10 Best Practices in Social Media Marketing
If you’re ready to stop the excuses and resolve to do better, these ten best practices in social media marketing will put you on the path to making social media work harder for your brand (read our Social Media Pocket Guide for additional insight).
1. Respond Promptly
Customers have high expectations for a quick response: 53 percent who expect a brand to respond to their tweet demand that response comes in less than an hour, according to a Lithium-commissioned study by Millward Brown. That figure skyrockets to 72 percent when they have complaints. Best-in-class response times for high-tech consumer, telecom, media and entertainment, and financial services industries is now 30 minutes, with some response time targets as fast as 90 seconds. Not surprisingly, customers are more likely to buy, and encourage their friends and families to buy from companies who provide them with a timely response.
2. Engage Your Organization
There is simply no better way to get expert assistance for social agents who often do not know the answer to a customer question than to appeal to the experts within your own organization. Don’t be afraid to tap into subject matter experts across all departments to assist with customer issues; this will ultimately drive higher customer satisfaction ratings.
3. Share the Love
When your customers experience satisfactory resolution to specific issues, and in particular those using social channels, share those conversations! Not just on your social channels, but internally as well. Building internal excitement and encouraging a collaborative approach to social participation can transform your employees into brand advocates.
4. Stop Posting and Praying
Are you still guessing when’s the best time to reach the most people on social? Stop guessing and start using data to tell you when to post instead. An auto-scheduler automatically picks the best time to publish, eliminating guesswork and increasing performance as well as engagement.
5. Talk with Your Customers
74 percent of younger people (Gen Z and Millennials) don’t like being targeted by brands on social media. Building trust with these generations involves a two-way dialogue, with sources such as blogs and online communities carrying far more credibility than traditional advertising. The best way to build trust is to talk WITH, not AT your customers. Take a Total Community approach to digital - build a network of trusted stakeholders around your brand.
6. Measure, Optimize, and Succeed
Social media managers can neither prove their value nor optimize their efforts without hard data. Utilize a social relationship tool that helps you both measure and optimize your social programs the same way companies have long measured and optimized search, email, and other proven digital channels.
7. Make Technology Your Best Friend
Enlist the help of tools to make your day-to-day job easier and more efficient, and eliminate or automate inefficient tasks where possible.
8. Measure Your Success
Challenge yourself to measure the social media impact to your business. This will give you executive-level support to secure budget for resources like technology tools and team personnel, and it will ultimately prove that you’re adding value.
9. Know More About Your Customers
Based on Gartner research, only one percent of companies who regularly tap into stores of social and legacy customer data actually use it to its full potential. When we truly know more about the wants, needs, and expectations of our customers – and can anticipate them in real-time – we can change the very nature of customer service and fundamentally reshape the ways in which customers view our brands and businesses.
10. HAVE FUN!
Finally, don’t forget that when you’re genuinely enjoying social conversations with your followers, your conversations will be more authentic and engaging.
For more information on best practices in social media marketing, read our Social Media Pocket Guide.