In today’s world where so much online communication happens via social media, it’s vital to understand how to use these platforms better than other businesses in your industry. So let’s get into the four ways to outperform your competition on social media.
It comes down to executing the fundamentals. The first strategy is to post with regularity.
My friend, if you want to differentiate yourself and prove that you’re not just an abandoned Facebook page, you must post consistently. You can have the best business, yet because you haven’t sent out a message in a week or month, people start thinking, Did they go out of business? Why haven’t posted anything on social media? Consumers’ heavy use of these platforms only reinforces this perception.
As an example, Facebook’s search functionality is growing rapidly. They’re in active competition with Google. It’s Mark Zuckerberg vs. Larry Page and Sergey Brin (Google’s co-founders). That said, when someone searches for your business on Facebook and they come to a page that hasn’t posted in three and a half weeks, they’re going to think either you’re struggling mightily, doing this part-time or are out of business. That’s the bottom line. Ideally, you have a never-ending waterfall of compelling, engaging and value-driven posts.
The second strategy to outperform your competition on social media is to get real fans. You need prospects, not just hollow accounts. Likes and followers build credibility and marketplace trust.
For example, if you’re looking for a Realtor on Twitter, one account may have 100 followers while another has 1,000. Which one do you automatically trust more? Furthermore, you can monetize these communities once you have a base of potential customers.
Obviously, you want people to believe in and buy from you. To accomplish this, you need to have a fan base that is large and growing. We all start from humble beginnings, but you can get periodically better as you move towards becoming the most liked, most followed person in your industry. What would it mean for your business to be able to say, “We are the most-followed Realtor on Twitter,” or “We are the most-liked dentist on Facebook?” Even if you segment it by geography, such as the most-liked chiropractor on the East Coast, that designation creates significant credibility.
As you know, in business you need someone to know, like and trust you to get a sale. The third component is readily available to you. For your business’ future survival, start growing your customer base online.
The third way to make sure you outperform your competition on social media is to engage with the leads you’ve worked hard to acquire. These people want to know more about you. They have expressed an interest in what you do. Reply to and thus involve them.
If you avoid doing this, would-be customers begin to think your social media profile is just a vacated Facebook page with scheduled posts. Are they going to stick around? Not very long.
On the other hand, if you respond to your customers within 24 to 48 hours, you bring more positive attention to your business. Responsiveness can be the difference between two pages that each have 10,000 likes, but one engages its audience while the other does not.
Finally, the fourth way for you to outperform your competition on social media is to measure what works. You can master what you measure. You should determine what picture, headline, blog content and messaging converts best with your audience.
How can you measure that? Pay attention to your likes, comments, and shares. If someone shares your content, they trust you enough to expose your brand to their friends. Identify which piece of content received the most engagement and tailor all your other messages around that theme. That’s how you win the game.
To boost your business’ online perception, having a regularly updated, growing and responsive social media profile is now just as important as owning a website. If you want to shine online and gain the trust of younger markets like millennials, you need to seriously #GetSocial.
Michael Guberti is a Fordham University student and social media and business blogger at Teenager Entrepreneur, the social media marketing and entrepreneurship training business he operates with his brother, Marc Guberti. He can be reached at email@example.com or at 914-722-6005.