A lot of great points arose from our session with these driven business leaders, and today we’d like to share our 5 favorite takeaways with you:
Respond (positively) to criticism
It’s tempting to just shut out the haters – but when you own a business, shutting out a hater means shutting out a customer. And their family. And their friends. And probably their friends of friends. This is what reputation management refers to – actively engaging in online comments and reviews to build customer trust. Responding positively to a bad customer review or comment and trying to “make things right” is more likely to regain trust and prompt the customer to return to a business. Other followers can see how the negative situation was handled and build trust with your business, too. With the proliferation of reviews and recommendations on social media, our peers are now viewed as authorities on a variety of topics. Make sure trashing your business isn’t one of those topics.
Sorry, but your social media followers actually can see through bullshit. If you’re constantly pushing your product or service in their face you’ll come off as “fake.” Try finding creative ways to introduce your product in everyday situations while giving them a glimpse into who you are as a person/group of people. Post about your mission first to show where your values lie. Talk to your social following like you would a friend. Otherwise, your followers will have difficulty relating to you or engaging with you – and will bump you out of their feeds fast.
Take advantage of free resources
We’re not saying these resources can take the place of the quality and depth of detail that an agency (wink, wink) can provide you, but photo editing apps like VSCO Cam can help you improve your image quality outside of Instagram while Canva or PicMonkey can help even the most “design-challenged” folks on a budget create eye-catching image layouts on the fly. License-free stock image sites like Unsplash are a must to protect yourself from copyright infringement – always give credit to the author of your images if you did not take them yourself and they are not clearly labeled as royalty- or license-free. Free post scheduling software baked into Facebook is super helpful for loading up your posts ahead of time – or you could use a platform like Hootsuite or Buffer to manage content on multiple accounts at once.
Variety is the spice of life
Have a sale, event or promotion going on that you really want to push? Great, post away! Using the same image/content and posting it every day of the week, however, isn’t going to attract the attention of your followers as much as it will bore them. Find different ways to frame the same event or promotion that will continually grab potential customers with exciting new announcements and eye-catching images. Even try mixing it up a little every time with the types of events and promotions you post so you and your brand don’t become “socially predictable.”
Posting on social media shouldn’t be something that keeps you awake at night. Talk about what comes naturally to you and your business in your daily routine and have fun with how you use photos/video to get people’s attention and share your unique experience. Really liking a popular meme? Go on and work it into a post – your followers may see you as more human. You don’t need a whole marketing team to do this – you just need to be you!