, they are much more likely to recommend and use your products.
For the today's companies, the only thing worse than not engaging in social media is to do it poorly. As the guidelines suggest, a cohesive message delivered in a truly interactive environment will bring out the most value of your online campaign.
Hoa is a representative for Capterra, an extensive online catalog of more than 300 business software directories.
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