Today, propertyadguru.com welcomes a guest post from Richard Fellner, editorial consultant for the recently launched social media management tool, Sobox. Sobox was created by propertyadguru.com owner Classified Ad Ventures.
Richard has 25 years experience in the online marketing world, so he understands the ins and outs of online content, SEO and New Media. Here, he shares one strategy for social media success:
One of the most common mistakes that many businesses make when diving into Social Media is to treat their pages and platforms as a monologue tool; i.e. posting one-sided articles with no reader interaction. By using this “megaphone” mentality, there is no indication whether the content is being read, whether the people who DO read it find any value, or if it incites any action. It thus undermines the real value of Social Media, and represents many lost opportunities.
Dialogues are the next step in the Social Media chain, and are currently the norm for most businesses and individuals. In a dialogue, you interact with your fans/followers on a one-to-one or even a one-to-many basis. You may post an interesting article or Tweet, read your followers’ responses, and then continue the conversation with your own timely response or follow-up questions. The key here is to use each interaction as an opportunity to develop a stronger, long-term relationship. Dialogues are a powerful tool, and they form a solid foundation for any Social Media strategy.
Truly savvy businesses, on the other hand, are now beginning to treat Social Media as a Multilogue, which is a relatively new term defined as a “Many-to-Many” conversation. Similar to a moderated forum, a Multilogue unleashes the real potential of Social Media, and creates multiple opportunities.
To understand a Multilogue, first imagine a room full of people at, say, a town hall meeting. A question may be put to the group, and someone may stand up and share their viewpoint. Someone else may then build on that idea, add their own viewpoint, ask additional questions, etc. Soon, there are multiple conversations popping up, with related topics being discussed, and the room begins to buzz.
While multiple concurrent conversations can sometimes lead to chaos in a physical setting, the beauty of a Social Media setting is that every statement or question is displayed on the screen – for everyone to read. More importantly, however, the entire conversations can be shared with other people or even entire groups in real time. This generates more questions, ideas and general excitement.
Sound familiar? In essence, the theory is the basis of Viral Marketing – the most powerful form of marketing there is. And it can all start with a single Tweet or Facebook post.
So how can you unleash the power of the Multilogue into your own Social Media project? First, make sure that everyone knows about your Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, etc. Add links to your pages in your email signature, on your website, your brochures and flyers, your display signage, on your shopfront window, etc.
Next, ask plenty of questions within your pages and tweets. People love to share their views. Ask for opinions on things like interest rates, the best neighbourhoods for school-age children, sea-change vs tree-change, or what the biggest obstacle for first home buyers. Don’t be afraid to cover controversial topics (e.g. Sydney vs Melbourne) as those can generate great interest and interactions. Maybe you could try a “Name the Neighbourhood” competition: post a photo of a house or famous landmark, give a clue or two, offer a small prize and see who can guess the neighbourhood or region. It may even be a photo of a house you’re selling, which may not only send traffic to your website or listings page (as people try to match the picture), but could also give the house some extra exposure for an open house or auction.
As people respond to your posts, follow up immediately with your own posts. The key is to keep the conversations interesting, fresh and constantly moving. As they say: Nothing draws a crowd like a crowd.
By regularly interacting with your followers — and keeping your brand at top of mind — you’ll boost your Social Media exposure, and maybe even have some fun along the way.