4 Ways to Stop Sucking at Social Media

September 29, 2014

10:30 am

Are you tweeting into a vacuum? Lacking likes on your Facebook posts? Only in your mom’s Google+ circles? You might be sucking at social media.

You’re not alone. Countless entrepreneurs struggle with using social networking platforms to help develop an audience, grow a following, and build a community around their brand or business.

Social Media Ain’t Easy

Social networking isn’t an easy part of marketing for entrepreneurs. It takes time to manage and effort to understand.

Just tweeting, posting, or sharing information isn’t enough in a world saturated with a variety of content. You must develop strategies, create and curate content, and constantly seek to add value.

But that’s not an excuse to put things on autopilot and continue to suck at your social media efforts.

Stop Sucking at Social Media Right Now

The good news is that you can follow a few simple rules to immediately improve your social media standing and start creating an engaged, excited community around what you’re doing in your business.

1. Give People a Chance to Engage

Are you providing other people with a chance to chime in to the conversation? If you only share your own content and every single post or tweet you create contains a link your audience is supposed to click, you’re not giving anyone a chance to participate.

You have to create a space for your followers to contribute and engage with you. Ask questions. Provide an answer. Suggest new ideas. Foster a discussion.

And stop sharing nothing but headlines + links.

2. Make It About Others

Quick: who’s the most annoying person at any dinner, party, or gathering?

The one that talks loudly and at length about themselves.

You’re sucking at social media if you do this with your brand or your business. Even though it’s your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or G+ account, you don’t need to spend all your time talking about — or promoting — yourself.

Give others a boost, praise a collaborator, or share something that someone else is doing in the industry that’s really exciting. When you quit talking about yourself, you give others the space to do it for you. And that’s much more powerful in the eyes of consumers or clients.

3. Socialize Like a Human Being

People don’t want to connect with your brand or business. They want to connect with the other people behind it. If you want to succeed here, you need to socialize like the human you are.

That means replying to comments and tweets. It means asking follow-up questions and saying “please” and “thank you.” It’s about sharing personal stories and ideas.

4. Have Fun

Social media may be a relatively new phenomenon in the whole scheme of things, but the idea behind it is older than dirt. You’re on social platforms to build relationships and connect with others.

Just because social networking is mostly done online, a computer screen shouldn’t stop you from understanding there’s another person on the other end waiting for you to make a real connection with them.

So have some fun and let your personality shine through. Express who you are and invite others to connect with that entertaining, empowering, and exciting presence.

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Kali Hawlk is a writer and content manager who specializes in helping financial businesses. She’s a member of the Heroic Search content team and authors Common Sense Millennial. You can connect with her by tweeting @KaliHawlk.

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