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Social Media Manners - Please and Thank You!

August 6, 2012 // By: Julia Giacoboni

LISTEN UP SOCIAL PEEPS. As a community manager, you have two allegiances!

First, to your brand.  Rep it, and rep it well!

Second, to your fans. And that’s where social media etiquette comes in.

Social media breaks down the barriers many customers encounter – the red tape of being stuck on hold…that cold feeling left after reading the frigid text of an automated email. I shiver at the thought. But, HEY, we’ve all been there. “Where is a REAL person? Is there anyone who can listen to my feelings?!”

This no longer has to be an issue. With the power of social media, brands and companies aren’t so faceless anymore! But before you take to posting, you’ve gotta learn your manners!

1)      Don’t JUST sell. Your fans love what you do! Invite them to sit down and stay a while. Go ahead, slip into something more comfortable - this is your chance to get friendly.  Chances are they’re familiar with you and what you offer. Now, let them get to know you. Instead of posting everyday about what you’re selling, share things they’ll enjoy. Put yourself in their shoes and ask “what would I want to see?” From fun photos and facts, to coupons, tips and behind the scene looks – here’s your chance to get creative and engage!

2)      Don’t over-post. Don’t overwhelm your followers with static. The more frequently they see you, the more likely they’ll tune you out. (Anything but that!) Post when you have something relevant to share. Let your fans be the first to know and share what you love. You don’t want to slam them with meaningless back to back posts because too much action on your page can turn them off, for good. If they don’t unlike you, they’ll unsubscribe from your page, which means your posts will fall on deaf ears. So take it easy, and make a posting schedule so there is a rhythm to your online presence.

3)      Never ignore. If a customer has beef, man up! Acknowledge them and respond to their issue in a polite, short and sweet statement. Don’t delete comments, don’t hash out details for fans to see, and don’t argue. Ignoring it just makes it worse. If someone posts regarding a problem, they’re looking to grab your attention – they won’t stop until they get it. Put your efforts towards resolving the issue offline by providing the customer with a point of contact. This shows that you care about their issue and can take care of any problems that come your way. Go you!

4)      Give them something to talk about. An incentive will do the trick - coupons, exclusive discounts, news, or photos. Offer a deal to your fans that they won’t be able to get anywhere else!

 5)      Listen and interact. Your followers are potential customers – keep tabs on what they’re doing! When a fan posts a question, answer it in a timely manner. Engage them in conversation! Did someone comment on your photo about going on vacation? Ask them where to! It sounds simple, but small talk can lead to a sale. It’s worth the extra effort to get your fans talking!

Remember, YOU are the online voice for your brand. Learn it and live it through each and every post. Still having trouble relating? Use the same polite approach in your online voice that you’d use in person. Be sure to acknowledge the fact that your fans aren’t going to be your customers every single day. But with the help of social media, you can be on their daily radar, so when the time comes to buy – you’ll be there!

Topics: Advertising (general), Advertising Trends, Facebook, Marketing tips, social, Social Marketing, Social Media Marketing, twitter