Five tips for building a community through social media.
Updated: Apr 15
When jumping into social media for your business, it can be easy to make it all about you and your product - or taking a ‘sell’ approach, as we like to call it. And we totally understand! After all, you are the expert on your product - which is the reason your business came to be in the first place. However, focusing too much on you can actually be detrimental to your reputation. When people consume on social media, it’s all about them. They want content that will relate to their roles in life, what they spend time doing and the things that they’re interested in.
So while you’re trying to grow your brand on social media, building a community is not only a great opportunity to promote your products, but also to create a deeper connection around your business’s personality, voice and values. We’ve put together five tips on building a virtual community to get you started.
1. Approach them as HUMANS.
Your audience is made up of people - as in, humans. So treat them like it! People are interested in more than just your product. People are professionals and playful, readers and movie watchers, husbands and wives and parents. All of these things and so much more. So instead of looking at your followers as a dollar to be made, look at them as the well-rounded, dynamic people that they are. Put some thought into it. And once you’ve done that, talk to them about it! Ask them about their hobbies and interests. Look for some recommendations on what to watch and places to go and food to try. Taking this approach will show that you are invested in them, and not just their money.
2. Make it easy for them.
Don’t overcomplicate it! And don’t make them work any harder than necessary to interact with your content. Use the engagement stickers for Instagram stories. Try some polls on LinkedIn. Play around with different features and see what resonates.
3. Show up for your people!
Whether that’s virtually or in-person, show up for your people. Interact with them! Take the time to connect with them! Find ways to open up to them that you know they’ll appreciate! This could be something simple like replying to comments, or something a little bit more complex like planning an event. These are the people that are showing up for you daily, so showing that you’re willing to do the same in return will go a long way in continuing to connect with people.
4. Experiment with your content.
You know that old saying, “If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it”? Well we like to say, “Find what’s working and then try some more stuff.” It’s okay to acknowledge what’s working - and by all means, don’t throw that out the window. But we also encourage you to keep experimenting. With the speed at which social media moves, it can be easy to fall behind if you get complacent with “what’s working”. And who knows, one of your experimental posts may just go viral or be the start of a new trend.
5. Be genuine.
At the end of the day, it all comes down to being genuine. In this day and age, consumers are getting smarter. They are becoming more and more in-tune with whether a company’s actions are genuine or just for the dough. And honestly, being genuine is simply easier than trying to be or create something that doesn’t align well with you or your brand. When you’re being genuine about the content you’re putting out and the way you interact with people, you can’t go wrong.
Just remember through all of this that social media takes time. For most people, the reality is not gaining 10,000 followers overnight or going viral once and finding never-ending success. Oftentimes it’s a slow burn, but that slow burn is what will bring you lasting growth. So don’t get discouraged after just a month. Stick with it and we know you’ll start to see the results you’re after. You got this!