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The Ultimate Guide to Building Your Company’s Social Media Presence

 

Sales and Marketing
We all know that social media is a powerhouse whether you’re a Tweeter, Facebooker, Instagrammer or LinkedIn user looking to get noticed. You can be part of the selfie-loving folk that want to get ‘likes’ or a business that wants to get ‘likes’ because both inevitably have the same end result – interest. With 1.55 billion active users on Facebook and over 320 million on Twitter, your business can’t afford to miss out. So how do you utilise social media? We’ve put together the top 7 tips to build your company’s social media presence and get your organisation on the way to achieving greatness in the aptly dubbed Twittersphere (and all the other ‘pheres’ out there).

Research and Planning

Like with any marketing project, you need to do your research and know your scope. Start off with listing down all the ‘big’ companies that are in your industry. For example, if you’re in technology, you’d look at Apple, Google and other big-time companies. There are 4 key things to take note of when doing this:
  • How does their social media page look i.e colourful, creative or simple
  • What type of content do they post i.e blogs/statistics/quotes
  • How regularly do they post i.e 3 times a day, 3 times a week etc
  • What their engagement is like i.e how many Tweets are they sending to other people, how many retweets/likes/shares do their posts receive
Next, write down all of your competitors, find their social media handles and do the same. Why? Because you can see how many followers they have, how they’ve marketed their product and fundamentally, what you need to do differently in order to attract more prospects and more followers.

Understanding Your Brand

The most important thing to remember before diving headfirst into the social media whirlpool is exactly what your brand stands for. Are you a fun, innovative company that thrives on company Giphs or a strictly professional organisation that prefers Philosophical quotes? Be clear on this as your brand is your biggest marketing tool; much like each of us, it is unique. Once you have a clear understanding of your values and your brand’s voice, tone and messaging, you’ll understand the type of social media accounts that you should be having. You’ll recognise what works for your organisation and how you want your potential prospects to see you. Take Ebsta as an example. Our values are:
  • Be transparent
  • Go beyond what is asked
  • Be caring and considerate
  • Constantly improve
Brief Description of us: We are professionals that work hard and know how to have a good time. We work long hours but enjoy spending time outside of work playing pub quizzes and doing karaoke. What type of Twitter account do you expect us to have? Our Twitter mixes the fun with the high-end. We want to prove to people that we know what we’re doing and that we have built products that can revolutionise their Salesforce. However, we also want to show that we’re a great company to work for and that we can be trusted. Think Monorover videos and meme’s merged with data quality blog posts and Salesforce usage reports. This was a huge hit:

Understanding the Different Platforms

You may look at all the social media platforms and think that they all do the same thing so you should only bother with one of them. This is a huge mistake. Here at Ebsta, we differentiate between the 4 social media platforms we use like this: Twitter: Light professional
  • Publicise blogs, webinars, events etc
  • Occasional company photo
  • Occasional video/Gif
  • Interaction with customers
  • Ability to see ‘trends’ and join the discussion
LinkedIn: Professional
  • Publicise high-end content
  • Publicise webinars
  • Build our C-level following
Facebook: Brand Awareness
  • Company photos
  • Interactive company games I.e online quiz
  • Company ‘shout outs’
  • Interaction with customers
  • Perfect for reviews
Instagram: Brand Awareness
  • Show off the team
  • Generate awareness of events
  • Short video clips
  • Attract an audience we might not have on other platforms
Understanding what each of the platform’s purpose is will help you determine if you need them and if so, what you will put on them. There’s no point wasting valuable time posting a hilarious company video on LinkedIn when it would be better suited to Twitter or Facebook. Like any good Marketer should, get to know your audience and determine their likes, their challenges and their requirements and go full speed ahead with this information.

Engagement

Your organisation’s social media accounts aren’t there just there to promote your content or create a buzz around your culture – it’s an important place to interact with your prospects and customers. Why? Because everyone will see how good your customer service is which can be a huge deciding factor when a prospect is deciding on whether to choose you over a competitor. Get involved with the conversation When your customers post to their social media accounts, reply and generate a conversation. You can be as playful as you like and might even urge others to get involved. The more you engage with your customers, the more likely you are to build a successful business relationship with them that can lead to renewals, testimonials, partnerships and case studies. First Port of Call For many customers, social media is their first port of call when they have a query or an issue. Whether it’s a private message on Facebook or a Tweet on Twitter, you want to show that your response is quick, effective and prove that you care about the customer. Remember, customer engagement is key to your customer retention strategy so plan, create and get it right!

Building Your Network

If you was at a networking event, you would liaise with as many people as you could and pick up their business cards along the way. Social media is a virtual networking experience where you can connect with people and build long-lasting relationships. How do you get followers? Gaining followers can be tough but there are ways to build your network without having to go above and beyond. Simple things like adding your social media handles to your website and to your email signatures can generate ‘followers’ or ‘likes’ for your pages. If you want to go a little bit further, you can add ‘click to Tweet’, for example, on your blog posts so people can easily Tweet the links without hassle and then tend to follow. If you send out monthly newsletters or marketing campaigns, be sure to add your social media handles to the bottom; you’re bound to get some followers from the thousands of people you send it out to! Make the Effort Although it may sound time-consuming, try to follow all of your customers and people that could be interested in what you have to offer. For example, we follow our customers and Salesforce Admins/MVP’s that might find our posts valuable and therefore will be enticed to go to our website.

Maintaining Your Presence

Taking the time to go through each of these steps to create budding social media accounts will prove invaluable to your company. You’ll have people popping up, retweeting you, leaving you reviews and ultimately, talking about you. However, there’s one vital thing that you have to do to ensure you haven’t wasted your time – maintain them. Remember to:
  • Post regular content that is engaging and appropriate
  • Answer everyone that messages you
  • Get involved in conversations
  • Update your pages every now and again
  • Keep building your network
Otherwise you will slowly start to lose the following you have gained and will be left with a huge uphill battle from there.

Using Social Media Tools

When you’re up and running, you might find that it’s difficult to maintain multiple accounts all at the same time. This is the perfect opportunity to implement tools like Sprout Social or Hootsuite to do all the hard work for you. These Social Management tools allow you to connect multiple accounts and schedule posts (which is helpful if you want posts to go out Pacific time and you’re running on GMT) so you don’t have to stop and start throughout your workday. It’s also hugely valuable to see your social media journey with the reports that these tools offer. See your engagement levels and your increase in followers or which content and hashtags performed the best so you can keep improving. You can also tailor your posts to your audience with Sprout Social showing you your Audience Demographics. See this fictional example: Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 17.23.39 They even allow you to export the reports to CSV so you can print them out for meetings or keep them documented.

Building Your Company’s Social Media Profile

It all sounds like a walk in the park with a couple of sentences here and there but if you do it right, it’s far more than that. Organisations go out of their way to get the press’ attention and they forget that there’s a reason that the word ‘media’ is one half of ‘social media’. You can get all the press you want for free. Advertising, publishing and engaging with customers is right at your doorstep – all you need to do is utilize it. P.S Don’t forget to follow us!  
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Katrina Holmes

Hey, I'm the Content Manager at Ebsta responsible for creating and maintaining our web content, blogs and our hip 'n' happening social media presence.

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