How to engage your audience on social media

Brand managers running their organization’s Twitter and Facebook accounts should be trained in professional social media etiquette. Instead of taking a shot in the dark, consider this advice.

A version of this article originally was published on PR Daily in June 2016.

For an organization to find success online, brand managers must find a niche and cater to those consumers.

Often, a consistent and well-rounded social media presence is the special ingredient that helps a brand edge out its competition and build an audience.

Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are no longer just for sharing funny cat videos; they are leading platforms for large-scale advertising and marketing campaigns. When used effectively, they’re an outlet for consumers to voice their opinions and interact with top organizations.

People want to feel connected to the brands they use, and social media makes them more relatable and attainable for the average consumer. People are hungry for the next viral post or video to share with their friends, and the right online campaign can help any organization achieve that.

How to interact

Social media plans should not be an afterthought. Managing an organization’s accounts shouldn’t be delegated to an overworked employee who happens to have an iPhone and knows what “Throwback Thursday” means.

Success on social media relies on the manager’s ability to grasp and convey an organization’s message. To start, establish a consistent message across all your platforms; only then should you delegate responsibilities.

What language to use

Every brand manager should be confident in his or her “brand’s language.”

Terms or wording that a manager uses should remain consistent on all channels. Consumers will come to expect the same voice and nomenclature no matter which platform they visit.

RELATED: Get the scoop on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram developments at Facebook headquarters.

When you’re posting content, the material should be carefully planned and professionally executed. Your content should do more than just fill the void and say, “Look at me!” Your posts must always align with your overall message and engage your followers in diverse ways.

Content selection

Selecting what to post on each platform or channel is much more complicated than it might seem. Agencies should adopt approaches such as optimum posting times, use of hashtags and interacting with trending content.

When it comes to representing your brand, take your social media presence seriously. When appropriate, it’s OK to insert some of your personality into your strategy, but remember that it’s your company’s channel—not your own.

Emily Potts is Heron Agency’s publicist. A version of this article originally appeared on Heron’s blog.

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