Initiation and strategy for companies and SMEs in Social Media
A strategy in Social Networks usually integrates more than one to generate the desired impact. The most common combination for its strength, is that of Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn. But depending on the type of business, the market and the objectives you seek to achieve, you can have many more or less.
- The content you publish
- The context in which you publish it (the social network)
- The connection you achieve with your followers or fans
- The community that you are formed
The constancy of carrying out this virtuous circle is the one that at the end of the day, with hard work and patience, will lead you to achieve your goals.
Now, once at this point, many companies realize the amount of time they have to invest in social networks to work and are already aware of the work involved, so they begin to wonder how I should manage my networks ? How can I make your management easier?
When we have the necessary budget, it is definitely best to have a person responsible for them, either within your company or hire a CM (Community Manager). But the reality of an infinity of companies is that they must do it themselves, because they do not have the budget or the personnel for this work. So, in addition to preparing, they must face the extra work load.
What does the management of social networks in a company mean? It implies the use of tools to optimize and facilitate certain actions. Basically they need tools to:
- Publish and schedule updates on all the social networks they are working on.
- Follow and organize the updates of your contacts, and the conversations that take place in the different areas of online participation.
- Shorten the URL addresses of the content you want to publish.
- Measure and obtain statistics of their participation in social networks, as well as the interaction generated.
- Search conversations, interests and users in social networks.
- Monitor your brand and the competition.
- Make reports of their participation in social networks.
- Perform, analyze or monitor specific events.
Here I want to tell you some tips that can help you manage your social networks and some concepts that you should not fail to take into account.
The contents should not be the same in all social networks. Each of them has a different personality and is aimed at a market with certain characteristics, for example: if your market is housewives, you will find some on Twitter that like to read interesting information, others on Facebook that like to look at photographs and stay a day with popular news, others you can find on YouTube looking for videos of topics that interest them, the latter are the most visual. Thus, although the segment is the same some will be visual, other intellectual and other social, etc. You must prepare the content for each social network in a different way, you can say the same, but never in the same way.
Get on Social Media Tools. As I said above, there are different tools that can facilitate management, one of the most important is the platform to visualize your networks and their followers in one place. The ones I recommend you try (free) are HootSuite (my favorite), TweetDeck, CoTweet, DandyID, TweetAdder, among others.
Beware of Publications Programming. It is very productive to use tools to establish your publications on different networks daily, but beware of exaggerating, no tool replaces you, and what is important in the RS is the “connection”. So what I advise is the following …
- Twitter Program only links to your blog or other sites with relevant information. No more than 10 tweets scheduled per day. You can also schedule Direct Messages of welcome to your new followers, but take care that they are not promotional, that they are really welcome. I do not recommend you schedule RT’so Mentions. (TweetAdder / HootSuite)
- Fan Page (Facebook). The scheduled updates are not very well seen on Facebook, if you do, they should be very impactful (HootSuite). What I recommend is rather to program them from my Facebook.
- LinkedIn and YouTube. Do not schedule
- RSS You can program that you are automatically publishing in your RS information or post that publish Blogs or Electronic Newspapers.
Interaction is the most important thing. Answering the questions and considering the opinions of your followers is key when generating commitment and recognition in each one of them. Do not forget to talk with them daily. Several times a day.
Select your audience well and what to do with it. You must select who to answer, whom to recommend, who to share and whom to follow, otherwise you will lose coherence and consistency with your audience.
Times of publication. Publish at different times per day so you can cover more audience, not everyone enters the RS at the same time of day. Some advices:
- Twitter Minimum of 5 to 8 daily tweets at morning, mid-day, afternoon and evening intervals (8 am to 9 pm)
- Fan Page (Facebook). Minimum 2 updates per day, ideal times in general 12 pm and 6 pm The content that generates the most connection are images and video.
- YouTube. Minimum one video per week.
- LinkedIn Update your status once a day. Enter the question and answer section once a day. Actively participates minimally in a forum.
Make sure you connect. Enter at least 3 times a day to all your networks, through a management platform (HootSuite) and talk to your followers: 9 am / 12 pm / 6 pm / maybe 9 pm Read what they write, also share its content and opinions about it. Dedicate 10 minutes in each session, that is, spend at least 30 minutes a day making connections with your followers. If you do not have a lot of time, it is better that you work with a single network than you have several, but neglected.
Take advantage of your content. You can use the same content differently, imagine you want to comment on the launch of a new product: write a post on your blog and tweet the link, but also make a video with that text and upload it to YouTube, you can also make a presentation of the new product’s power point and upload it to SlideShare. Be creative with your content.
Centralize the input information. Make lists with keywords on Twitter and Facebook to monitor all the time mentions to your brand. Take those lists to your management platform (HootSuite) it will be easier to follow up on what is said and be able to answer immediately.
Customer service. If your Social Network is a customer service channel, you should be very aware of your questions or comments. You must have a mobile version of the RS in which you are to trigger alarms every time they mention you. Answer as fast as you can, on Twitter no more than 15 min. and on Facebook no more than 1 hr.
User Manual. No matter how small your company is, it is always good to have a Manual on how to behave in Social Networks before entering them, including:
- Benefits of the product to be highlighted
- Form in which will be spoken (of you, you, 1st or 3rd person)
- Brand personality in RS (serious, formal, friendly, open, fun, etc.)
- Social Networks in which you will participate and why
- Objective that is sought to achieve in each RS and its measurement indicators
- Calendar of publications
- Contents that are allowed to publish
- Formats in which the contents must be shared (video, photo, post, etc.)
- Things that are forbidden to publish by the philosophy and image of the company
- How to handle negative comments or aggressions
As always, I hope that this brief information will be useful for you. I would love to have your comments and know your opinion.