Monday, March 3, 2014

Three Steps to Effective Follow-Through in Social Marketing

It's one thing to have an active social network account with scores of fans and followers, and another to regularly provide information and incentives to keep people interested. Unless you monitor your profiles for feedback and follow up on concerns and questions, however, you will soon discover these online hubs become stale and provide nothing more than another source for inbound linking. Management of social networking page is not unlike tending a garden - your attentiveness and care fosters growth, and like the bees that collect pollen to spread to corners you may not notice people will assist in your account's popularity if they feel it's worth promoting. 

It goes without saying, then, that you (or whomever is in charge of your social marketing) remains on top of monitoring your accounts. The longer it appears your pages and statuses are neglected, the worse it looks for your company, and it may allow competitors or spammers to overtake your space. Follow-up on feedback, and follow through on social promotions. Here are just a few ways to achieve this level of dependability. 

Respond/Reply: If somebody posts a question on your Facebook wall, answer it. If somebody plugs your Twitter account during a #followfriday spree, acknowledge it, and thank YouTube members who compliment your videos. Even if a fan makes a general comment, or promotes something unrelated to your company on the fan wall (it will happen, but do not chide the poster and risk alienation), don't let the opportunity pass without at the very least clicking the "like" button. Make your social presence conversational, and monitored the comment threads created. 

Give Users Alternatives: Are you set up on UrbanSpoon, ePinions, or Yelp, or a relative review network? Take a moment to mine good reviews and brag about them on Twitter and Facebook. The promotion you give helps others know you're found elsewhere and may encourage them to click through and add their own experiences. Reward Good Mojo: If you notice a day or week where fan participation is quite active, show them you're listening. 

Offer a contest or deep discount, a freebie related to your business. When you've hit a point that people will check out your social profiles because they want to, and not necessarily because they're looking for incentive, giving them a nice surprise is one way to foster that good feeling. If you promise customers and clients the moon via social media, don't wait until the evening hours to make good. Nurturing your presence is a job meant for any hour of the day, nothing is simpler than clicking a response window to say thanks.

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