Today, social media engagement remains an essential ingredient of business and marketing success. To win over audiences in a world increasingly dominated by instantaneous social media and the 24-hour news cycle, the power of connecting with people can be the difference between success and failure.
Dealing with real-life situations demands knowledge of habits that can be studied and learned over time. Whether engaging with people for the first time, negotiating details of a potential sale, or following up on a potential speaking engagement, you are likely to be initiating and closing deals strictly through social media.
In this article, you will discover how many tactics and techniques for becoming an effective communicator on social media.
Here are 10 tips for effective social media engagement and communication.
- Share Pertinent Information With Others: The Information Economy is a reality, and knowing what to share with others is a key component of establishing brand credibility. While nobody should expect you to divulge business-critical secrets, you can still stand above the crowd by sharing information that can help others rise financially, emotionally and spiritually.
Information is power but guards against the impulse to hoard what will be of value to your audience. It will arouse suspicion within your network and make it less likely that others will share information with you.
- Make Sincere Offers to Assist Others: Whether at your business hub or an informal gathering with clients, it (literally) pays to tell people that you are available to help out at any time. Among the small gestures you can make include: Offer updated contact information (e-mail, text, business address, etc.) Promote your home page URL; give access to previous work like speeches, articles, other publications. Give references to industry leaders, people within your current network.
- Acknowledging People Publicly on Social Media: Sometimes, people dismiss their acts of kindness towards others; (“little things”) without appreciating their worth. So much so that when a colleague or business partner says “Thank You”, the immediate reaction is to recoil as if you did not deserve the accolade.
A much better option is to acknowledge the other person with a simple “You're Welcome” and a smile. Not only are you making people feel appreciated again, but you are likely to benefit from a favorable act in the future.
Recognizing people publicly on social media can go a long way towards building a relationship and getting them to know, like, and trust you.
- Creating an Air of Confidence: One of the most difficult things to do in face-to-face conversation is to appear confident without arrogance or aloofness. This is where your speaking tone and style really come into play.
As a problem solver, you are in a position to empathize with your audience's plight and offer practical solutions that reveal your own curiosity. This, coupled with a calm, sincere and step-wise approach to problem-solving will make you the toast of the crowd.
When communicating on social media you don't have the luxury of voice tone and body language to make that human connection, so be sure to use words or emoticons to really get the feeling you are trying to convey across.
- The Art of Politeness: You'd be amazed how far a little politeness goes in communication. The words “Please” and “Thank you” may seem plain and mundane.
However, when used appropriately, they can help you exude both humility and charisma. Often simultaneously.
- Express Belief in Your Audience's Goals: Never underestimate the power of outside validation. People who come to you for advice often lack self-confidence, so offering even a few words of encouragement can inspire them to greater success. In return, you get the satisfaction of making a difference in someone's life, and both tangible (e.g. sales, references) and non-tangible (e.g. friendship) benefits.
That's the reason why inspirational and motivational quotes and images do well on sites like Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
- Refer to People by Name When Interacting on Social Media: Regardless of how well you know someone, it's never a bad idea to say their name when engaged in conversation. Hearing their name makes listeners feel more at ease, adds to their sense of connectedness and makes the more likely to engage with you beyond the first contact.
- Build Business Networks One Person at a Time: Just as entrepreneurs should not hoard information, they shouldn't shield off their contacts from new people in their fields. Seize opportunities as they arise to connect business people from within your network who have yet to meet. Perhaps something great comes out of it, perhaps not. Networking in this fashion positions you as a facilitator and go-to resource, all the while expanding your own reach in your areas of expertise.
Of course, LinkedIn is one of the most effective social media networks for making business connections.
- Be a Listener: There is no doubt that you are brimming with ideas and are a real go-getter. However, it is just as important to be attentive to what others have to offer. Therefore, allow others to express their business ideas and concerns. This can take the form of one-on-one coaching sessions, team-oriented brainstorming sessions, or Question and Answer sessions after a presentation.
Listening helps you build a meaningful rapport with your audience: exchange stories about start-up growing pains, demonstrate your interest with physical cues and offer positive solutions. Giving others your time is in and of itself a precious gift.
- Speak About the Power of Personal Responsibility: Whether working with a team or on your own, you take responsibility for your actions, both successes, and failures. Therefore, convey these honest, real-life experiences to your audiences and how they helped guide your behavior when facing other challenges.
This is not a time to downplay the effort required to make dreams come true. Use your communication skills to highlight what it takes to come up with a business plan, put together a team of experts to kickstart your activity, and summon the discipline to persevere through the toughest times.
Final Thoughts on Social Media Engagement
Modern entrepreneurship demands that people use every tool at their disposal. Yet today's smartphone technology and social media platforms offer oceans of information ripe for the taking.
To paraphrase Dale Carnegie, mastering verbal communication in business contexts is a powerful way to influence people and make friends. All the successful politicians, A-list entertainers, and entrepreneurs do it.
Social media marketing and engagement will continue to be a vital component for business branding, establishing individual credibility, and growing expert status. There are a number of simple techniques you can use to enhance your business profile, and thus make your activities appear more real to potential customers and subscribers.