Social Media Strategies for Small Business


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This is a great primer on social media strategies for your business. Please visit for more detailed information.

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Social Media Strategies for Small Business

  1. 1. Social MediaStrategies forSmall Businesses Thomas DiSanto Learn what consumers, who “Like” your brand really want, create the most engaging posts and keep them coming back for more. Drive (401) 400-0450
  2. 2. Contents:Chapter 1: What Consumers Who “Like”Your Brand Really WantChapter 2: How to Keep Your Fans &Followers Coming Back for More!Chapter 3: Strategies for Creating the MostEngaging Facebook Posts 1|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  3. 3. What Consumers Who “Like” Your BrandReally WantAccording to a survey conducted by social media marketing agency Cone Inc, free products orservices, coupons and discounts continue to be the best way to build fans and followers and keepthem engaged. Consumers who “Like” or “Follow” an online brand expect to receivepromotional incentives, but are also looking for brands to help “solve their problems” as well asacknowledge their important feedback.What are US Social Media Users Looking for When Engaging with Companies/BrandsOnline?It is also important to consider what Fans and Followers aren‟t looking for. When social mediausers were asked why they stopped following an online brand respondents overwhelming said:The brand sent out too many messages (spammy) and/or acted in an irresponsible manner. Themajority of respondents also complained about the content being irrelevant. 2|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  4. 4. Top Reasons Why US Social Media Users Stop Following Companies/Brands Online 2010:These findings further confirmed another recent study conducted by DDB Worldwide andOpinionway Research of Facebook brand fans worldwide. 3|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  5. 5. In the preceding study, the top reason for unsubscribing was a „lack of‟ or „losing interest‟ in thebrand, followed closely by complaints about being frequently bombarded with information andcontent. Both studies suggest that having too much content, the wrong kind of content, andcommunicating too frequently will surely drive consumers away.While brands who publish too infrequently seem problematic for some fans, it is not necessarilya mitigating factor when fans chose to unsubscribe from a page. With the same token, if effortsare made to improve content and enhance engagement, fans and followers will surely still bethere to see it. It’s a fine line isn’t it? 4|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  6. 6. How to Keep Your Fans & Followers ComingBack for More!ComBlu has just released their annual “State of Online Branded Communities” report. Buriedinside the report were some really great nuggets of information about what is working for brandson the cutting edge of social media engagement.Though the report is centered on “Branded” online communities as opposed to other socialnetworking venues such as Facebook and Twitter, there were some formalized „best practices‟that can easily apply to all.Here is a mash-up of some of the key components from that report and my own suggestions forkeeping social followers engaged.Create a profile for a designated online social „manager‟. 50% of online branded socialcommunities/pages do not have an active „manager‟. There is no one to represent the face of thebrand. This is a missed opportunity to „humanize‟ your brand and/or products and services.People are more considerate when they know they‟re communicating with a „real‟ person and notthe austere „corporate‟ image. Give your online brand manger a face!Send Welcome message to all of your new followers! Make them feel appreciated and alsoorientate them to the key benefits of your community/page/brand. This will ensure a return visit.Only 50% of online communities/pages do this.Less than 20% have a brand advocates program. “Micro-fame” is a one of the key drivers behindsustained participation. Recognizing „key influencers‟ is essential as these deeply engagedmembers represent the voice of the customer and possess a deep affinity for the brand. „KeyInfluencers‟ will actively recruit others, accelerate engagement and are typically prolificcontributors. Recognize and reward these important brand advocates!Fewer than 40 percent of communities have a rewards and recognition program. Why not rewardfollowers for their participation, whether it‟s a $5 gift card to Starbucks or new Porsche 911GT3. This can be formalized into a points system, or it could be random. It doesn‟t even have tobe monetary. Establish a points system with cool badges. We can all be micro-famous! Think“Foursquare”. For businesses who do not offer Foursquare incentives other than being the“Mayor” or getting a cool badge…what real value is there in Foursquare check-ins?About 60% of brands have integrated the Facebook “Like” button as well as a “share” button thatallows users to more easily promote your content to their friends. This helps attract newmembers as well as syndicates your rich content throughout the web. 5|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  7. 