How to master Social Media Engagement like a Pro: 6 mindblowing tips from leading Experts
Robot or Human?
Who will be more successful with Social Media in the long run?
Interesting question, right?
Today, I want to touch on THE HUMAN FACTOR of Social Media rather than technical or analytical aspects.
A point that sometimes seems to be neglected in Social Media marketing.
During our busy days, we tend to forget that there are also humans on the other side of the computer: customers, prospects or colleagues. Tools make automation easy and time efficient that we often do not think about the real engagement.
Let me ask you a question:
What happens during coffee breaks or when you pass by a colleagues’ office? Exactly – you gossip, talk about the news, your weekend activities, how the kids are doing, etc..
And even if you do not touch that personal level, you discuss work in a much more casual way, while productivity does not suffer. On the contrary, it just makes the work related discussion more enjoyable.
Why do you think Social Media is different? Why would you act in a different way? You want to connect and establish relationships, like at any other workplace.
Thinking about all the above, do you still not believe that friendliness or warmth is essential for being successful in the long term?
Here are 6 aspects, advocated by Social Media experts, that will convince you and make you a better marketer:
#1 Share engaging content
Do you enjoy running your business? Do you enjoy customer relationships? Show it!
Coming back to my previous question; what do you like to talk about during coffee breaks? Who does not like to be entertained and have a good laugh during a tough working day to relax a bit?
As in the ‘real world’, it is absolutely ok to share a funny picture, a joke or inspire people with a quote on Social Media. It is a good way to connect with people. Serious business and a human touch do not exclude each other.
I want to share with you 2 examples of Facebook Pages that master this combination to perfection: Donna Moritz – Socially Sorted [FB page here] and Kim Garst – Boom Social [FB page here] are highly successful entrepreneurs. Their expertise is reflected by high-quality Social Media posts. But in addition, both share a lot of engaging material; quotes, funny videos, etc.. You are willing to spend more time on their pages and you are more likely to interact with their content. It is a win-win situation for both parties. Who can ask for more?
#2 Add a portion of humor to your marketing
Do you run a serious business? And you believe that a sense of humor is not allowed? Let me convince you that you can build something unique just by adding a bit of humor and entertainment;
Andrea Vahl is a highly recognized Social Media expert. In addition to her consulting and speaking activities, she created Grandma Mary to combine business with humor – and she totally nails it [Grandma Mary Social Media Educator]. Andrea uses her comedy experience to turn education and learning into something enjoyable.
Want another example? Andrea and Phyllis Khare [her blog], co-founder of Social Media Manager School, give ‘Social Talk’ webinars with wigs and hats. This might sound weird, but really, check it out and you will see how much fun it is. They transport the fun they are having to the viewers and a one hour webinar flies by quickly. The high-quality content of their webinars combined with the human factor is one of a kind.
Enjoying your work and running a serious and extremely successful business does not exclude each other. Even more, educating without pointing the finger, that’s what encourages followers.
#3 Don’t always talk about yourself or your product
Why are you on Social Media? I guess you want to promote your business, service or product. Your goal is to increase sales, get more subscribers, more leads, shares, likes – you name it.
But there is one important aspect you need to take into account. Your customers/clients want to feel valued. You have to provide useful information to questions they might have. This means, that you cannot always promote yourself, your business, your products, your service. You have to provide something in addition.
Here is a quote from Mary Smith that brings it to the point:
Think and act like a member first and a marketer second.
Mari Smith, SMMW15
A general recommendation is the so-called 70-30 rule [sometimes you also find 80-20]. When using Social Media you should focus only 30% of the time promoting your products and services while sharing curated content 70% of your time [Source: SocialTimes]. This rule brings the above mentioned added value your clients and customers are thankful for. Furthermore, you also show your appreciation for the work of others.
#4 Don’t schedule engagement
Do you receive lots of automated messages every day? How many of them do you actually read? How much appreciated do you feel, when a Direct Message (DM) on Twitter thanks you and tells you that s/he is so happy that you followed? How serious do you take this message?
Or, are you one of those who send automated DMs? Stop it – immediately. Remind yourself: Every follower counts. There is no way that you can automate engagement.
It does not take a lot of time every day. Set aside some minutes to see who follows you and send a message. This tip is one of the most repeated amongst the top experts;
People want to deal with real people that aren’t scheduling engagement.
Melonie wrote an excellent article about the ‘Do’s and Dont’s of Social Media automation’.
Want to successfully perform Social Media marketing? You need to show compassion and engage with a personal touch.
#5 Use Emojis ?
I know, many of you are still convinced that emojis is something that only teenagers use or that you might use for private messages. But statistics reveal higher engagement rate for tweets with emojis. This finding shows that personal touch is appreciated in business life. Obviously, emojis cannot be used at all occasions, neither should they be overused. But it does not mean that you are less serious about your business if you use them once in a while.
So far in 2016, emoji usage in marketing messages has continued to increase by over 20% month to month!
If you do not know how to add them to your tweet, the Wikihow article will tell you [click here]. ?
#6 Mistakes are ok – but be human in the way you respond
You might try to deny it but you are human, and you make mistakes. But that’s ok. The only important thing is, how you respond to these mistakes. Be human, be honest, don’t try to hide it. A great article by Kim Garst deepens this topic and shows some interesting examples.
This aspect is especially important for a customer relation service. To establish a 2-way communication line is crucial. If you don’t know the answer to a question, admit it. Tell your customer, that you will search for the answer. Not knowing everything is also human. You are not an omniscient robot. And the best about this is: people can relate to it.
Some final words
Of course, none of the above will bring you success when you do not deliver your job or do not produce good content. But if you do, you will stand out of the crowd by applying these simple tips. You will be recognized as someone enjoyable but also trustworthy to work and connect with.
A robot might outrun you in the beginning, but going all the distance, you will win.
You will be rewarded for being who you are.
Automation is necessary. We all know this, and we do not question it. It is an indispensable time-saving tool. You cannot be online 24/7 to provide content to partners/customers in another time zone. You need to focus on your core business in case you don’t earn your living with Social Media. And let’s be honest, sometimes we all need to disconnect for a while as we still have a private life to live.
All of the above is valid, and yet there are certain boundary conditions to automation. It does not matter how good your automated DM is written there is always a negative feeling attached to it.
Across all experts, it is repeatedly recommended to set aside some minutes of the day to engage with your followers, fans and customers.
Do you already engage with a personal touch and see the benefits?
Share your experience. Leave a comment below.
Image Source: Pixabay