This is the second post in a two-part series. To read Part One, click here.
Last week, we talked about how to incorporate social media into marketing and communications strategies. As a reminder, these strategies can be divided into six main categories:
- Executive Visibility
- Media Relations
- Content Marketing
- Staff & Membership Morale
Last week, we outlined a few ways in which you can incorporate social media into executive visibility, media relations, and content marketing. This week, we will be covering using social media for events, recruitment, and staff & membership morale.
Whether you’re hosting an event or attending a conference, there are always opportunities to market your business. If you know who will be attending the event and would like to engage with those attendees, create Twitter lists to organize your targets. This makes it easier to follow what these people are saying and to start a dialogue with them over social media. If you know some of the content for the event ahead of time, schedule social media posts to alleviate the pressure of posting during the event. Make sure to create or use hashtags for the event so that your posts will show up when others search the event or hashtag.
Attracting and retaining the right talent can be a challenge for small business owners. We often think of social media as a way to recruit clients, but it can also be used as a tool for attracting employees. Many potential employees will check out a company’s social media channels, not just the company website. Post pictures of your office brownbag to show your commitment to professional development. Share posts about the community day of service in which your staff participated to demonstrate your commitment to social responsibility. Retweet an employee’s message about enjoying happy hour to show that your team has fun working together. All of these tactics can help potential employees see the benefits of working at your business.
Many small businesses will tell you that, when their staff are happy, they are more productive and stay at the organization longer. The same can be said for member or partner relationships. Social media is a great way to acknowledge staff, members, and even customers. Use Facebook to highlight mini-bios of staff on their work anniversaries and talk about why you appreciate having them at your organization. Tag and thank members when they renew their membership. Give a shout-out on Twitter to a partner organization when they win an award or a new contract. Making people feel appreciated and valued will make them more loyal to your small business.
Social media is a critical tool for marketing and business growth. We shouldn’t think of it as a standalone tactic, though, but rather as an integrated tool for supporting all other marketing and communications efforts.