Social media is not just for teens, tweens and millennials. Sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and SnapChat can be appropriate for many types of businesses, as they allow for two-way communication with your customers. Social media also provides you with the opportunity to share visual elements of your business with photos and/or videos to entice, intrigue or amuse your followers and hopefully turn them into customers.

The question many of my clients have is how often should they post on social media?  The answer depends on your industry and how many followers you have.  At the very least, you should be posting several times per week. The more educational and informative the content that you have to share, the better.

The next question they ask concerns what to post. A company’s social media posts can’t overly salesy or self-promotional. Someone once said that you can either be a source of information for others or a drain of others’ time.  It is better to be a source than a drain, so you should share articles related to your industry in your posts or if you have a blog, you can share some of your blog entries on your social media channels.  If you are going to post something promotional about your company, it is best to do it no more than once a week. Any more than that and your followers will tune you out. Remember…educate and inform whenever possible. Share your knowledge and expertise to help others.

It is also important to comment on other people’s posts.  Be sure to follow others in your industry and when you read a post that you like, respond to it.  Become a part of the conversation. Add your insights to the posts of others. Share your own experiences. When people see that you have something worthwhile to say, they may start following you too.

To be successful with your social media efforts, you should make social media a part of your overall marketing strategy.  You can run campaigns on your social media channels, provided you don’t do it every day. Doing that will keep your company top of mind with your customers and followers and improve your search rankings.

Be sure to measure your results.  If you aren’t getting the desired response to your social media posts, you need to try to determine the reason and try to fix it.  Perhaps your content isn’t of interest to your followers. Or your posts are too long and people lose interest. Or maybe you are posting on days or at times when your followers are not active on social media.  You can use the analytics functions on each social media platform to determine how many people have seen your posts and whether they are taking further action.  You can also do an analysis via Google Analytics.

Related to measuring results, be sure to pay attention to negative feedback. No one likes to read negative comments about their company, but if you take the time to review the post and the comments you can determine if there is an issue in your business that needs to be corrected.  When you pay attention to negative feedback, you can make the necessary adjustments and improve your business.

Social media isn’t just a teen thing anymore. It has become a necessary marketing tool for organizations and businesses of all shapes and sizes.

Don’t make these marketing blunders on social media