Social Media: Choosing a Winning Combination

As a culture, we generally like to move fast. Within a few seconds, we can pull directions to a restaurant, reviews of a shoe, or even our fantasy football roster from our smart phones. Instant gratification is the norm. And with a 24-hour news cycle, it’s no wonder companies maintain that expectation.

But when it comes to using social media, it’s better to think smart and make wise choices before moving too quickly. Think more about the strategy, and less about the tools. Doing so will help your social media plan be more successful, and will be a better use of dollars spent.  Here are a few helpful questions to ask yourself as you develop your strategy:

What is your objective? Is it simply to obtain as many followers as possible, or do you genuinely want to start a dialogue between you and your audience? Social media strategies work best when the user is fully committed to spending time engaging those who take an interest. If you’re taking the time to listen and interact, you’ll reap the rewards.

Where is your audience? This is an important question, because you can have a blog, Facebook and Twitter account set up and active, but if your audience isn’t there, then it’s a waste of your time. Do they respond better to texts? How about email? If you can figure out which form of communication is best for your audience, it will go a long way.

Does the company encourage a social culture? In other words, if you set up a Twitter account for the company, will every Tweet need to go through three rounds of legal approval, plus approval by the CEO? Perhaps social media tools like Facebook and Twitter may not be the best way to communicate your message. A blog might be a more effective tool.

Above all, keeping your company’s mission and vision in line with your social media strategy is sure to be a winning combination. So take a deep breath, pour yourself a cup of coffee and do some thinking. Your company will thank you.

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