It’s been said that social media is no longer a subset of the internet, it is the internet.
While you’ve probably been going at this social media marketing thing for a while now, you might be finding yourself disappointed by the lack of engagement you’re receiving.
Here are seven ways to spruce up your connection level on social media to take advantage of all it can offer:
1. Always Use Images
Social media marketing is built around visual storytelling (the key word there being “visual”).
By using visual components like video, infographics, or even just high-quality images, studies indicate your that content will receive up to 85% more interaction from your audience and is 35% more likely to be shared.
If you’re struggling to think of ways to use visual storytelling in your posts, here are a few ideas:
- Infographic: X Ways to Leave a Great Impression with Your Business Card (positive approach)
- Infographic: X Mistakes You’re Making When Ordering Print Online (negative approach)
- Stock Photo: Find a funny (humor works!) stock image to post with a cool customer service story. Maybe you completed a job lightning fast for a last-minute customer emergency. Find a superhero image and show off your mad skills. (Be sure to get the customer’s permission if using their name.)
- Video: Try a candid video. Caught your press operator doing the electric slide while jamming out and prepping for a job? Whip out your phone and snap a quick video. Or, consider this: cops get to have fun doing lip-sync videos, why can’t printers?
2. Ask Questions
Your audience can’t respond if they’re not being asked.
Consider ending a large percentage of your posts with questions to encourage people to leave a comment about their experience. Pulling from the superhero example above, you could post something like, “When was the last time you got to be a customer service superhero? Tell us about it below!”
Another option for questions is to play off the fun, childhood game of “Would You Rather?” Create posts with questions such as, “Would you rather get promotions through the mail or in your email inbox?” or “Do vertical or horizontal business cards make a stronger impression on you?” You can also pose these questions as fun poll questions through a poll plugin on Facebook. These are simple to set up and it allows your audience and you to see results in real time.
One last thing, your goal here is simply audience engagement. Your questions don’t have to be all print related. Ask about holiday plans, their favorite pumpkin spice flavored thing in the fall or another trending (neutral) topic.
3. Start a Hashtag Campaign
Social media visitors are looking for a connection with your brand, and hashtag campaigns allow your audience to participate with you in a digital movement of some kind.
To get started with a hashtag campaign, you need a concept. A great place to start is with statistics. Gathering statistics that are relevant to your buyers is an easy way to give them tiny nuggets of information and share the content online. These can be serious campaigns, or you can take a more humorous approach.
Here’s an idea to prime the pump:
For a more serious, fact-based campaign, use modern, high-quality stock images and overlay the image with a print statistic and your hashtag.
4. Sponsor a Giveaway
Contest giveaways are super popular on social media right now. Usually, these are three-step contests like this:
- Like our page.
- Share this post.
- Write a comment.
By having followers complete these steps, you’ll gain page followers and an enormous amount of traffic from people sharing your post to win. It’s an easy and efficient way to get your name and content in front of people and boost engagement.
Contests can come in all shapes and sizes. Recently, one of our customers, A-Link Printing and Marketing Solutions, did a Facebook contest having people guess the number of Jaci’s (the owner) favorite candies in a jar. Other ideas might include having a “Business Refresh” contest. If they like, share, and comment on what’s great about their business, they can win a free business refresh pack of letterhead, business cards, and envelopes. The possibilities are endless!
5. Embrace Live Video
Using live video on social media is a super fun and easy way to make that connection with your audience and get your content liked and shared.
If being in front of the camera freaks you out, don’t be in front of it, be behind it. Grab your phone and start recording! And, for all you printers out there that love to make the mistake of marketing with pictures of your press, this is the place where you can show off your equipment and what it does.
Give behind-the-scenes tours of your shop. Show off your production area or your design and finishing areas. If you’re doing offset printing, show us your plate-making process.
You may have grown immune to how cool your production area is, but your audience hasn’t. Let them in on the action with live video and watch your engagement level rise!
6. Start Guest Posting or Features
Guest posting allows you two incredibly valuable things: variety and connection.
By inviting a leading, reliable customer to be a contributor to your blog, you open the door to not only being able to connect with that customer’s customers, you also prove your worth by showing the success other companies have had with your print services.
How to start:
- Create a list of your best clients
- Email them to see if they’d be interested in contributing a blog
- Decide if it’s best for them to write it or if you’ll interview them and write it for them.
This isn’t as scary as it sounds. Creating a simple interview sheet with a few questions you can ask them directly (or even email to them) will give you the ability to write a feature on them and use quotes from the questions you sent. Start with one guest post a quarter, then move to once a month, and so on.
7. Understand Frequency
Social media moves fast, which means you need to understand when and how much to post.
It’s important to realize that what you posted this morning won’t be seen a few days from now or even later this afternoon. Create a content posting schedule so you can see what you’re posting and how often.
Some best practices:
- Record what you’re posting in a spreadsheet. This doesn’t need to be fancy — just a simple spreadsheet that lists at a glance when and where you posted. This will keep you from a feast or famine online presence.
- Start with posting once a day, but look to grow that number. Keep in mind that you can post the same content multiple times.
- The content doesn’t have to be your own. If you’ve found content that your audience with find valuable share it! As you continue to build your own unique content, you can supplement as you go.
- Start a bank of “Evergreen content” or content that will never go out of date. Then, you can pull from here when content is scarce or to build up what you already have.
Give it 10% More
It takes time to build up more engagement online, but don’t use that as an excuse.
Make a point to do one more thing than what you’re currently doing. Start small and continue to build on what you’ve learned. Be a little less fearful and try new things to see what works best for you and your company. Then, track what works and what doesn’t.
In the meantime, have your employees like and share your content. Call your relatives and close friends and have them follow your page. The more likes, shares, and clicks you have, the more quickly you’ll land at the top of the news feed and in front of the eyes of your audience.
“Social media is not just a spoke on the wheel of marketing.
It’s becoming the way entire bicycles are built.”
~ Ryan Lilly