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7 Ways to make social media work for you in 2015

What if you really could have a fairy godmother to make your dreams come true? What would you wish for? If you answered, “a successful online presence”, you’re in the right place, in the right millennium!

 As the founder of SocialMediaFai...

Happy New Year! It is hard to believe that we are starting another new year. A year filled with ups, downs, gains, losses, and puzzles that are just waiting to be explored. If you are like most business owners, you have now realized that social media is becoming more and more important to your success. Perhaps you have even made a New Year's resolution to learn more and to get it working for you.

Social media is a place where people regularly gather to stay connected to their friends and families, access breaking news stories, create connections within their communities and search out like-minded individuals. Social media is also a place where businesses can provide customer service, create connections with their clients and tell their stories.

Sad to say that many, if not most, businesses are getting it wrong. Managers and the C-Suite are often most concerned about immediate returns rather than cultivating long-term relationships. Yes, businesses need to turn a profit to survive, however, taking the time to invest in providing your clients with quality content that they want to consume can increase profits in the long run.

We want you to succeed.

Here are seven ways to get social media working for you in 2015.

1. Choose the platforms that make sense

Do you know who your clients are? Whom are you talking to? Where do they spend the most time? Take the time to write down everything you know about your ideal client and then pick the platform that makes the most sense.

2. Remember, it is not all about you

An important key to being successful in social media is to remember that it is not your personal soapbox. Take the time to engage and interact with your clients. Talk about what is important to them in their worlds and take the time to educate them. Remember, having the ability to reach people in their private time is a privilege, not a right. Social media is not for spamming people with one ad after another.

3. Walk the walk, but talk the talk

We often see businesses who are all too eager to schedule and automate everything, so that one post automatically gets pushed out to multiple platforms. Time saver? Yes... however, it is a surefire way to be ignored. Every platform has its own language; learn it and use it.

4. Create content that is shareable

Time is spent crafting your posts and sharing it on multiple platforms. The goal is to have people consume it and share it within their networks. This is how you extend your reach organically. So, what makes a post shareable? It has to contain content that people feel their friends and colleagues need to see. Everyone likes tips, tricks and insider information... create content that provides real value.

5. Tell your story

One of the nicest things about social media is the ability to tell stories. This is the time to be open about who your company is and what it stands for. Be true to your mission statement and take the time to tell that story through pictures, videos and integrated campaigns. This means blogging. Creating and maintaining a blog on your website provides your clientele with valuable information and also organically boosts your search engine optimization.

6. Use the analytics

The nicest thing about posting on social media is that it is all measurable. Take the time to look at all the analytics and evaluate what is working, and where you are falling short. This is valuable information that is usually underused.

7. It is all in the visuals

2015 is going to be all about great quality visuals and videos!

Ensure that your images are current and unique. Stock images are always acceptable if you do not have the budget to produce top quality custom visuals. Take the time to check out all the stock agencies and find the one that most meets your needs.

There is no longer any reason any company cannot produce video. Smartphones, DSLR cameras, video cameras... the options are endless. Take the time to add video to your marketing mix. You'll love the results.

Social media should be integrated into every department of your business. Take the time to look at your marketing plan and see where you can integrate social media into it. Create a plan, an editorial calendar, to keep track of where you are going and where you have been and remember to track the results regularly.

Image: Sean MacEntee/Flickr
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