Nothing’s ever easy right?  Wrong.  There are ways to ease into social media without it taking up your entire business life.  Here at LCI, we create and implement social media programs for our clients every day, and yes, many of them are multi-faceted.  But if you just want to dip your toe into the social media pool, here are ten easy tips:
1.    If you’ve created a Facebook fan page, update it with something once a week at least. Use special offers, video, promotions, news.  A fan page that just sits there isn’t working for you.
2.    Create a corporate Twitter account and tweet daily.  Make sure that your corporate name is part of your handle.  For example, if you make widgets, your Twitter account should either be WidgetCo or a spokesperson, say WidgetBob.  Tweet each day about something new/interesting in the industry. 
3.    Don’t blog for blog’s sake.  If it’s pulling teeth for you to write an interesting post at least once a week…just don’t do it, or find someone else in your organization that has the talent/interest.  Remember, the most interesting blogs aren’t necessarily from the CEO.

4.    Just like brushing your teeth, check in twice a day.  Tweet in the morning and update FB at night and maybe blog in between.  But don’t be a slave to the output.  If your social media activities take more than 15 minutes a day, you’re actively marketing – which is great, but maybe you should palm that off to the marketing department right about now.
5.    Take thirty minutes to view the platforms and networks available to consolidate and build your social media activities (TweetDeck, Ning, Twitpic, etc.).  A good place to start is Mashable which has tons of great articles on getting started and how to pick tools.  It’s a lot easier to update in one spot than hop around cyberspace.
6.    Do not use a corporate social media tool to communicate about anything else except the corporation.  You may be quite passionate about a political hot-button, but this is not the place to talk about it. 
7.    Don’t forget that it’s a transparent world.  You know that political debate you’re having on your personal Facebook page?  Unless you’ve set your personal privacy settings, anyone can see it.  If you think that there could be repercussions to employers, colleagues or industry pundits knowing your stand – delete it.
8.    Don’t let someone else post for you.  Of course many CEO’s and spokespersons rely on agency or in-house talent to suggest topics or maybe even lay out a few bullet points…but no one should have access to any social media account that has your personal name on it.  The term hacking comes to mind…
9.    Fess up to connections.  It’s not just the media who should adhere to full disclosure rules.  If you have a vested interest in something you are blogging/tweeting/Facebooking about – state it upfront.  Honesty is still the best policy.
10.Use links, photos and video.  You know that saying, “a picture tells a thousand stories?”  And links are great – they show connections between you and others and encourage outside entities to link back to you.
Have your own thoughts? Send them along to me at:  david’

4 thoughts on “SOCIAL MEDIA MADE EASY?

  1. Brianne – I’m glad you spelled out social media in such a succinct and clear manner. . .it’s true, social media should always be a part of a strategic communications plan, not just a stand-alone item. And starting small and learning what works along the way is always the best policy. Cheers, David

  2. It’s always tough to make sure there is a line drawn between corporate and personal messaging.

  3. One of the first things I learned working in a past job at a recruiting firm was that a great way to market oneself is through social media. A great way to sabotoge oneself is through (badly censored) social media profiles! Since then, I’ve always made sure that when posting commentary or photos to my personal online profiles (and even when commenting on other people’s profiles), I am upholding a clear and concise image of what I would like others to see and know about me. That’s a great tool for marketing businesses through social media as well.

  4. Great ideas! Here are a few more:
    Define your company’s online personality and implement it across all social
    media. People want to connect with people, not companies – there needs to be
    a face to the company. If your company were a person how would it act and
    communicate with people?
    Also I think companies should use Twitter to communicate beyond the
    corporation. This is one of the things that humanizes the person behind the
    handle and helps people make a connection. For example: if you are an agency
    that works with start-ups, why not highlight all types of innovation?
    Monitor what is being said about your industry on Twitter and join the
    conversation as appropriate. Balance Tweets, Retweets and @messages.
    Give credit to cool, innovative, or thought provoking ideas, even if coined
    by someone else (RT, via @)

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