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Having a social media engagement strategy can mean the difference between seeing significant results from your social media efforts or failing to gain any traction on social media despite posting on a regular basis. There are several reasons engagement is so important on social media. One is that it allows you to stand out above the noise.

Social media platforms can be very busy, and unless you have ways to actively engage with your audience, it’s easy for your content to get lost. Another reason engagement is so important is it’s a good way to measure what’s working on your social media channels, as well as what’s falling flat.

Because there’s a lot to gain from making engagement a priority, we want to cover five creative social media engagement ideas that you can start using:

Ask Questions (with a Twist)

One of the most common social media engagement techniques is asking questions. Since this technique is so widespread, people may not pay attention if a question is really basic. That’s why we recommend putting a twist on this strategy. Whether that means asking a funny or multiple-choice question, the key is to post questions that your audience actually wants to answer.

Curate Content and Tag Relevant People

Content curation has become a popular social media marketing strategy in recent years. One of the elements that determines the effectiveness of curating content is involving the original sources. Whether you’re sharing a post or writing your own curated post, be sure to tag everyone that you mention. This will put your curated content on their radar. And as long as what you created is good, chances are many of the people you tag will share it.

Encourage User-Generated Content

Coming up with new content all the time can be a significant challenge. That’s why user-generated content (UGC) is so great. Not only is this type of content produced by fans and customers for you, but it has a level of authenticity that’s really appealing. So be sure to actively ask your social followings to share this type of content with you.

Be Current

Social media is all about conversation, which is why jumping into current events with your own unique angle can be a great way to get people engaged. Just make sure that the events you engage about make sense in the context of your brand.

Run the Right Kind of Contests

Like questions, contests are so widely used that they may be ignored if they’re too generic. That’s why it’s worth taking the time to come up with a contest idea that will be truly fun and engaging for your audience.

If you’re looking for the best way to track your engagement as you put the different strategies we covered above into action, learn more about how our social media engagement dashboard can help.

Send Social Media makes it easy to import and schedule multiple social media updates at once. The type of message you choose to import could be anything like your regular Tweets or your daily Facebook status updates.

A CSV file is a simple text format commonly used for database tables. Each record in a table is one line of text with each value separated by a comma with no space. Learn how to schedule Multiple Social Media Updates in bulk with Send Social Media:

Note: While most text editors, office applications, and database management systems support CSV format, they may not export correct character renderings in a CSV. For instance, depending on a system’s regional settings, Microsoft Excel may use a semicolon as a separator instead of a comma. Be sure to check your application’s defaults before exporting to CSV format. Be sure to use the following date format for the SendDate column: yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm. E.g. 2012-02-24 23:59 for your CSV file.

You can follow the steps below to import the messages using Send Social Media’s message importer:

1) Click on Add/Edit Services > Import.

2) Under CSV importers, click “Add” next to Message Importer.

3) Click “Browse” and select your CSV file.

4) Note that Send Social Media accepts a specific CSV file format as seen below. The column headers “Message”, “Subject” and “SendDate” must be included.

 

5) Select the group that you want these messages to be distributed to. A group can consist of multiple social network profiles, email address, blogs etc.

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Many nonprofits have discovered that social media is an ideal way to connect and engage with people who are passionate about what the organization does. If your nonprofit is currently using social media but you’re not sure how effective your strategy is, learning about which social media analytics for nonprofits matter most will allow you to properly analyze your current strategy and make the right adjustments going forward. So to help you get started, here are the five metrics you need to know about:

Conversions

A common misconception about conversions is if a nonprofit isn’t directly selling anything on their website, this metric isn’t relevant. However, since the term “conversions” can refer to anything from enlisting volunteers to getting someone to send a message to their friends, this is actually the most important type of social media analytics for nonprofits. This metric allows you to clearly see how many social media users who visit your website take one or more of the actions that you want.

Overall Traffic

One thing that’s very important to understand about social media analytics is it takes some time to build up a strong following. And in most cases, the direct social traffic to your website will follow the same gradual growth curve. So what you want to keep an eye out for are any sudden spikes or drops in gradual traffic. If you see one, you’ll want to dig into your data to see what caused it. Then this will help you understand what to do more of or avoid in the future.

Sentiment

Even though your organization may not need to provide direct customer support, it’s still helpful to understand whether the majority of social media conversations about your nonprofit are positive or negative. This can be especially useful for understanding if you’re going down the right path with a new initiative.

Engagement

Since it can take time to convert a social media user into someone who donates or does something else for your organization, it’s easy to see why engagement is a key part of effective social media analytics for nonprofits. By continuously focusing on increasing social media engagement, you’ll ultimately increase your conversion rate. Measuring engagement can also be helpful for determining what kind of content does best on specific social networks.

