A lot of businesses and individuals use social media to promote their endeavors. However, only some of these have a truly effective social media presence. Great social media presence is more than showing up; it’s the art of effectively presenting your brand on social media platforms. It’s using best practices to establish an identity that people will recognize and be drawn to.
This kind of presence doesn’t just automatically happen for anyone who opens a social media account and starts posting. There are specific steps you must take to make yourself known and establish your credibility. Those who do these things create an effective social media presence. They build long-term relationships with their target audience and experience the benefits of growing their brand.
Here are seven tips for establishing your social media presence.
Know Your Audience
Few brands are of interest to everyone. It’s important to understand the audience you’re trying to reach. For starters, it will tell you which social media platforms you want to focus on. You’re not going to reach most millennials with Facebook or retirees with TikTok.
Your target audience will also guide your brand voice and the type of content you publish. You need to understand what these folks read, what their interests are and what problems you can help them solve.
A good way to start is by creating the personas of two or three typical audience members: their age, their occupation, their hobbies, and you can use a persona creator tool to help you achieve that. Then put yourself in the shoes of these people and ask yourself what would interest them. What questions are they looking to answer? What platforms do they use, and what posts would make them take a second look?
Set Goals And Measure Against Them
How will you know if and when you’ve established a social media presence? You won’t, unless you’ve defined what that means and can measure whether you’ve achieved it.
The best business goals are described by the acronym SMART. They’re specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. It’s not helpful merely to say, “I’m going to get a lot more followers.”
A better goal would be, “We’ll increase our followers on Twitter by 50 percent over the next six months,” or “A year from now, we will have 100 daily visitors at our website who clicked through from social media.” Both of those matter, are aggressive without being impossible and, six months or a year from now, you can measure whether you’ve reached them.
Invest In Your Branding
What’s going to distinguish you from all the other voices on social media these days? How is your target audience going to remember you instead of the people and businesses you’re competing with? The answer lies in branding.
Branding isn’t a vague concept. It consists of specific elements that become uniquely associated with a company. When you see the swoosh, you immediately think of Nike. When you hear, “What’s in your wallet?” your mind goes at once to Capital One. Branding isn’t just for big business. Corner coffee shops and online entrepreneurs can build awareness and gain customers with branding.
The key element of branding is the logo: the Nike swoosh, the Amazon smile, the Apple with a bite missing. The good news is, you don’t need a graphic artist to design one. It might seem complicated at first, but there are many online tools that enable you to inexpensively design a unique logo. For example, if you choose to go with a logo generator, you simply need to provide a name, a business description, and some visual preferences, and in minutes you’ll have some samples you can select, customize and download. You can go over the process several times to get multiple results and explore different designs, and this way create a logo that will be the best fit for you.
Other important branding elements are company colors, taglines, typography and the type of shapes and images you use. Use these consistently not only on posts but also on websites, email and even paper correspondence.
Emphasize The Visual
The old say that a picture is worth a thousand has never been more true than on social media. Visual images draw eyeballs, whether it’s photos, graphics or videos. Just think of sites such as Instagram, Pinterest and TikTok that consist almost entirely of images, often with live audio.
Even on text-friendly media such as Facebook and Twitter, it’s images that get people to stop scrolling and take a further look. No matter what kind of business you’re in or what service you’re promoting, there are plenty of pictures and videos you can post online, and relevant guides to help you create great visual content for your channel.
Think of photos of your product, videos of you providing your service, pictures of customers and images of events you’ve participated in. If you want to present numbers, they’re more likely to be noticed and understood if you display a graph or a pie chart.
No matter what your product or service, what you’re really selling is yourself. If people believe in you, they’ll believe what you’re telling them. You need to be authentic, and you need to be credible.
You can establish authenticity and credibility by letting people know who you are. An attractive image or headshot of you and your associates attaches a human face to your message. It helps you approach your audience as a friend. Details about your company’s background and history also encourage the target audience to identify with you.
Your content has to be accurate. If you’re not sure about something, do your research. If you can present numbers with links to reliable sources, it shows that you are someone who takes accuracy seriously. Also, if you post frequently asked questions with their answers, you can establish yourself as a go-to source for information in your field.
If your account is silent for long periods, people will tend to forget about you and will be less likely to pick you up again when you return. It’s important to post on each platform at least every few days with some fresh content. Some entrepreneurs and influencers use a social media calendar, to schedule what content they’re going to post and when and where they plan to post it.
Content doesn’t always have to be totally original. You can present something with a new twist, add a new image or republish a link but talk about it in a different way.
Another important aspect of consistency is replying regularly to questions and comments on your posts. It’s one of the best ways to foster active engagement with your audience.
Post With Purpose
Every post should be intended to accomplish something. The purpose could be to get the reader to take some type of action, such as subscribe to an email, click through to a website, download a podcast or even buy a product.
However, not every post needs to be action-oriented in this way. In fact, it’s best if some posts are merely informative and not “salesy.” Sometimes your purpose is to entertain, inform, establish credibility and keep your brand in front of your audience.
With each post, ask yourself two questions. First, what to I want this post to accomplish? Second, how does this post align with my brand? Posts should include your logo and, where possible, your colors, typography and tagline.
Posts should have at least some connection to your brand. It can be a loose one, but avoid jokes and amusing stories unless they tie back to your brand in some way.
Standing Out From The Social Media Crowd
It may seem that everybody is trying to make a stand on social media these days, but not everyone is going about it effectively. If you approach your social media presence seriously and methodically, you’ll have a “leg up” on a large portion of the would-be influencers.
The playing field is crowded, but it’s still possible to distinguish yourself from the competition. Use some of these tips to establish a social media presence that people will recognize and respond to.
If you are interested in even more social media-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.