Social media is here to stay, and businesses of all types are taking advantage of the many benefits social networking offers. Those finding success are the ones able to breathe life into their organization, creating successful and sustainable social brand engagement. To get you started, here are five best practices for engaging socially:
1) Find Your Voice. We all have different opinions, experiences and personalities. This must also hold true for organizations hoping to create online relationships. Without an appropriate and consistent voice, it is nearly impossible to fuel engagement. Here are a few tips on how to find your organization’s voice:
- Define your organization’s personality; funny, serious, youthful, etc…
- Create a style guide to assist in internal understanding and consistency
- Look to similar organizations who’ve already built an engaging online voice
2) Be an Active Leader. Those organizations leading the charge in innovation benefit from increased exposure on social. If you hope to be part of the online conversation, the best thing to do is give people something to talk about. When others talk about your business – including you on lists, congratulating you and honoring your success – online engagement spikes organically. Here are a few ways RingCentral has been leveraging leadership to build brand engagement:
- Listed as an OnDemand Top 100 Honoree
- RingCentral named “Top Workplace” by Denver Post
- Winner of PC Magazine’s Editors’ Choice award
To take even more advantage of these opportunities, be sure to thank those who’ve mentioned you and share those mentions with your communities through blog announcements, Facebook posts, tweets, etc. – just as we have done in the example above.
3) Always Be Responsive. It’s easy for businesses to engage when others have something positive to say. But what about those times when the conversations aren’t so great? These are probably some of the most important times to get brand engagement right! Lashing out and taking a defensive approach can often backfire and ignoring is even worse. While it can be difficult to respond to criticism or admit fault, it’s wise to have a response strategy for all circumstances.
4) Use The Right Platform Techniques. Every social network has unique ways to best engage. The use of hashtags can increase visibility on Twitter. Starting and contributing discussions in LinkedIn groups can position brand employees as thought leaders. And businesses can now use their Facebook Page to comment, share and “Like”. By routinely engaging as your brand, you’ll quickly see overall engagement increase.
5) Create and Maintain Structure. While it’s a good idea to be authentic and spontaneous, it is also just as important to create and maintain a strategy for brand engagement. Content calendars can help ensure your voice and messaging remain consistent and help your brand continue to have a presence on key platforms. Just as businesses require a business plan, so must they have a social engagement plan. Creating and sticking to this plan is essential for successful social brand-building.
What best practices would you recommend for brand engagement on social? Share your tips on the comments below.
Originally published May 10, 2013, updated Aug 07, 2020