USING SOCIAL MEDIA EFFECTIVELY

Using social media in a business setting isn’t a new concept, yet there are still a number of companies that simply don’t see any value in it. To some, these websites might not seem like anything more than a place to share selfies, and pointless daily updates, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Every minute, there are meaningful conversations happening on social media, and to willingly exclude yourself from this expansive atmosphere is a disservice to your company. Twitter, Facebook, and other social sites are important to use, not only because there are tangible benefits to them, but because it also signals that you’re active in the social marketplace. If you, or your company is ready to join the digital world, make sure you understand the 5 guidelines for using social media effectively before jumping in headfirst.

Getting started with a brand new social media account is probably the hardest part of the entire process. Nobody wants to send their tweets to four followers, as few, if any, will see your message, and you’re not likely going to get any engagement. Not only will the content be completely missed out on, but some might even view it as embarrassing.

For every social media account in history, they’ve started off with zero followers, no subscribers, and no likes. It takes time to build a following; and while it will likely be tedious and time consuming, it’s undoubtedly worthwhile. It’s like the ancient Chinese proverb, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” Except, in our case, it’s a little less profound.

The best time to start a social media account was five years ago. The second best time is now. During the process of growing your user base, there’s one vitally important point to keep in mind: Don’t buy followers. It might help your vanity by being able to point to a follower count of 10,000, but if none of them interact with you, or care about your product, then what’s the point? It’s a waste of money, and we’re constantly seeing crackdowns on fake & bought accounts. It won’t help you grow your user base, and a likely scenario is that all your bought followers will eventually be purged, causing you to start all over again.

According to Kissmetrics, content with images gets 94% more views than those without. While that’s true, we need to clarify exactly what that means. It’s not enough to just attach a photo to a tweet, and sit back and watch it flourish. The image needs to be relevant to what your message is about.

If you see a Tweet with the text “Here’s how you can take advantage of social media” with a photo of a bushel of apples, chances are, you’re not going to click on that link.

However, finding a photo that perfectly matches your message is easier said than done. With Pixabay, Kaboompics, and other high quality image sites, it’s likely that you can find something that’s at the very least tangentially related to your topic. Of course, there are paid alternatives which will open up a treasure trove of images, but if you’re stuck under a tight budget, or none at all, you’re left without an easy solution. Fortunately, there are other alternatives.

If you find yourself having trouble nailing down that perfect image, why not try creating it? While that might sound like a tall task, with Canva, a site that provides you with easy and intuitive tools to design your own images, it’s simple. They have numerous pre-designed layout options, and thousands of photos, grids, frames, shapes, illustrations, icons, and charts for you to incorporate into your design. Long story short. Don’t settle for a photo that’s somewhat related to your topic. Create one that connects to your message.

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