Spring Cleaning Your Social Media
We spend a lot of time seeking out fans on social media, asking people to friend or follow us, giving people the ability to keep in touch, see what we're doing and be part of our lives, remotely. So, when should you take that opportunity away? When those people aren't serving your needs, and you aren't serving theirs either. How do you know when that's happening? Let's talk about Spring Cleaning your social media!
Once or twice a year, a good exercise is to take stock of who your followers are, and how they are interacting with you. The way you evaluate the benefits of your interactions is different for each social media channel - just like the purpose for those channels is site-specific. For example, if you have many connections on LinkedIn, and you can identify people who don't respond to personal messages, or whose responses were less than helpful, or perhaps just weren't very prompt, it might be time to bid those connections adieu.
Some people believe in 'collecting' connections to maximize their network reach. However, we say, your network is only as strong as the weakest link. If you have people whose names you don't even recognize, or you can't remember when or why you connected with them, drop them a line and ask to explore how you can help each other in the near future. If they don't respond or you don't find their response useful, go ahead and unlink with them. That way, every single person you ARE connected with is more likely to be willing to help out when you need them. Keep in mind that you need to show your value to THEM as well; this isn't just a one-way street.
You might notice that you have some followers who only result in marketing spam, taking up your precious time with pitches that don't relate to your business, or adding you to unwanted mailing lists. It's okay to unsubscribe, unfollow or unfriend them - though it would be polite to let them know why you're going. Maybe they didn't realize that they were delivering unrelated content and could switch you to a different list, or just need to hear that you're not happy in your social media relationship with them so they can improve their own business. Remember, feedback is a valuable piece of data you can provide to them.
Sometimes people are actually reading along, and just don't 'like', comment, share or interact with your posts in online space. You want to make sure that you're keeping those people as your fans, because you never know when something you say or do may cause them to become an engaged follower. You may need to ask those people directly, "What can I do to gain your likes/comments/shares?" I once had a dentist who never interacted with my posts on social media, but every time I came for an appointment she had a comment or story about a recent post of mine, which showed me that she was actually very engaged with my content, she just didn't want to use social media to talk about it: She preferred to chat while I was in her office. Well, that is the purpose of social media after all - to make connections and have conversations! So let your fans tell YOU how they want to interact with you.
Don't forget that nearly every social media channel has analytics built-in these days - either free or as a paid add-on service. Pinterest can tell you which of your pins is the most popular. Twitter can not only identify which Tweets are getting responses but can help you boost those messages so they have a wider reach, while keeping to a specific budget. Facebook has a highly sophisticated ad service that is based on their powerful analytics called Insights. This is where it's important to know your client (see this post) so you can accurately target your ads to the people you most want to reach. Each of these sites will tell you how many people have clicked on, favorited/liked or shared your posts so you can track your progress.
If you are still unsure of how to go about doing Spring Cleaning of your social media - contact us! We can give you advice in a one-off meeting or schedule a few sessions to give you repeat support. We want to keep you as engaged fans, so let us know how we're doing!