Followers

The reason this metric is last on the list is while it can have value, it’s a metric that many nonprofits emphasize too much. One of the most common social media mistakes that nonprofits make is only focusing on how many followers they’ve accumulated. If a social media profile has a lot of followers but very few of them are actually engaging on a regular basis, it’s going to be hard to drive meaningful results. So while it’s worth keeping an eye on the number of people following your organization, focusing most of your attention on the other metrics will help you the most.

Even though this may seem like a lot of information to collect and maintain, our social media analytics dashboard can make it easy to stay on top of the metrics that matter most for your nonprofit organization.

Tips for Creating a Successful Social Media Automation Strategy

Consistency is one of the most important elements for a business to find success with social media marketing. Far too many businesses give up on social media channels before they have a chance to gain real traction. One reason that it’s so common for businesses to give up is they feel like these activities are taking up too much time and not delivering enough returns. Plenty of businesses simply don’t have the team resources needed to stay on top of social media on a daily basis.

If these kinds of issues sound familiar, your business is in the perfect position to harness the power of social media automation. When done correctly, this type of automation can keep your social media efforts running on a consistent schedule. It will also free you and any members of your team up to actually have time for engaging with people through social media. So if you want to get on top of social media marketing for your business and avoid feeling like you’re stuck on a hamster wheel, here are a few tips for getting started with automation:

Keep It Human
While the right social media automation tools will allow you to do more in less time, that doesn’t mean you want the content you share to seem impersonal. Businesses that aren’t afraid to show the true personalities of their brands and team members always do their best on social.

Tailor Content to Different Social Channels
A common mistake that businesses of all sizes make is taking the exact same content and sharing it across all of their social media profiles. The reason this is a mistake is every social network has its own culture. So if you share the exact same content with duplicate descriptions across all your social profiles, it’s not going to resonate nearly as well. Taking time to customize what you’re sharing to different social channels can make a big difference in how well it performs.

Be a Curator
Another mistake many businesses make is only sharing their own content. By going beyond this scope and curating a wide range of content your followers will find interesting, you’ll be able to make your profiles much more engaging.

Regularly Review Stats
The best way to know what kind of content to share more of and what to avoid is to review your performance stats on a regular basis. Having this information will guide the focus of your social media automation strategy.

If you’re looking for the simplest way to stay on top of your company’s social media efforts, be sure to take a look at the Send Social Media Dashboard 7-day trial!

Social media has become an integral part of the work that many agencies do. One of the challenges that agencies often face as they grow is being able to keep up with posting for all clients across multiple platforms. Because this is something that’s obviously too time-consuming to manage manually and is actually too demanding for many social media tools, it’s vital to find a tool that’s built for the specific needs of an agency. Here are the types of features that are essential for a social media management tool used by agencies:

Bulk Scheduling

Not having this feature is a deal breaker. When you want to work on social media content for a client, it’s important for a member of your team to be able to sit down and fill up a queue with lots of posts. Not only is this essential for the sake of efficiency, but it’s also very important for being able to take a strategic approach to social media posting. By choosing a tool that makes it a breeze to queue up plenty of posts, an agency will be able to keep the social profiles active for all its clients without feeling constantly overwhelmed.

Email Integration

Although social media has become an absolutely essential part of online marketing, it hasn’t eliminated email. In fact, as more activity has moved out of people’s inboxes, being able to communicate through this channel is arguably more valuable than ever. That’s why the best agencies know that integrating email into the marketing efforts for their clients is a must. With the right tool, you can easily manage this type of activity. Having this ability is great for using social media as a lead generation tool and then converting those leads into customers.

Ability to Respond

Regardless of the specific platform, social media activity is driven by engagement. If people try to communicate with a profile and never get a response, they’re going to lose interest. Since many agencies handle this type of interaction for their clients, having a tool that pulls all messages into one location and then makes it easy to respond is incredibly useful.

Detailed Analytics

Without analytics, it’s very difficult to know what’s working and what isn’t working as well. With a social media management tool that offers detailed analytics, you’ll be able to use this data for the agency, as well as easily share it with clients on a regular basis.

If you want a social media management tool that you can count on to handle all of your agency’s daily needs, be sure to take a product tour of Send Social Media.

How Agencies Can Empower Clients’ Brands Through Social Listening

When Facebook first launched over a decade ago, it was all about helping college students connect with each other. Then as the platform grew, people outside of college campuses were allowed to join. This transformed the platform into a place where friends and families could interact with each other. Eventually, Facebook allowed large companies to establish a presence on the platform. This was later expanded to businesses of all sizes. If you look at the other major social platforms, most have followed a similar strategy of initially focusing on individuals and then bringing in businesses.

