Without doubt, social media is the way of the future. The recent addition of new search elements to sites like Facebook (see Facebook’s new Graph Search) that incorporate social interactions (like check-ins, ‘likes,’ and shares) to boost a business’s search rankings are strong evidence.
There are a number of ways that local businesses can benefit from participation in social media. Building a Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, or Pinterest Board, and providing fresh, interactive content for these sites can boost your performance.
But there are many ins and outs to this process. Did you know that there are peak times for posting on sites like Facebook and Twitter? Or that posts that work for one social networking site may not be effective for another? Did you know that you should follow up on each of your feeds at least two times per day? If you have four content streams, that’s eight check-ins per day. Not to mention the need to source content, and reply to community members who are engaging you.
Keeping track of all these elements can almost feel like a second business. And, indeed, there are professionals dedicated solely to the purpose of managing your social media. Consider some of the benefits of hiring an agency to monitor this aspect of online marketing for you.
They Know What People Want
Experts know how to get and grab attention. They also know that remaining engaged on a level that shows personal interest in your online community is important. Little things, like re-tweeting posts and responding to comments, lets the users engaging with you know that they matter. People can sense a one-way relationship, and if all you ever use your networks for is to promote and make “asks,” you’re sure to be defriended or unfollowed (or, at the very least, tuned out).
They Won’t Drop The Ball
Timely responses are key in social media marketing. If responses aren’t posted within 24 hours, users are likely to move on and forget all about your poll, or contest. More than that, experts know how to handle sticky situations—like what to do when you have an angry poster?
They’ve Got Your Number
Social Media Management service providers know everything there is to know. How often, when and where to post. How long to wait between posts. What time of day your updates are most likely to be read and responded to. Media Management also includes analytics to tell you exactly what you’re getting out of your efforts.
So, you can see that you don’t need to become a social media expert to make the most of this trend—but it certainly helps to have one on your team!