When I was a little girl, my grandmother would say, “Allison, in order to have friends, you have to be a friend. You can’t just expect everyone to think you are amazing; you have to show them.”
My grandmother was a savvy woman, living over 100 years on this planet and loving every moment; my heart truly broke when she left it. I am confident she would have been on social media given the chance and she probably could have been an influencer at that, making all of us smile with each post.
Even though she has been gone for almost seven years, her wisdom still helps me in various moments of my life; so it was no surprise that last week in a client meeting, her words rolled off my tongue: “In order to have friends you have to be a friend, even on Facebook.”
It is true and quite possibly one of the hardest, most time-consuming tasks of social media marketing. Still, if you want to maximize your efforts on any social platform, you need an engagement strategy.
Right now, you are probably thinking to yourself, “I know, but I have no idea how to begin or engage correctly.” I would wager a guess that the following questions are racing through your mind: How do I speak to someone I haven’t “met” before? Or ensure my brand looks credible, strong and genuine? If I say the wrong thing, everyone will see it.
These are just a few of the doubts that may run through your head, creating insecurity before you even hit the post button, correct?
We have all been here: beads of sweat rolling off our forehead, short breaths of uncertainty, reading our words over and over to ensure we don’t look foolish, get yelled at by our managers, or worse (insert your own nightmare here).
The first thing to do when these doubts appear is to breathe.
I am not joking; let’s take a minute to practice it right now. Inhale…hold for three seconds…exhale.
OK, now the one thing you need to remember is that this is social media marketing; while it is very important and very serious, it also can and should be fun.
Yes, I said fun. In my opinion, engagements are where you can have the most fun.
Compliment your competitor (if you are on good terms), wish someone a happy birthday or anniversary, share a post that resonates with “you” or your company. Engagements are time-consuming, but no more so than creating posts. Remember, you need to be brand-appropriate — leave the emojis out (unless that works for your brand), leave the hot topics behind (unless you are a politician), no swearing, no arrogant gloating, check your grammar and remember to breathe.
Here are a few more tips on how to engage like a pro across all platforms.
- Remain genuine: Everyone can tell if you are not genuine; it will look different and will stand out from other comments and organic content like a red flag waving in the wind.
- Keep it simple: This is not the time to write a novel or share all of your feelings at once. Keep it short, concise and straightforward.
- Be intentional: Do you have a presentation out to a client? Want to impress someone else you who may be watching and participating in the conversation? Do you have the chance to “meet” the decision-maker from a prospect on your list? Yes, this is social media, but it is also business.
In our fast-paced digital world, social platforms are not going anywhere. Remember: “If you want to have friends, you have to be a friend.”
About the Author
Allison Dollar is a Thinking Bigger Foundational Partner
Allison founded One Dragon, a marketing firm based in Overland Park, Kansas in 2016. After spending time with various sized organizations in the Kansas City area, she realized that there was a need for a marketing firm that focused on the small business owner. One Dragon is a full-service marketing firm that offers services such as paid advertising, social media marketing, content creation, and much more. She is a graduate of the University of Kansas, an active member of the South Kansas City Chamber and Leawood Chamber, and also volunteers regularly within various local charities. Sasha Dollar, her rescue dog, is currently the active CXO for One Dragon, ensuring all clients are satisfied with their services by making her rounds every so often to client meetings.
You can reach Allison at:
Phone: (913) 276-1230