More and more online businesses are using social networks to increase their online exposure, to increase sales or to increase their rankings (now that it’s confirmed the fact that social sharing is also correlated with search engine rankings).
But, are these businesses getting any results?
Is this method paying off or is it just a waste of time?
Sadly, there are too many cases, when social presence returns no value.
They made an account, installed the plugins on their website, asked all the employees to log in and started looking for people to join their social circle.
But then, nothing happened! No one wanted to join.
Why? What was wrong?
To avoid being one of those who find social networks useless, you must adapt to the social status. You must know how to act and what to do, and avoid wasting your time for nothing.
Check out these seven don’ts to guide you towards social glory.
1. Don’t be quiet in a noisy space.
On social networks things happen fast and content gets “old” more rapidly. The more people you have in your group (you follow, you are friends with, you are connected with) the crowded your dashboard will be.
Posts run fast one after the other, discussions are almost live and you must be really active and devoted to be able to capture all of what is going on there.
Of course you can always go back and take the course of events from where you left it, but it won’t be the same. If you don’t get yourself involved in discussions at the time they are held, when are going to? A week after? No one will care about what you say then.
On the other hand, to make yourself noticed on these platforms, you have to be consistent. When the posts are flowing so rapidly, yours will only be visible a few hours. After that it will be harder and harder to get noticed as it will go farther in the news flow .
Therefore, if your posts are too rare, people will forget about you.
So you have two solutions to avoid that:
1. Post regularly, so you will be seen often.
2. Extend the life of your posts with comments, replies, likes/retweets and so on. Whether we are talking about Twitter and your posts get retweeted or replied to, or we are talking about Facebook and you get comments and likes to your posts, either way, with every response an entry gets, it is restored as a new post.
Thus you have both chances to be seen by a larger group of people, regardless of their posting frequency, and to be seen more often.
2. Don’t grope, get to the point!
There is a huge difference between posts on a regular website and those on social networks.
On a regular website, visitors are prepared to spend some time to check out the website, to get a clue of what it is about and read some content.
But on social networks, people get in to catch up with the news, to read the latest and the most interesting stuff from their overall environment. They are in a hurry.
Therefore, you have only a few seconds to convince people to read further your post and only a few dozens characters to make your point. Use them wisely!
Make your posts short, concise and convincing! Work a little on your phrases and try to be both comprehensive and interesting.
3. Don’t be grouchy among joyful people.
Always remember that happiness sells and sadness doesn’t!
You must reflect your joy through both aspect and content.
So make your social profile look nice, cheerful, warm and so welcoming that people would feel good when they visit it.
I am definitely not suggesting you to transform your profile page into some pink, warm and fuzzy place (OMG! that would be actually awful) but it is a must to make it personal.
Your friends will remember your profile and will remain with the idea of comfort related to you. Coming back should be a pleasure for them.
Your posts should be likeable as well. You can’t be serious and grey all the time. I know we are at work, but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a little bit of fun.
Sneak in among your posts something cool, or funny or really interesting (other than work) and make people smooth their foreheads.
It will give them that nice feeling I was talking about. 😉
4. Don’t be a loner in a social community.
Social networking it’s about connecting with other people, sharing and discussing. Try to avoid becoming one of those accounts (I cannot say people) that use these platforms so selfishly, without even noticing that there are other people around them.
The purpose shouldn’t be to just post something on your wall, eventually read what other people say but never respond to anything and never interact with anybody!
It’s just not the way these thing are meant to be used!
Get involved in discussions, comment on your own and on others posts, share the interesting things you see at others, express what you like or dislike, be available for helping out and just…. be friendly!
Talking to people makes them feel noticed and valued. It gives them courage to act back and spares you from that image, any stranger has, of unavailability. So don’t be shy and connect with all your friends!
5. Don’t be boring to death
Don’t make the mistake of replicating in your social stream, the content of your website pages. There is no point in putting here the same content you have on your website or in your feed.
This way, the people that already know you will be bored to find content they have read before and those you manage to drive back to your website (for an actual conversion) will only get disappointed.
Instead of gaining traffic and fans, you loose them and build an ugly image.
Take the time and think. There must be something new you wish to share with your connections!
6. Don’t annoy your audience
Another big mistake made by many SEOs is to share the same articles on and on. Please, don’t share an article for five times a week! I don’t see the point in doing this other that annoying your audience.
It is ok to repeat a post at a certain amount of time thinking that in the meantime more people have joined your social circle and you wish for all of them to read your stuff.
Or maybe, you think that, in the past, your post might have been unnoticed or forgotten by now and push it up again. This is indeed useful. But that does not mean sharing the same stuff over and over again.
New, updated and useful content is the key to build authority.
7. Don’t hide away your true self
“People are more likely to follow a person rather than a business, and much more likely to engage with a person rather than a logo”. You probably hear this a lot. Even though, I will go on and tell it to you again. In social places, only humans are welcomed. And humans have a face, a voice and a personality. So you must have them too.
Showing your face is pretty simple…. You just add a photo of yours, so people would know who are they talking with. If you add more photos (not taken in the shower, of course 😀 ), interesting and funny, people will like you even more.
They will see you more as a welcoming and friendly person and they will feel more comfortable in talking and interacting with you. It’s an easy way of letting them to know you, other than through your work.
The voice part could be a little bit trickier, but I’m sure you can manage it. All you have to do is naturally interact with your friends. Just talk, express your opinions, your thoughts and your personality.
And don’t be afraid to be wrong, to ask for advice or to reveal your uncertainties. All that makes you even more human and even more likeable.
Remember that the purpose of your social presence is to make friends and connections, not to feed your ego.
Do you do social?
These are the don’ts. But what things do you do to achieve your goals on social networks?
You are welcome to tweet us or write a comment, if you would like to share some tips or thoughts with us.
Photo credit: webtreats