How-Tu Tuesday: Sharing The Love On Social
With Valentine’s Day almost upon us, we’re taking a look this week at the importance of sharing ‘the love’ on social media and generating positive interactions and engagement with your followers.
For both individuals and brands alike, being on social media opens the doors to both positive and negative feedback, and no matter what you post or share, there are no guarantees on how people will react to it. However, there are a number of traits you can adopt to put the odds in your favour of being received positively by those who follow you and the wider social community.
Create Meaningful Content
The content you create should have value and provide your followers with information they can take away and use in some way. This may be a motivational quote, a link to a compelling article, interactive media such as a live feed, GIF, video or a slide of images. Research and identify your customers interests and curate content around those interests, thus instigating a two-way conversation and a string of positive interaction. Of course, social channels should be used to promote sales and campaigns, but these types of posts should be intertwined with much more organic and thought-provoking messages that will not only gain the attention of your readership, but it will also enhance the reach of your promotional message, as users are more likely to come back to read your content if they develop a relationship and positive image of your company.
Before social media, many brands appeared almost as robots to the public, with no real people behind them. Customer service consisted of emailing, writing letters or phoning and speaking to an automated machine… and maybe you got to speak to an actual human after at least 30 minutes of being kept on hold and listening to the same repeated message – not a very enjoyable experience.
With the evolution of social media, brands now have the opportunity to show their human side and provide their customers with a much more connected and instantaneous experience. When you are having a conversation with someone face-to-face, you expect instant replies, and although there may be a small delay, conversations are able to flow much more effectively compared with the traditional communication tools already mentioned.
Having a team who can respond almost immediately to any interaction with your customers, will greatly improve your reputation online and your trustability, establishing good foundations for a long-term relationship, eventually leading to possible monetary values. The success comes when you turn followers into customers.
Turn The Negative Into A Positive
We are all human and as the previous section states – we should make the most of that. However, there are times when you must rise above your natural human instinct and remember you’re a brand, with the eyes of your followers, influences, media and regulations upon you. So be smart and never react impulsively to a negative comment. Always turn negative comments into a positive situation; if a customer has had a bad experience with your brand or a follower reacts badly to something you’ve said, turn this into an opportunity to show them some love; if you have heard of the term, “kill them with kindness”, this would be the time to put it into action. You may not experience benefits from all negativity that comes your way, but reacting in a calm, helpful and friendly manner will often satisfy most customers’ complaints.
Going beyond customers’ expectations is where you will really succeed in excelling at the customer journey. Think beyond correcting the situation and identify ways where you can get further ahead in people’s opinion of you. They may even think better of you than before the negative situation even occurred. This may involve donating to charity, offering something special to the consumer or simply recognising you were at fault, rectifying the situation and taking full responsibility. Always fight the urge to argue; now is not the time to be proud or stubborn.
This final piece of advice may seem a little obvious or cheesy, but then again, it is Valentine’s. However, it is surprising the number of brands who fail to remember the definition of entertainment. In the fast-paced, digital environment that most of us are consumed by, we demand to be entertained, and because of this, customers have developed very short attention spans. If something doesn’t grab our imaginations or hold our interest, we simply adopt the attitude of ‘onto the next thing’ with a quick flick of the thumb to scroll down.
Whether light-hearted or heavy-hitting, it is crucial that your content is memorable, and creates a desire to come back for more. This can easily be achieved by sharing messages that encompass all of the above; meaningful content that highlights your human side and leaves the viewer with a positive impression.
And remember one similarity between the digital and “real” world: when you give the love, you also receive the love. Happy Valentine’s everyone!