Where's the Love? 5 Keys to Social Media Growth
Let's say, hypothetically, you've just started being more intentional about your social media presence as a professional. Say you're trying to better promote your work as a consultant; working to grow a small company's online presence; or perhaps you're searching for a new career opportunity and want to position yourself as an expert by starting a blog. There's no time like the present!
And for the first week or two, you're excited, as if setting sail for new territory; you're getting your fresh & interesting content out there for the digital world to see. And what does that world offer in return? A few likes from your friends and family, which feels, let's be honest, obligatory. Then radio silence.
If you're like me, that twitterpated feeling quickly turns into self-pity—Why don't they love me!—or envy—You're telling me so and so got more likes than we did, [insert curse word of your choice]!
In short: You're not feeling the love.You wanted to reach new eyes and ears, share your knowledge, grow your business—so what happened?
I'm here to say I've felt your pain, but patience is key. Growing digital channels is a long journey without an "end date." You have to accept its ongoing nature.
Growing digital channels is a long journey without an "end date." You have to accept its ongoing nature.
When I became a social media specialist for Creatis, I took the lack of love a little too personally. Was what I'd written not pithy or interesting enough? Was I a bad social media writer or writer in general? A few months into the gig, I got over these insecurities and starting digging into the why behind the initial lack of growth and engagement. One thing that enabled me to work smarter was the support of a supervisor who gave me space to really learn how to craft and publish effective social media.
Even more important than understanding the algorithms (which, infuriatingly, change all the time on your favorite social channels) is being adaptable. You have be OK with getting it imperfectly or not reaching your goals overnight. But you also have to be proactive. You have to stay relevant and take in as much insight as you've got time for. Because of the ever-changing nature of digital products and technology, your own personal evolution is necessary.
I'm proud to say, with the help of a collaborative team whose strengths cover my weakenesses, over my time at Creatis we've crafted a brand voice & content that is purposeful, excellent and has driven up engagement, impressions and clicks by the thousands over my tenure. I look forward to continuing to learn and water this tree!
Here are 5 principles to help you start growing your brand on social media.
- Establish Your Brand Voice
- Your voice is your style is your brand. Who are you as a business or consultant or job seeker? Deveop key words that define your style or the brand you're working on. Here a few guiding words I use when speaking in the Creatis brand: professional but approachable, witty, expert, marketing leader, fun, accessible. Establishing your brand voice also means determining the kind of content you're going to publish and what its purpose is. Consistency is key.
- Learn more about developing a "brand voice" from this article.
- Get a Plan in Place
- It seems like a "duh" thing, but you have to create a go-to market plan. Once you've developed your purpose and goals, you have to get them down on paper (or Excel) and lay out a practical plan. It doesn't have to be perfect, but there needs to be a framework to measure against. This plan includes deciding what content to post when and where (what social channels). We use a shareable Excel document to keep our team informed.
- Have a Purpose
- This almost goes without saying, but your content needs to both be good and matter to your audience if your social reach is going to grow. If it's a blog you're starting, who would you like to be reading it? What little corner of the professional world can you shed light on for your audience? Think about problems that you can offer solutions for on social media, whether it's a small company or your personal professional wisdom. Share what you know with who you know needs it.
- Treat it Like a Tree
- You have to keep watering the social media tree for it to bear fruit for your brand. It's going to require ongoing experimentation. Continue to refine who you target and why. Keep asking yourself tough, existential questions and most importantly: be ready to evolve with the technology. Quality & consistency over time leads to results. It's almost as simple as that.
- Use the Tools of the Trade
- Take 10 minutes a day to seek out something you don't know about social media; whether that's paid advertising on LinkedIn, sizing images correctly on Facebook or crafting the best CTA's for your posts. There are tons of resources out there at your disposal, for FREE.
- Seek mentorship from an expert
- Listen to digital/social media podcasts, like the Creatis sponsored In the Key of D: Using Digital to Transform Your Business.
- Invest in a certification or paid training
If you're looking to put your newfound marketing or creative skills to work, learn more about joining the Creatis team below.