3 Winning Rules of Thumb for Social Media

PAN Communications

I’m currently looking at a blog post that lists “30 ways to improve your social media strategy” and shaking my head. If you need to troll through this list (or take all 30 seriously), you've got bigger problems. Chances are you’re either overwhelmed or lack all the pieces in your own program. There’s a remedy, however to getting your social media program upright again, by following these three tenets:

  • Add Value. From tweets and memes to Vine videos and whitepapers; everything you produce must add value to audiences you’re trying to engage. The beauty of social media is the abundance of platforms and lingua franca specific to those platforms – namely the different shapes content can take and stories told. This bodes well for dabblers and deep-thinkers, but just make sure the story you’re telling is one that will improve the lives of those you’re reaching. This could be humor, research, news or customer service – but make sure it’s the right fit. And never waste their time. There’s nothing worse than one of your audience wishing for the last two minutes back because of you. This should drive your content strategy.
  • Drive engagement. What’s the point of a social media program if it’s one-sided? Broadcast your messages and you’ll find people will stop listening. Sure, most objectives revolve somewhere around driving the bottom line, but you can’t get there without engaging you’re audience. The goal is to drive a desirable action, so identify the best way to do that by testing content, asking questions or simply engaging for engagement’s sake – but do it and you’ll find yourself fostering valuable relationships and building trust. This should drive your community management and outreach strategies.
  • Have Measurable Outcomes. I've never met a client who didn't ask me to show them the ROI. When proposing social tactics, make sure you can measure their success. Not only that, but be prepared for clients who demand greater visibility in metrics overall. That means delivering ongoing insights and making real-time adjustments according to your metrics. Put the right tools in place and invest in premium, third-party tools if needed. This should drive your analytics strategy.

Ditch the fire hose of tips out there and focus on getting these three right every time. You’ll find your program performing better – and a few minutes back in your day.

Have your own thoughts on winning social media tenets? Tweet Jessica @jpaynebu or comment below.

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