What to say When?

blogstrugglesThe “new world” of Social Media can be an overwhelming, fast-moving arena. Questions like when to post, how often do I need to be out there, if I respond to someone, will it be politically correct for everyone? and how do I get my customers to engage are things we all think about. I was reading an article from Inc. the other day – “30 Tips for Using Social Media in Your Business” and I thought that April Joyner had some relevant, easy to use ideas for all of us. I especially liked these:

  • Interact with visitors—really. Just putting up a blog or a Facebook fan page won’t do much good if visitors sense the flow of conversation only goes one way. In fact, Matt Mullenweg, founder of blogging platform WordPress, lists not participating in comments as a surefire way to kill a community.
  • Reward customer loyalty. Through social media, companies can not only run promotions more frequently than coupons in the mail, but also devise more whimsical and engaging campaigns. Sprinkles Cupcakes, a bakery chain based in Beverly Hills, CA, uses Twitter to send out daily promotional offers. The tweets, which ask customers to whisper a “password” to receive a free treat, have helped the company draw more than 17,000 followers.
  • See what people are saying about you. A quick search for mentions of your company on Facebook, Twitter, and Yelp can yield a goldmine of information concerning your reputation. Several users on Yelp, for instance, suggested that employees at Quimby’s Bookstore in Chicago were less than welcoming. After reading the comments, the store focused on improving customer service.
  • Make amends with dissatisfied customers, quickly. Andy Carlson, owner of an Ace Hardware store in Denver, once came across an angry Twitter update from a customer who had bought a tool that broke after one use. He resolved the issue in a matter of minutes by referring the customer to an area store and notified him of Ace’s lifetime guarantee.

And my favorite –

  • Help others promote you. Social media can help you find passionate customers who are more than willing to spread the word about your company.