7. Consistency matters! Sporadic posts and updates do not encourage other members to contribute.Make time to engage with your Fans and Followers on a regular basis. Answer all inquiries. The“Face” of your social presence must be accessible and approachable for maximum engagement.Put the primary focus on your members. Inevitably, the conversation must always come back tothe customer and the customer experience. People don‟t care about products and services;ultimately, they care about themselves and their problems and concerns. Keep this in mindbefore you trumpet the virtues of your newest product release.Polling your Fans and Followers can yield greater engagement if it is relevant to your brand, or ifit just plain strikes a chord. One of the best off-topic strings I ever saw was post that asked “Didyour parent‟s make you take piano lessons and did they make you happier?” Be a conversationstarter!Witty comments on the news of the day will always get a little attention, as long as the viewpointit might express will appeal to your members. Topical is fine, as long as it does not offend oralienate anyone.Along the same line as topical, expressing some good vibrations is a wonder to behold, and willhave members “liking” your comment almost instantly. So, say something positive! The sun isshining, the birds are chirping, the children are singing! Try and inject a little positivity ineverything you do and say! Your warmth will attract and encourage others.Comment on the status of others! Show your support and commitment to engaging with them. Itcan be as simple as: “Hey! Thanks for posting! That was really cool!” Connect with otherHUMAN beings and show your eagerness to be a part of the conversation.Sincere expressions of support for a worthy charitable cause will always be viewed as a positive.Support a worthy cause, not because it makes you look good, but because it‟s the right thing todo. Good things come back to you! (If you‟re looking for a great cause, please check most influential content you have in your arsenal is the reviews and ratings from realcustomers. It is perfectly acceptable for you to post excerpts and links to customer reviews, asthe vast majority of customers want to hear about the experiences of others.Share Your Valuable Expertise: Answer questions, write content laden articles. You are theexpert and the authority! Take it to a new level by creating pod casts and “How To” videos. Begenerous with your knowledge and you will find that others are most willing to reciprocate.Turn your employees into ROCK STARS! Your employees are the greatest asset you have! Talkabout why and how they‟re great at their jobs! Talk about what it is that they do. Post pictures ofemployees, your office building, your equipment, the view from the roof of your building. Put aface and place in your posts! 6|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  8. 8. Promote your presence in social media. Include it in your advertising. Encourage others to „joinyou on Facebook‟. Demonstrate and emphasize the diverse ways in which consumers canconnect with your brand.Take it offline! Only 20% of brands do this. Throw a party for your fans & followers, invite themto kibitz and have a good time. Make yourself accessible, have face to face conversations withyour customers, fans and followers. Personal relationships are what make a difference! This willgrow your reputation and your business in ways that you could have never anticipated! This istruly an opportunity to create lifelong brand evangelists!3 Very Important Key Take-Aways: 1. Demonstrate to members the ways in which they can participate; 2. Reward them when they do participate; 3. Showcase the accomplishments of high-performing members;“Y’all come back now, ya’ hear?” 7|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM
  9. 9. Strategies for Creating the Most EngagingFacebook PostsKudos to Buddy Media for their insightful new report based on analysis conducted among asample size of 200 clients who are using the Buddy Media Platform to post on Facebook. Theanalysis represents data from some of the world‟s largest brands crossing many industriesincluding entertainment, media, retail, automotive, business & finance, fashion, sports, travel &hospitality, food & beverage, and health-care & beauty.Here are a few crucial findings: Posts 80 characters or less in length have 27% higher engagement rates; Engagement rates are 3 times higher for posts that used a „full length‟ URL; Brands that posted outside of business hours had 20% higher engagement rates; Engagement rates on Thursday and Friday are 18% higher than any other day of the week; Posts that end with a question have a 15% higher engagement rate;Don‟t ask “why”! “Why” questions had the lowest number of „Likes‟ and „Comments‟ as theyare perceived as intrusive and challenging. The 5 interrogative keywords that drove the highestengagement were: “Where”, “When”, “Would”, “Should”, and “How”.Fans follow simple instructions well; asking them to „Like‟ a post is the easiest. If you wantusers to take action, you must tell them. Asking fans outright to “Like”, “Post”, “Take”,“Submit” or “Watch” something will drive the greatest level of engagement. Fans will listen andrespond.Fans are happy to engage with “Events” and “Winning” offers. Stick with this type of „softer‟language, as opposed to more direct language such as “contest” or “promotion”. The 5 bestperforming keywords for consumer engagement were: “Event”, “Winner”, “Offer”, “New”,and “Win”. Keywords such as „save‟, „free shipping‟ and „exclusive‟ scored the absolute lowest. THANK YOU! 8|Page By Thomas DiSanto www.driveCUSTOMERS.COM