When businesses first got on board with social media, a large percentage made the mistake of only using these platforms as a means for self-promotion. Since that strategy is almost always doomed to fail, businesses moved on to looking for a better way to engage with social media users.

The Importance of Listening First

The search for a better approach to social engagement led many businesses to the same conclusion. That conclusion is listening needs to come first. Because social media is all about conversations, listening is a must for finding opportunities to engage in an authentic and meaningful way. Although this approach may initially seem backwards to the way businesses normally approach marketing, those that stick to this method realize it’s actually very powerful. Businesses can establish a strong connection by taking the time to understand customers and then letting them know the business understands what they’re saying.

How Agencies Can Help Clients with Social Listening

If you run an agency that does social media marketing for clients, they may want you to take the lead on social listening. And in many cases, a client may not fully understand the value of this type of activity until you’re able to show them real examples and successful outcomes.

In the past, social listening across multiple platforms could be quite challenging for a single brand, let alone multiple client brands. But thanks to Send Social Media, you can pull all this information into a centralized dashboard. This efficiency means you’ll be able to make the most of monitoring client brands and engaging in social listening.

Thanks to the features of Send Social Media, it’s possible to take full advantage of activities like listening to industry conversations to get a better sense of your client’s niche, identifying customer pain points to create better content, and finding potential brand advocates for your client. Being able to easily manage these kinds of activities will have a noticeable impact on clients’ customer’s experiences and brand images, which in turn will allow your agency to charge a premium for the value you’re delivering. If you’re looking for the simplest way to stay on top of your company’s social media efforts, be sure to take a look at the Send Social Media Dashboard 7-day trial!

Social media has become an essential part of how businesses can market themselves online. Although there are multiple social media networks with hundreds of millions of users, many businesses still struggle to find traction with their social media efforts.

One of the reasons social media remains a challenge for so many businesses is they don’t have clear social media objectives. While there’s something to be said for getting started with social media by diving right in, that approach is unlikely to move the needle for a business of any size.

If you want your business to get real results from social media, you need a plan. That’s where social media objectives come into the picture. To help you get started on the right path, we’re going to cover the five things you should evaluate when coming up with these objectives for your business:

1. Start with a Hypothesis

Even though you may be new to using social media for your business, you still know the type of people you’re trying to reach. Based on that knowledge, you can make a hypothesis about which social network is going to be the best fit for your business. Starting with this type of focus will help you make more progress in less time.

2. Know Your KPI

KPI stands for key performance indicator. There are many KPIs related to social media. Followers, shares, clicks and signups are a few of the most common. Since there are many different options, you need to choose the one that matters most to your business. Keep in mind that your primary KPI can change over time. For example, followers may be your KPI for an early campaign, and then you may shift your effort to clicks in the future.

3. Have a Goal

After you’ve identified your KPI, you will want to set a specific goal. The goal you set should be clear and have a specific timeline. It’s generally best to set a goal that’s ambitious but still within reach.

4. Execute, Measure and Analyze

Once all your objectives are defined, you can begin taking action. You will also want to have specific intervals in place to measure how your KPI is progressing in regards to the goal you set for it.

5. Adjust As Needed

While objectives provide a path to follow, they’re not something that’s set in stone. Based on the information you collect, you will want to make adjustments. Gradually improving your social media efforts over time is exactly how you can get to the point of social media having a noticeable impact on your business.

From managing to measuring, learn more about how Send Social Media can help make the pursuit of social media objectives for small business successful.

Branding is a very broad topic. For some people, visual design is the first thing that comes to mind.

Here is Best Practices for Visually Building Your Brand on Social Media

For others, they may view branding with a slightly negative connotation and believe it’s too abstract. While those are all valid thoughts, the right type of branding can be very important for a business. When done correctly, branding helps to define a small business and gives people a reason to connect with it.

One of the ways to move away from the abstractness sometimes associated with branding and focus more on what it can actually do for your business is to look at its most important elements. That’s why we want to cover the essential ingredients to build a brand for your small business:

What’s Your Purpose?

Building a brand starts with defining why your business exists. On the surface, this may seem like a simple question to answer. But as you dig into it, you’ll likely notice that it’s surprisingly complex. Although it can take some time to get a clear and concise answer to this question, doing so will create the foundation for the rest of your branding efforts.

Staying Consistent

A brand is something that makes a promise. The specific promise will vary from one business to the next. Regardless of the specific promise your business makes with its brand, what’s extremely important is to stay consistent with that promise. In terms of how to do that, it’s something that needs to happen at every level of your business. From how you provide customer service to the visual elements you use across the social media for your business, staying consistent will build the type of trust that your business needs in order to grow and thrive.

