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Tips to get started on social media

Updated on November 6, 2015

Whether you are a small business that’s just launched itself, or a large conglomerate that has been active for several years now, having a credible presence on social media networks is very important. If you’re under the impression that you can get by without it, you’d be wrong.

Why? Simply because of the immense influence social media wields over hearts and minds these days. People spend so much time online – whether for work or for leisure – that they are bound to take in and be swayed by what happens in the digital world.

Therefore the question you should be asking yourself (assuming that you haven’t already done it), is how do you get started on social media? Is it simply about having a Facebook or Twitter account? Or does it entail a well thought out strategy? Well, this blog gives you five pointers on how to go about it:

A) Be present on all platforms: So to answer the previous question – no, it’s important for you to be present across as many social media platforms as possible. That includes Pinterest, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Instagram and any other platform that may be frequented by your potential customer. Does that sound unnecessary? It might at first, but not after when you consider the search engine optimisation (SEO) benefits for your website. Also, you never know where your next customer or follower will come from, so it’s best to maintain a healthy presence across all platforms.

B) Complete your profiles: You’ll be surprised at how much damage an incomplete profile can cause. It shows a lack of interest in finishing what you started, and more importantly, it shows that you’re not serious about promoting your business to the fullest extent. Inactive profiles cause similar damage. However, simply updating your profile for the sake of it is also not advisable. Try to add value for your visitor with each and every post, so that you know that you’re gradually building up a loyal following.

C) Allow users to share your content: Never downplay the importance of having social media share buttons on your web pages. Every time a user reads a good piece of content – whether it be a blog post, infographic, presentation, news, white papers, case studies, how-to-guides etc. – make it possible for him/her to instantly share your content with his/her friends and family. Think of it as a digital version of word of mouth promotion. It’s always a good thing, and the more you achieve it, the more your business gets promoted.

D) Interact with your followers: This one really goes without saying. However you must ensure that your responses have some personality (humour, well meaning sarcasm even, or a serious tone when required). Also, you need not respond to every comment you receive. The idea is to build a real, meaningful relationship with your users.

E) Ask for reviews: Social proof – or the practice of referring to what others have said before making a decision – is a powerful thing. Therefore you want to leverage this power and get as many positive reviews about your business as possible. If, however, the reviews aren’t forthcoming, go out and actively ask for reviews from satisfied customers. The more reviews you receive, the more authentic your business ends up looking, and the more your chances of grabbing even more customers.

Therefore keep in mind the above pointers. Social media platforms are an excellent way of building relationships with your customers and followers, so get your strategy right and start reaping in the benefits.

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