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3 Things to Know Before Considering a Multi-Location Social Strategy

April 8, 2014 // By: Julia Giacoboni

 

When it comes to instant interaction, customer service and questions, the first place many customers go is a business’s social page. From complaints to praise – users let it all out for the company and fellow users to see. But there’s a lot that goes into creating that page, and even more if your company has more than one storefront or location.

To start, you’ve probably already asked yourself that one simple, yet critical question – do I create a general account for my business, or a page for each of my locations?

Excellent question, yes, but there’s no clear, black or white answer– mainly because there’s so much to consider; including man power, budget, time, your company’s growth and future plans, as well as areas you’re located in and the customers you’re serving in those areas.

Before making the decision between one social page per network, or ten social pages per network, here are the most important things to consider to ensure social success.

Upkeep

Consider: what you’re taking on and the day to day tasks at hand.

Say your business has 10 different locations. Ask yourself: “Can I be original 10 times every day?” Do you have enough items to talk about and engage an audience 3 times a week, for 10 different pages? That’s 30 original posts, for one social platform alone.

If you work with a team, or have the time and resources, it could make sense to keep all locations separate. If you’re manning this on your own, you may burn out. Even if you’re using a mix of content including promotional incentives, backlinks to your website, photos, memes, blog posts, and you’re recycling content – there’s a lot to be mindful of.

Be aware that if you create a page for each location, each account needs to be treated the same. That means equal time and equal effort. Consider all of the planning, strategizing, and content you will need to put in to make all pages successful, and whether you are up to that challenge.

Last, you also need to take note of monitoring the pages – can you address each question and comment that comes through for every operation?

Promotion & Growth

Consider: how you are going to make the page grow and how you’ll be found by users.

Everyone needs to know about how and where to find you on social media - whether it’s through email blasts, your signature, links on your website, or in-store call to actions. Figure out how you can approach this if you’re going to promote separate pages by location, how you’ll name these pages, and how audiences can easily locate them when they want to interact with you.

Advertising is also something that needs to be considered. In order for an account to grow and attract a relevant audience, most need to be supported with ads. Think about whether you can allocate money for separate budgets and manage 10 (or potentially more) different ad campaigns to keep the pages growing month to month.

In conclusion

With one master page, you can still highlight the overall message and portray the main image of your business. Sprinkle in content from your individuals stores each month – whether it’s an outstanding employee, an amazing deal, or special event.

And with multiple locations, you can really drill into each specific audience. Albeit the audiences per page may be smaller in size, you can easily customize your messaging and overall engagement with those specific audiences, keeping them glued to your updates and engaged with your content.

Remember, only bite off what you can chew. While you may be feeling ambitious and want to create multiple pages to represent all of your stores - consider the upkeep first and foremost. Those pages are only successful if their content and ad campaigns are successful, backed by hours of effort and attentiveness.

An empty, blank page with no updates, no artwork, and little-no fans can be a turn off to your brand overall, and will not be beneficial to your social media marketing efforts for your business as a whole. Start by taking on what you can manage, giving it your all, then begin building it from there.

All the best,

Julia Giacoboni

Julia is a Social Media Team Leader at Stream Companies, a Philadelphia area advertising agency.

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Topics: social, Social Marketing, social marketing strategy, social media, Social Media Marketing, social media strategy