Involving Employees

Since purpose and consistency are key ingredients of a small business brand, it’s easy to understand why branding isn’t an activity that exists in a silo. For a brand to really mean something, every member of an organization needs to be involved. Another benefit of getting every employee fully on board with your brand is they will help you spread its message.

Building Loyalty

Employees aren’t the only ones who can spread the message of your brand. If you identify your purpose and create an organization where everyone consistently shares that message, you’ll gain loyal customers. These customers will act as evangelists for your brand and help grow it to levels via channels like word of mouth that you could have never done on your own.

Social media continues to be a very important part of building a small business brand. While staying on top of social media can seem quite challenging at times, there are ways to make it easier. Learn more about Send Social Media and how our tool will help streamline your social media efforts.

Although social media usage and influence only continues to increase, plenty of businesses still struggle to stay on top of their social channels. Even after a business clears the initial challenges that often come up when getting started with social, it’s common to feel overwhelmed by how much there is to do. If you want your business to take advantage of everything social media has to offer but worry that you simply don’t have the resources to do so, we want to share four different ways social media automation can help you out:

Efficiently Handling a Large Number of Responses

As you build more momentum for your business through social media, the number of people who interact with your profiles will increase. While this is a good problem to have, it’s still a problem. The last thing you want to do is make potential customers feel ignored or miss a very important message. Since trying to manually go through a large number of responses across multiple platforms can take a lot of time, the ability to aggregate all responses into a single dashboard through social media automation is a huge help.

Identifying the Best Content to Share

There’s an incredible amount of content on the Internet. However, that doesn’t make it any easier to know what you should share through your social profiles. The good news is social media automation can make this decision easier. By automatically collecting analytics about how every post performs, you’ll be able to gain a better understanding of what you should be posting. You can also use an integration like RSS to keep your feed interesting. And to top things off, automation gives you the ability to schedule as many posts as you want to share in advance.

Using Social Media for Customer Service

Many of the features that you’ll find on any of the major social media platforms make them ideal for providing customer service. The only downside is if you start getting too many customer service requests, it can overwhelm your current resources and cause your business to drop the ball. The good news is social media automation can solve this dilemma. By bringing all customer service issues into a single location and making it very easy to reply, your business will be able to keep up with this task regardless of the volume you receive.

Engaging with Followers in a Meaningful Way

Engagement is a huge part of social media. So how can you take your interactions with followers beyond quick comments? A great option that’s possible with the help of social media automation is group messaging and/or email marketing. These approaches will allow you to communicate in more depth with your followers.

If you want to overcome common marketing challenges by taking advantage of social media automation, get started today with a free 30-day trial of the Send Social Media Dashboard.

Social media has become an integral part of the work that many agencies do. One of the challenges that agencies often face as they grow is being able to keep up with posting for all clients across multiple platforms. Because this is something that’s obviously too time-consuming to manage manually and is actually too demanding for many social media tools, it’s vital to find a tool that’s built for the specific needs of an agency. Here are the types of features that are essential for a social media management tool used by agencies:

Bulk Scheduling

Not having this feature is a deal breaker. When you want to work on social media content for a client, it’s important for a member of your team to be able to sit down and fill up a queue with lots of posts. Not only is this essential for the sake of efficiency, but it’s also very important for being able to take a strategic approach to social media posting. By choosing a tool that makes it a breeze to queue up plenty of posts, an agency will be able to keep the social profiles active for all its clients without feeling constantly overwhelmed.

Email Integration

Although social media has become an absolutely essential part of online marketing, it hasn’t eliminated email. In fact, as more activity has moved out of people’s inboxes, being able to communicate through this channel is arguably more valuable than ever. That’s why the best agencies know that integrating email into the marketing efforts for their clients is a must. With the right tool, you can easily manage this type of activity. Having this ability is great for using social media as a lead generation tool and then converting those leads into customers.

Ability to Respond

Regardless of the specific platform, social media activity is driven by engagement. If people try to communicate with a profile and never get a response, they’re going to lose interest. Since many agencies handle this type of interaction for their clients, having a tool that pulls all messages into one location and then makes it easy to respond is incredibly useful.

Detailed Analytics

Without analytics, it’s very difficult to know what’s working and what isn’t working as well. With a social media management tool that offers detailed analytics, you’ll be able to use this data for the agency, as well as easily share it with clients on a regular basis.

If you want a social media management tool that you can count on to handle all of your agency’s daily needs, be sure to take a product tour of Send Social Media.

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