Social media rules for business exist for a reason. From local and world news to reviews and recommendations, nowadays people get the vast majority of their information from social media sites. A study done in January of 2017 by Pew Research Center shows that 70% of Americans use some form of social media on a daily basis. Of that number of users, 50% have more than one social media account. So what does that mean for businesses?
How Businesses are Using Social Media
Businesses are using social media to build their reputation, increase brand awareness, better understand their needs, and market their products. That means that if a company or brand is not on social media, they are missing out on a wealth of knowledge and potential connections. Additionally, recent studies show consumers are 50% more likely to choose a company or product based on recommendations and reviews on social media.
When social platforms were first created, there were no written in stone rules as to how to use it. However, since the rules of social media are ever-changing, over time, along with other technology, we have created and recreated rules to produce a socially acceptable online community. Many businesses are failing to use social media in a manner that will expand and cultivate their business because they do not understand the rules of engagement. So what are the rules?
Social Media Rules for Business
The 80/20 rule should always be in effect which means 80% of your posts should be entertaining and informative and 20% should be selling a product or service.
When talking about your company always use the plural in the first person such as we or us.
If you are posting about an individual brand instead of a company, then using the first person singular works better.
Respond to all questions and comments, whether positive or negative, promptly. Usually within 24 hours is acceptable.
Don’t ask for likes, comments, retweets, or shares.
When tagging someone, either a client or employee, do not do it without permission.
When sharing something, always give credit to the page that originally posted the information.
Watch how frequently you post. Nobody wants their feeds filled up by the same company.
Do not take or pirate other company’s hashtags, even if they are doing well with it.
If it does not sound like something you would say in person to someone, don’t put it on social media.
Fill out online profiles completely, be it a personal or a business page.
Don’t use photos that do not represent yourself or your business. Headshots and logos are the most professional.
Do not mix the people you connect with on your business pages with your personal page.
Do not hit post until you have put it through grammar and spell-check.
Don’t focus on selling yourself right off, instead, concentrate on establishing yourself as someone who is an expert in the industry.
Work to provide value to the followers you already have, instead of trying to get more followers.
Social media is an ongoing process. Not a set-up and walk away from it type of thing.
Engagement is more important than numbers.
Business does not mix with religion, politics, or personal beliefs. Keep them off social media.
Plan your updates strategically and make sure they are consistent and frequent.
Don’t feel like you must post on all social media sites. Pick three that work well for your industry and focus on those.
To create content that adds value to the lives of your audience.
Why Follow The Rules?
Practicing proper social media etiquette is one of the most important things you can do for your business in today’s world as it sets the standard for how consumers will view your company and in essence, be one of the biggest deciding factors for where they take their business.