Social Networks for your Business: The Strategy Needed Behind Them

Nowadays, everybody wants to integrate social networks to their business strategy. And it is only logical, since almost every internet user is involved in social networks. You can read a little more on the specific statistical data in other articles such as this one and this other one.

But I won’t get too much into stats here. What I wanted to bring up in this post was the fact that creating a Facebook page or signing up for Twitter isn’t the only thing that needs to be done. You can’t just create an account and wait for it to start working on its own or, worse than that, post whatever comes to your mind now and then. After all, its mere existence is enough, right?

Of course not.

What do you have to do to make social networks WORK for you?

Do the words ‘business strategy’ sound familiar? Of course, you have to plan your social network presence! And you have to focus your strategy depending on the social network you will be using. If you want to be in Facebook, what will you post and why? Can it be the same as what you will post on Twitter? Maybe, but you can’t post the same stuff, you need to think about the length of your content and adequate it.

But that sounds a little random, right? Let’s stick to some key points on the subject to make it clearer:

  1. Think about your users – Of course, personas! I love how personas always seem to pop up in almost every subject, but they are just so useful! If you have an understanding of what your users are expecting of your presence in social networks, you’ll know where to focus your efforts.
  • Research those user’s expectations – That’s how you get your information together.
  • Create content for those users – You can search for articles related to what your business has to offer. If you are into web design, you can post links to articles from Smashing Magazine or recommend some related resources as a plus, apart from just talking about what’s going on with your company.
  • Choose a social network – Or many of them, if you like, but you need to have a reason to be there. And content to be there with.
  • Adequate the content to the social network – Again, it can’t go on Twitter the same as it goes on Facebook. Or is it posting it on Facebook and then tweeting a link to it the best idea? Are all of your users active on both? The second key point might have already solved that question.
  • Be constant - You can’t just post something one day and another thing in two months. You have to be constant. Define a frequency in which you will be posting and never miss it. You can loose followers by the second.
  • Don’t smother your users - Ok, be constant. Just don’t exagerate and post something every five minutes, ok?
  • Always provide feedback – Answer comments or direct mentions, it makes your users know that you care about their opinion. Be part of their conversation.

I know I mention Facebook and Twitter a lot, but I’m just giving rough examples. There’s a lot of other places you can make yourself present, like YouTube for example.

Well, do you think I’m missing something? Let me know! And don’t forget the main point of the whole scenario: Don’t take your presence on social networks lightly. Your users won’t.