1. A social media strategy depends on the ability to develop relationships and interaction. Bear in mind that social media and networking is all about communication and engagement. The quantity or number of followers you have does not necessarily translate into quality contacts or purchasing clients. It is more important to build relationships and trust over the various social networks.
2. Choose the social network that suits your profile, product or professional aims. A network like LinkedIn is perfect for the professional and business person who wants to connect and interact with others in his or her field; while Pinterest is more visual and great for displaying products and images that can promote your brand or business.
3. Continuity is everything. If your aim is to build a presence online or to increase brand awareness, then regular postings and updates to your social networks are essential. Not updating your Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus accounts for a week or more will be negatively perceived by your followers and you will lose influence. Although the average rate varies from network to network, you should post at least five times per day on Twitter and two to five times on other networks, at a minimum.
4. Content is everything. You should not only post items about your business or products but also post and update information from other interests and areas. In other words, you should have a varied range of content. Remember that you are not advertising in the conventional sense of the term but rather building a presence and creating a persona for yourself or your business on the Internet to encourage direct interaction and engagement. Your audience want to interact with a person and not a product. Write about world events, curate news and interesting snippets that show your wider interests and concerns.
5. Make use of sites (many of which are free) that help you curate news and articles of interest, such as Scoop.it. There are many curatorial sites online now that allow you to quickly create a page of interesting and informative information that can be disseminated via Twitter and Google Plus.
6. Use Pinterest to collect and display images and links that relate to you product or profession. Pinterest has become one of the most visited social networks on the planet and is an excellent way of presenting your interests, views and products. There are a plethora of articles, books and comments now being published about how to market on Pinterest. Have a look at Imaginet’s Pinterest site – Imaginet will be updating their popular eBook on Pinterest in the near future.
7. Explore the full potential of each social network. Each network has many ways to promote and market your interests and business which might not be evident on the surface. For example, while Pinterest is seen as being best for image intensive product marketing, it can be used in many creative ways. Pinterest boards, for example, can be used to create a very exciting and visual personal resume. See Imaginet’s guide and our recent article “Pinterest as an organizer and planner“.
8. Research and keep up to date. The social media environment is incredibly dynamic and is changing each day. It is essential to keep up to date with the news and changes in this field.
9. Take advantage of the latest marketing and promotions sites and applications. There are number of new and innovative social media applications that can enhance your media presence. One of these worth registering for is Rebelmouse. This site collates items for all your different social networks, as well as RSS feeds, in a visually appealing and professional single front page that you can use to market yourself. Rebelmouse also now allows for different category pages that can be automatically set up so that it becomes a website in its one right displaying all your posts.
10. Social media analysis is essential. Knowing how your tweets are being received and how your Facebook fans and Pinterest following are progressing, is important for social media optimization. For example, if your retweets and mentions increase on a certain day it is important to find why some posts are more popular than others, so that you can determine the type of content you should be creating. There are new applications to help with analytics, such as Hootsuite and Twitalyzer. Watch this space for an article on the latest social media management and analysis tools.