Our ace intern and social media guru, Hannah Pace has another great blog on social networking for professionals. Thank you again, Hannah.
It’s Not All About You
Yes, social media is a platform that provides free marketing. Is that a reason to make its sole use self-promotion? Not if you want your venture into the digital realm to be successful. Users log on to their accounts to build relationships, both social and professional. The best way to gain (and keep) followers is to do the same. Make posts interactive by asking questions, and be sure to reply to any comments. For instance, Bankers Advocate’s goal in the use of social media is to be 90% education/information and only 10% commercial. We believe this minimizes “opt outs.” If you’re not building personal connections, your digital presence will be ineffective.
Choose a Direction and Follow It
Beware of wearing too many hats while developing your online persona. In order to build credibility, maintain a single focus – even if you are an expert in multiple topics. If you are a realtor, stick to realty. This is the best way to prevent your brand from becoming diluted. Note: Banker’s Advocate offers many services, so I understand the struggle to succinctly convey multiple levels of expertise. Creating a solution for a multifaceted business requires a critical look at your services and the needs of your online audience. This takes time. Until a plan is developed, keep your audience engaged and begin to establish online relationships.
No One Likes A Negative Nancy
There is nothing like a news-feed full of negative posts to drive a follower mad. Never, I repeat never, express your complaints and frustrations through social media. It is a sure-fire way to lose an audience. Demonstrating a positive and open attitude is attractive to everyone.
Professional Isn’t Bland
While it is important to watch your words, don’t let your caution block your personality. Again, users log on to social media accounts to build relationships. You can remain professional without being institutional. Without showing who you are, you cannot cultivate a relationship. Without a relationship, you have no trust. Without trust, you will have no audience.