Everywhere you search these days, you are going to find plenty of advice about everything you need to know to be successful with social media. Most of that advice is tried and true and just as valuable today as it was before. Other tips, however, are in need of retirement. Not every rule that applied at the start of social networking is still going to be relevant today as you work to market your business online.
You will find a lot of conflicting advice as you search for ways to build up a strong social media presence. The important thing is to weed through all of that advice to find the best practices that fit with your strategy. Here are some of the tips that have been called “best practice” for a long time but can easily be discarded:
You Must Post Every Day!
This rule really only applies based on the expectations of your audience. If they show interest in interacting with your posts each day, then keeping a steady stream of updates from day-to-day can be a good call for your business. But, if you’re only seeing a lot of engagement during certain days and times of the week, you can limit your posting to those time windows. The important thing is, when you do post, make sure that it is something valuable that will get your audience talking.
Ignore Traditional Advertising!
You have probably read somewhere that traditional advertising is dead. Well, that’s just not true (if it were, how do you explain all of the online ads?). The thing with traditional advertising is that, no matter how much you spend on it, it does not build a brand. It does not win you loyalty. What it can do is bring awareness to your brand and from there; you can grow your business.
Never Post on Autopilot!
There are many out there who are whole-heartedly against the idea of setting up automated posts for social media. In some cases, this rule should be followed: don’t send every new follower an automated direct message thanking them for following, and don’t tweet every time something new is posted to an RSS feed. It can be hard to commit to posting frequently. It can be time consuming! So, don’t be afraid to create your quality content and then use technology to post it for you on a predetermined schedule that fits for your brand.
Don’t Forget Your Call to Action!
Most of the Facebook updates we see will end in the same way: Like this post! Share this post! Buy this product! In small doses, this can be effective. But when you end every single status update with the same request, it can start to have a negative impact on your audience. You cannot demand that they take an action, only hope for the best.
Only Post at “This” Time
Every expert has their own equation for the absolute best time to post content to social networks in order to get the most engagement. And it probably works well… for them. You do not have to follow another person’s timeline for posting. There is some truth behind posting at certain times. You want to hit your target audience when they are the most active. But the only way to figure out when that time is for you is to do some testing.
Maybe Brand X’s audience has the highest engagement from 9am to 11am during the week, but yours doesn’t log on until 6 pm. Do a little legwork to find out what your ideal posting time is to reach maximum engagement with your followers.
The Internet is awash with good advice on how to best navigate the social media landscape. There is also a lot of nonsense that can be tossed aside as you form your best social media strategy.