Social Media: Build Your Community- Then Promote

Social Media Community We have said it before… We will say it again. You should be using social media for business. It is an information hub and a method of open communication with your audience. It is a conversation platform and very important for not only your online presence, but your credibility, branding, SEO and marketing efforts.

So what now? Do you open the accounts and start blasting off all of the great in-store specials? All the special promotions and fantastic things you are offering? Do you start pushing events and upcoming sales?

NO. No you do not. That will most likely turn followers away.

As mentioned earlier- social media is a conversation. When you have a real-life conversation, do you immediately start with why you are so wonderful and why people should like you? Probably not. You want to provide mutually beneficial conversation first- THEN- once you are comfortable with that person, you can start sharing more intimate details of all the great things happening in your life. Take that same model and apply it to your social media conversation.

We always tell our clients to first build your community. Work on sharing on-brand and relevant information. It doesn’t have to be created by you! You can share industry leader links as well as your blog. Work on accumulating fans by using trending hashtags so that your message gets filtered into larger audience pools. Build your fans/followers first and foremost. It may seem like you are treading water for a month or so but it will work in the end. DO NOT buy followers- you want quality not quantity and not for nothing? Social media platforms are hip to these scammers and if they find out you bought your fans? They could limit your pages. Not good.

One you have a decent following THEN you can start to promote! Now you have people who will see your efforts- who know that you are knowledgeable in your field and trust that what you are sharing can be valuable to them. Make sure that your efforts fall into am 80/20 percentile though… 80% helpful links, tips and tricks, quotes, pictures- and 20% promotion. We’ve found that to be a positive balance as long as you are keeping track of your social media insights and are posting the right information at the right times.

You can do social media! But if you need help? We are here to help!

(Did that fall into the 80/20 promotion? We think so!) 

Email Etiquette 101- Writing for Business

How to write a professional email.

Not everyone can articulate themselves well through written work- I know this mainly because of email communication. I’ve read some emails that led me to believe that the person behind the computer was either extremely upset (when they weren’t), uninterested in our conversation or that their account had been hacked by a five year old playing a mean joke on me… Yes, they were that difficult to read.

Email communication is a conversation through writing. When used for business it should be polite, easy to understand and to the point. There are certain rules to obey to avoid your email being sent unprofessionally and received in the wrong way.

Here are my top email etiquette ‘rules’:

1.  Include a formal salutation in the initial email

Hello, hi, or even just the recipient’s name will do. Sending an email without saying hello to the person you are sending it to may come across as lazy and/or indifferent. The following emails in the conversation thread don’t have to have a salutation (I always include one but it isn’t a must). You wouldn’t just walk up to someone without them seeing you coming and start talking without saying hi, would you? Maybe you would… but try not to in email.

2.  Include an appropriate subject line

This will help the recipient prioritize their incoming emails and also help them search for your email thread in the future.

3.  Don’t type in all caps

This is read as though you are YELLING. No one likes to be yelled at so your message won’t be received well.

4.  Keep your email short and to the point

This is to benefit both the sender and receiver. The sender isn’t stuck writing for an hour and the reader isn’t stuck reading for an hour. If you feel that your email is getting lengthy- take that as a sign that you should set up a meeting or conference call.

5.  Font

Please use an easy to read font in a dark colour and please don’t use a size 8 or 20. Reading a bright red email in Chopin Script sized 18 is not the way anyone wants to start their day.

6.  Remember your audience

 Write your emails for the person receiving them. Maybe you write “ur” instead of your or use abbreviations such as “LOL” or “BRB” when you write with friends but keep your emails as professional as you can when you’re representing your business. I would even avoid the famous smiley face emoticon until you have established a relationship with the receiver and you are on friendly terms. 🙂

7.  Say please and thank you

Pretty basic stuff, but it can be lost in verbal to written translation.

8.  Proofread your email

I have a trick when it comes to writing emails. I write them in Word and then I copy and paste it into an email. I do this for a couple reasons:

  • My spelling is correct (note that your grammar still may not be so proofread anyway)
  • If I am upset or irritated this allows me to re-read and re-word the email without accidentally pressing send and throwing all of my email etiquette rules out the window

Email communication is an important part of your daily business interactions- treat it as such and your impression on the receiver should be a pleasant one.

Do you have an email pet peeve? Please share it in the comment section below!

Thanks,

Crystal Lengua