I can’t claim to be an extremely early adapter of social media. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and now Google+ — does this stuff really work?
Well, if you are measuring results by the number of followers you have, the number of posts you make, and the number of comments you’ve received, I suppose you could say you are doing “something”? But are you actually selling more advertising because of this activity?
The answer, in my experience, is that business can develop — and we’ve seen it happen — if your social media presence is both strong and warm enough to build your reputation for both competence and “humanness”. In other words, you need to be able to show that you know your stuff — but you are not a corporate machine or “salesperson” spouting off repeated commercial lines and messages.
The ratios and models may vary, but I would suggest that your social media activities should be focused within these areas, in rough proportion to the levels indicated here. (In case you are wondering, the numbers here will add up to more than 100 per cent, because the themes overlap. In fact, the more themes you can combine in a single posting without forcing the issue, the better.)
- 7/10th is providing meaningful, useful and relevant information that shows your expertise and knowledge and is directly valuable to your audience.
- 1/4 to 1/3 “recognizing” others — especially clients, peers, and services which you enjoy and respect and which are relevant to your frame of reference. The reason here is that when you say good things about others, they feel good, and then often share the news about your sharing with still more. For example, I’m running a “Best Construction Blog” competition at constructionmarketingideas.com. There is no fee to enter and no fee to win — and every qualified entry receives a free positive introductory blog posting from me. As I do these, I notice the Tweets, Facebook posts and the like, all good for my own marketing.
- 1/8 to 1/4 is re-posting of news, experience, ideas and concepts of general interest but not specifically related to advertising and the media.
- 1/8 to 1/10th is “personal stuff,” stories about your life, family, experiences etc.
- 1/10th is self-promotional, maybe speaking event, announcement or a “selling” message.
If possible, I think you should use images in as many postings as possible, and where possible, link to videos (and if you can, make a few of your own.)
Google+ “Hangouts” add another dimension to the process, allowing live video conferences either on a regular schedule or spontaneously.
Note that that I advocate you hold your self promotional messages to about 1/10th of the total. You might get away with more promotional stuff, but be careful. The last thing you want to do is seem like a talking billboard.