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There’s no question that social media is crucial for business success these days. Platforms like Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter, are all active thriving communities that provide a steady stream of information in our digital age.

As individuals, we look to these online communities to share what we find interesting on the web and to source input about the things that we seek. As a business, it provides a stellar way to communicate with customers, learn their needs and leverage the opportunity to build relationships, all the while boosting your website’s SEO.

Does social media apply to your business? You bet it does. But you want to do it right.  As such, we’ve compiled some tips to help you use your social media channels correctly. Here you go:

Fill Out Your Profile

If you’re just beginning to claim your social accounts for your business, take the time to fill out all possible fields. We’re talking your industry category, address, short descriptions, long descriptions, a profile photo, the works. This is great for local SEO and it’s great practice for your elevator pitch too. It requires you to nail down and simplify what it is you offer and to say such concisely.

If you have accounts that have existed for a while, take the time to double check that the info is up to date and relevant. You may find that you’ve left something out that is actually uber valuable for your SEO, like god forbid your office address is listed incorrectly. Search engines cross reference your data on the web to ensure that the information is accurate. When conflicting data is found, this confuses the search engines and can lead them to just not list you.  

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Be Human

You’re a human being and it IS about bringing yourself to the table. You bring something to your business which no one else can – YOU. While there are boundaries to be had, everyone in the workplace can contribute their unique perspectives to share via social media channels. So long as your target audience is always kept in mind, you have license to bring personality to your content. People want to see that companies are human. Be funny, pull on heart strings, show that you’re goofy, that you drink copious amounts of coffee and that you’re experts in your field. The point of social media is to engage and that means allowing yourself to be who you are and to be proud of it.

It’s Social Media

Be social. It’s about spreading the love and engaging with your audience. It isn’t just a platform for you to spew your marketing material. No one jumps onto Facebook thinking “I can’t wait to see all the great ads today!” (Well, unless you’re in marketing or design I suppose…) But the point is - the purpose of social media is to nurture your existing relationships and create new ones by sharing useful content.  That means responding to comments, actually monitoring your social accounts to see what’s up and sharing, liking, retweeting the stuff that speaks to you within your network.

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Social media isn’t just a mouthpiece to spread word of your latest promotion (although it’s good for that too), it first and foremost is a tool to get to know your audience, figure out what they want and need and then give it to them because you care.

Less Is More

In keeping with being social, don’t go hogging the conversation. Don’t clog the feed by posting incessantly, it’ll just annoy your visitors immensely and probably cause them to un-friend you. Long-winded posts that take up the full length of the feed are an eye-sore. In this day and age of go-go-go, you want to keep what you have to say short and sweet because people will overlook what appears to be too long. If you do want to explain something in depth, do so in a blog post and then share the link on your social channels, using a snappy headline to reel them in. Less is so much more.

Be a Lover, Not a Fighter

Have some class – your social media profile is not the place to trash talk your competitors. Nor is it the place for you to fight back with petty words when you receive a bad online review. As ludicrous as a negative comment is, don’t delete it, take the opportunity to show your loving followers that you seriously consider the suggestions of ALL your customers (even the naysayers). Simply respond with a “thanks for the comment, we’ll take your suggestions into consideration” and then do take the advice if there is something your business can improve upon. If it’s just a “Negative Nancy” leaving a bad review, don’t worry, your fans will see through it, they’ll witness you taking the higher road and multiple great reviews always outweigh one bad review.

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Pay Attention to Your Spelling and Grammar

Nothing throws credibility out the window like poor grammar or spelling errors. It makes you look lazy and illiterate, neither of which is flattering for any business. Proof read what you share to avoid looking dumb. (Note: 

Content is Always King

What you say, what you share, is who your business is. That’s why you want to be sharing and producing quality content. That means well thought out, researched, in-depth blog posts that bring value to your audience. If it’s useful, it will get shared. Think about the videos that go viral - people showing how easy it is to make a nutritious meal, makeup tutorials, and the like. If you can give your audience something that will serve them in their daily life, it’s worth their time and worth sharing. Sharing means caring – so care on and spread knowledge.  

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