Let social media do good work for you
By Cindy Woudenberg

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With social media, technology is essential in driving your business forward. To optimize usage of the available current technology, here are some key items to consider when boosting how your online presence works:

INDUSTRY PULSE

How often does your organization post on social media?
  • 1. Every day
  • 2. Once a week
  • 3. Once a month
  • 4. Never

Images
Whether the cover photo of your Facebook page, your Google Plus icon, your LinkedIn photo or whatever other images you use, be sure to use high-quality images. Pictures are worth a thousand words, and what you put out there contributes to the perception of your company. Brand your pages with great cover photos and remember to frequently change your images to increase visibility in social media news feeds. Photos and videos are also a great way to generate shares and comments.

About
It can be tedious and repetitive to you, but to your clients and customers, having complete profile information establishes a thorough and polished online presence. Be sure to fill out all of the "about" sections completely and include keywords in your descriptions to increase site traffic.

Fans and followers
Fans and followers aren't just for sports teams anymore. Did you know that having more than 1,000 fans and followers can significantly increase site traffic? To build your fan base, don't be afraid to ask for followers and shares. You can also run special campaigns, ads and contests to help you obtain a larger network of interest. Just make sure to follow the rules for contests and ads for each platform.

Personalize
It's important to personalize your profiles. To do this, link branded pages to your personal page or build a separate "persona page" to link out to. This not only adds traffic but also encourages relationships to form.

Share
Sharing is caring in the social media realm. Be sure to add "like" boxes and available social share buttons to all pages of your website.

Posting
You should aim to use social media at least three times a week. If possible, it's even better if you can post multiple times a day, throughout the day. This adds to building audience rapport and enables more client/customer information to be delivered — and it also adds to your company's online visibility. If you are posting blogs, try to post at least once a week using keywords in the title and content.

Consistency
When content posting, it's crucial to use a consistent strategy. This encompasses engaging your audience with open-ended questions, polls and surveys, delivering information and events, initiating calls to action or offering specials and discounts, citing customer testimonials or shout-outs to vendors and customers. The list goes on and on with possibilities, but the main takeaway is be consistence in voice and message through any information you deliver. You want to echo your brand.

Promote
To encourage and build attendance, promote events or products using the available social media tools. You can leverage hype by posting critical content that displays value to your audience.

The amount of people using social media is on the rise, and it's going to continue to climb. It's essential to engage with these communities when building and maintaining connections for your business online. Use the above list to help create a thoughtful and intentional presence in today's marketplace.

Cindy Woudenberg is the principal and founder of LuCorp Marketing, an Internet marketing agency, and an adjunct business professor at Arizona Christian University. She has degrees in business and science, and holds certifications in search engine optimization and social media from various associations.