There’s no doubt social media is a must for any business hoping to stay in the loop. Unfortunately, all that posting, tweeting and liking can be a real time suck. Below are five social media marketing tips and tricks to help you save time while increasing the effectiveness of each and every social media interaction.
1. Don’t Forget the Calls-to-Action
You likely include calls-to-action in your regular web content, encouraging readers to call, email or complete a “contact us” form. Social media posts similarly benefit from reader prompts. Morgan Greco, the director of social media and fan engagement for A&E Television recommends using words like “share,” “reply,” “retweet” and “comment” to encourage fans to join the conversation, according to Offerpop. The more followers who engage with your content, the more the message spreads across various platforms.
2. Automate Posts
Automate as much of your social media marketing work as possible with the use of syndication services like HootSuite. This service allows you to manage Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter and more from a single dashboard. Pre-scheduled posts make it easy and efficient to keep up on social media posting without having to set aside time each day to share links to your latest content. Word of caution – don’t become so reliant on automation that you forget about the social aspect of social media. Human interaction is a valuable asset in the social realm.
3. Be Less Wordy and More Visual
A picture is worth a thousand words – and to be honest, few web readers will slog through a thousand-word blog post. Make your web content extra sharable by keeping the word count in check. Aim for 500 or so words for articles and 300 to 500 words for blogs and FAQs. Readers will appreciate the succinct approach.
What to do with all that “extra space” once you cut out the extraneous text? Drop in eye-catching, relevant images. This provides options for thumbnail images when sharing a post on Facebook, Google+ or Twitter (provided you use Twitter Cards). This may seem like adding an extra step to the process, but consider this – Natasha Khan, the director of social media for shoe retailer JustFab, says incorporating an engaging image with a Facebook status can strengthen its viral appeal by 125 percent, according to Offerpop.
4. Be Selective About the Services You Use
Having a hand in a dozen or more social media platforms can quickly eat up hours of the day. Decide which platforms are most effective for your business and focus your energies there. Naturally, Facebook, Google+ and Twitter are among the biggies, but you may find LinkedIn, Pinterest or any number of services to work best for your audience. The key is to zero in on the most effective and cut loose any services with a poor ROI.
5. Use Hashtags (Wisely)
Hashtags allow users to quickly find content – specifically your content – related to a particular topic. Capitalize on trending topics and key search terms by thoughtfully using hashtags in your Twitter, Facebook and Instagram posts.
Limit the use of hashtagged terms to only the most relevant and specific words. For instance, here’s a sample of a good attorney Twitter update: “Proposed Maryland #MedicalMalpractice law limits pay-outs to $100,000. #SenateBill678.” Here is an example of hashtag overload: “#New #laws would #punish #drivers for speeding in #school zones. #Texas #attorney.”