As an online marketing agency people are always asking us the secret of building a successful online community, how to optimise their accounts or simply just use social media effectively. And of course we sign them up and sort all the above out for them. But truthfully there is no one secret to success in this game. Experience helps; knowing the platforms inside out, research and just plain old hard work are the only ways to succeed in the social media world.
Okay so youâ€™ve got yourself a Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, WordPress, YouTube, Linkedin and countless other channels, now what? Having the attitude of â€˜build it and they will comeâ€™ is not going to cut it here. Sure youâ€™ll attract a few people but donâ€™t you want to attract a whole LOAD of people instead? Donâ€™t you want to have a community who interact with you AND each other? To reach consumers who have never thought of using your brand before and turn them in to loyal patrons and ambassadors of your channel?
The key word in all this is community. Community and interaction. But not just on your own network, itâ€™s important, in fact integral to interact on other networks too, ones that are relevant to you and your brand. By making yourself a valued member of these other relevant communities you are in turn making your own brand voice prominent and heard. Do some research, find out where the conversations and feedback around your areas of interest, expertise or brand are and make sure you are seen and heard there as much as possible.
A good starting point is following the right people on Twitter or joining groups and fan pages on the likes of Facebook and Linkedin. Perhaps set up some Google alerts and start researching what RSS feeds to follow.
But donâ€™t just be a voyeur. Join in with the conversation topics, start one of your own, post pictures and videos that add to these communities. In turn make yourself a valuable member of THEIR brand pages. Share content, share more content and just when you think youâ€™ve shared all you can share a little bit more.
The most successful users of social media are not the ones spending all their time focusing solely on their own channels, they are the people who are contributing and collaborating on other peopleâ€™s pages too. Itâ€™s time to give something back.