It’s amazing how humans are wired. We have the “herd” mentality in our DNA – we are better together. Have you ever seen a social butterfly who’s always alone… if they’re sane? No.
As a matter of fact, many business networks have turned to social events to make sales, grow recruitment, solidify their base and create brand evangelists. I’m sure you’ve been invited to one in the past. What makes them so successful? People have FUN! Sure, they do business; but what takes place most is socializing. A joke here; a discussion on personal likes, travels and hobbies; school pride and rivalry ribbing; and yes, seeds are planted for business.
Now, when one goes to these functions, do they get offended if someone asks a business question? Yes and no. Yes, if the person did no socializing and went straight for the jugular! No, if they met you, made small talk, came to enjoy the conversation and now feel they know you a little.
Social-media marketing is exactly like this! Don’t forget the “social” in social media!
What people love most about socials is what they crave in social media: the relationship aspect of it all. The only thing that has changed is that you can’t have a drink online – unless of course you connect via video and toast each other. Hmmm! Now that’s a concept!
Many social-media marketing campaigns fail because they forget to engage with their following. They don’t reply much. When they do, it’s VERY professional – heaven forbid they see a real person in you! Stop trying to be stuffy and be yourself, and you will see people flock to you.
So how can you be social online? Let’s look at a few ways.
The temptation is to post everything about your business. The thinking is it’ll lead to more views, clicks and sales. If you’re Nike, Apple, Coca Cola, Microsoft or Google, absolutely! However, other than the iconic brands, people want to follow people. AND, no one likes a narcissist.
Ever notice at a party that one person who makes every conversation about himself or herself? Or the person who just got involved in network marketing or MLM, who takes every conversation as an opportunity to convince you how happy, excited, healthier and wealthier he or she is? Do you notice everyone avoids them? This is called a CLUE! (Read, Caring is Not Just Good Character; It’s Good Business.)
The same thing happens online.
When I share content on social media, about 85% of it is not mine. It’s curated content that is either:
The other 15% is my content.
Imagine you were at that aforementioned party and Joe Shmuckatelly was trying to get your attention for his new MLM business. Whenever you made a comment, he ignored it and plowed through with his talking points. How long would you endure that conversation?
The same thing happens online. If people make a comment, pay a compliment, share your content and you ignore them, they’ll think you’re ungrateful and full of yourself. You did a wonderful job of gaining their interest and then you sabotaged yourself by ignoring them.
After spending all that time, effort and money to garner traction and traffic to your website, why would you throw it all away by being complacent? It makes no sense. If you do your job well, you may be inundated; but that’s a good problem to have. You can outsource certain things, or make it a point to put a specific hour a day aside for replies. You can even answer in bulk, when it makes sense. Imagine seeing this kind of reply, what would you think?
“I want to thank everyone for commenting and sharing. WOW! You make me feel special! I will do my best to reply to all of you, but if you don’t get a reply, I apologize in advance. I only have so much time, since I have to continue to develop all this wonderful content you love so much.”
My first impression: he or she is a down-to-earth, gracious, people person – the kind I’d like to have a beer with. The second: he or she is GOOD! Look at all the traffic and fuss! What might I be missing?
If your business is growing due to your social-media efforts, remember that the sales, comments, sharing and adulation come from human beings who like to be appreciated as well. Don’t let your ego undo what you built.
When you see a birthday, wish happy birthday! When you see an anniversary, congratulate them! A holiday comes around, wish everyone a happy or merry (fill in the blank). If they post an article, take a look at it. You may not be able to look at all of them, but the ones you could speak to or interest you, read them and leave a comment. If they retweet you, retweet them back.
These are the actions that show relationship, caring and consideration. When people see you’re LIKEABLE—not just credible—you have a winning formula.
So as you plan your content calendar, think, “If I were going to a social gathering or conducting one of my own, what would I do to make my guests feel welcomed and special? What would I do to meet people, start a friendship and business relationship?” Then curate and create. You’ll find your efforts will be well rewarded!