One of the reasons that businesses often have a little hesitation about getting started with social media is because they feel like there’s so much to learn. While it’s true that it takes some time to get a really strong feel for the dynamics of different social networks, the good news is tools like our social media dashboard make it easier than ever to get a handle on things.
In addition to providing a tool that makes social media management across multiple platforms easier than ever before, we are committed to helping business owners learn everything they need to know to find social media success. That’s why we want to dive into a topic that we’ve been asked about on multiple occasions.
What is Community Management?
At this point, most businesses have at least come into contact with the term social media marketing. Although it’s a term that encompasses a lot, the core of this phrase refers to any type of marketing that’s done through a social media platform.
Another term that’s not quite as widespread but has continued to gain momentum is community management. Since social media makes it possible for businesses to build a type of community around themselves, it’s easy to understand why many people may view social media marketing and community management in the same light.
While it is true that these two terms are related, they don’t refer to the same activities. And since both activities do offer real value, it’s important for businesses to be aware of how to utilize each one.
Like social media marketing, the broad definition of community management is generally stated as “any attempts to cultivate, nurture, or engage with a given audience.” Because that definitely shares traits with social media marketing, let’s take a look at what separates the two.
Social Media Marketing vs. Community Managemen
The main difference between social media marketing and community management is they take place at different stages of building a relationship with a potential or current customer. With social media marketing, you’re focused on bringing people into contact with your business for the first or subsequent times.
When social media marketing is done well, some of the people you come in contact with will want to engage with your business even more. As you attract more people who feel this way, you’ll start to build a community. That’s where community management comes into play.
Instead of being focused on bringing new people into the sphere of your business, community management is all about strengthening an existing community. When community management is handled correctly, it can yield substantial benefits including customer retention, customer attraction and increased brand reputation.
While entire books have been written on the subject of community management, the main thing to keep in mind is the more opportunities you can create for people to engage, the more successful you’ll ultimately be with this online strategy.
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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
A social media dashboard can be an invaluable tool for businesses that are spending any amount of time utilizing social media platforms for building their brand and marketing to potential & existing customers. And because this type of tool can deliver so much value, there’s no shortage of companies who offer one. However, it’s important to understand that not all social media dashboards are equal in terms of what they can do for your business.
If your business is currently utilizing social media platforms but you aren’t using a dashboard to track social activity, here are the ten features you’ll want to make sure a dashboard has before signing up for it:
Simply put, if a dashboard is cumbersome or unintuitive, it’s going to hold your efforts back instead of propelling them forward.
A big part of why this type of dashboard is so useful is because it allows you to handle all your social media management from a central location. Since a dashboard is only as good as the platforms it allows you to manage, be sure to choose one that has enough resources behind it to support all of the platforms you currently utilize.
Different tasks require different information to be emphasized. A dashboard that allows you to customize what you see to your current task will save you a lot of time.
You’ll want to choose a dashboard that makes it dead simple to perform tasks like searching for something you previously shared.
You’ll want to choose a dashboard that makes it dead simple to perform tasks like searching for something you previously shared.
One of the biggest challenges with social media analytics is separating meaningful signals from noise. By choosing a dashboard that has features that help to do this type of work, you can avoid drowning in too much data.
Since social media is all about the now, it only makes sense that the social media monitoring provided by a dashboard should be capable of keeping up with conversations in real-time. And since you’re a busy person who simply can’t sit in front of the dashboard throughout the entire day, it’s important for it to have a notification system. This will ensure that even if an important conversation seems to come out of the blue, you will know about it right away.
A great dashboard shouldn’t just help you keep up with what’s being said about your business. It should also have features that make social media posting even easier. By choosing a dashboard that streamlines publishing, you can ensure that your brand is always part of relevant conversations.
The most successful business social media strategies are those that utilize every member of a business. A dashboard that allows you to give different levels of permission to various members of your team will save you a lot of time and stress.
Because social media is such a powerful tool for building an active online community, be sure that the dashboard you’re considering is going to be able to support that type of activity.
Social media isn’t something that should exist in a silo. That’s why features like automated reports that can be shared with clients, team members or email subscribers are an essential component of a great dashboard.
Now that you know exactly what makes a truly useful social media dashboard, you’ll be able to pick the one that’s right for your business, which in turn will allow you to take your social media branding and marketing efforts to the next level
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.
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.
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.
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 the 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 for your social media automation strategy.
If you want to use a tool that’s specifically designed to make social media automation as simple and effective as possible, take a look at all the great features of Send Social Media.
Every month, half a billion people get on Instagram. Because Instagram is a huge platform that will only continue to grow in 2017 and beyond, Send Social Media is very excited to announce that our Dashboard now supports Instagram.
By talking to businesses, marketers and agencies about the type of help they need with their Instagram marketing, we were able to build an excellent set of management and automation features. Since this addition to our platform presents an exciting new opportunity for social media marketing, we want to highlight the best Instagram features that are now available:
The Inbox of our Dashboard brings all your Instagram activity into one convenient location. This makes it super easy to engage with people who are interested in your content. From this single view, you can easily see activity on all of your posts and then expand conversations, repost content or reply to comments. Advanced features available with a single click include translating, archiving or assigning to a specific member of your team.
Schedule and Queue New Posts
When we talk to businesses about why they aren’t using Instagram or what issues they’re encountering as they try to scale their marketing on this platform, we often hear that trying to post on a consistent basis is a stumbling block. We help solve that problem by making it easy to schedule and queue new posts. Instead of needing to start from scratch every time you want to make a new post, you or a member of your team can log into your Send Social Media Dashboard and then get weeks or even months worth of posts ready to go!
Search for Relevant Posts
Whether you want to research competitors, are looking for new types of content to post on your own account or are trying to find where you can engage with other users, our powerful search tool makes this type of work a breeze. Simply type in what you’re looking for and our tool will help you find the most relevant results.
Organically Grow Your Following with Powerful Instagram Automation
While we’re proud of every feature we built into this new component of our Dashboard, we are most excited about our Instagram Automation features. These features are specifically designed to turbocharge your growth on Instagram.
As you can see from the screenshot above, our tool allows you to automatically like other photos with a specific hashtag. You can choose how many photos to like each time, along with how long to wait between likes. You also have the ability to automatically follow other users and/or unfollow those who don’t follow back.
If you’re an existing Send Social Media customer and have any questions about our new Instagram features, don’t hesitate to contact us. And if you’re ready to see for yourself why so many businesses, marketers and agencies use our social media management dashboard, be sure to check out our free demo or 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:
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.
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.
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.
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’ customers experiences and brand images, which in turn will allow your agency to charge a premium for the value you’re delivering.