I recently was given the opportunity to attend the SkillPath Social Media Conference here in New Orleans on behalf of Mudbug Media. After the event I wrote the following blog on key takeaways from the day:
I recently attended the Social Media Conference hosted by SkillPath, to expand my expertise in the field and learn from others ‘ experiences. Throughout the day, discussions centered on social media strategy creation, platform management, content writing, measuring return on investment, and how to mange your company’s online reputation.
Attendees managed social media implementation for companies in many different industries, including automobile, restaurant, retail, and education. Due to the variety of industries and expertise levels represented, insightful conversations developed, shedding light on the evolving standards and practices in the social media realm. See more below on topics covered during the conference.
What do you want to achieve?
Before starting social media, it is important to determine your goals in order to develop a social media strategy. Your goals may include:
• Driving traffic to your website
• Generating leads
• Promoting your business
• Interacting with customers
Once goals have been established, a strategy can be developed to target your specific audience.
What your social media kit should include
Social media is not a single arena; it is a combination of many different platforms, with varying audiences. A social media kit includes different platforms including blogs, social conversation sites, social profiles, business profiles, search tools, social bookmarking sites, photo sharing sites, and video hosting sites. You may or may not include platforms from each category, as it will be very important to determine which platforms are right for your business. A kit will also include tools to manage the different social media platforms, including automating and mobile blogging tools.
Writing for social media
Content writing for social media is very different from writing content for your website, especially since you may have a text limit, such as a tweet which only allows 140 characters. A few key items to remember when writing for social media are:
• Always have a call to action
• Create attention grabbing headlines
• Use bulleted and numbered lists
• Use links and images whenever possible
Realistic required time commitment
While there are many tools available to help you manage multiple social media platforms, it is important to remember that social media never turns off. People will have the ability to comment, tweet, and post about your company 24/7, so a significant amount of time is required to not only post messages but also monitor responses. This allotment will vary greatly, depending on your company’s goals and the variety of platforms used.
Measuring return on investment
Social media is still a young media outlet, and consistent standards for measuring return on investment have not been established. The metrics for measuring the return on investment will correspond directly with your social media goals. Metrics may include increased site traffic, comments, inbound links, page views, or subscribers.
Managing your online reputation
One of the biggest concerns that companies have when considering social media, is how will they control their brand name. This is a valid concern and is one of the key components of a social media strategy. There is always the risk of negative comments, but the goal is to turn the negatives into a positive for your company. Handle the situation correctly and you many not only save a relationship with a customer, but you may also gain new customers. When managing brand reputation, it is important to consider:
• When should you respond?
• Who are you responding to? (Individual or the public)
• What tone should you use?
There are many different monitoring tools available that can help streamline brand management efforts. There are both free and subscription based tools that you can use. Tool selection will be based on your goals, number of platforms, and number of followers/mentions.
Check out more blogs social media strategy, check out Mudbug’s Blog au Roux!