Social media is becoming an increasingly popular resource for users and an effective tool for public relations and marketing professionals. Social media activity is free (or relatively low cost), quick, effective and measurable, and it is a perfect solution for many communications challenges. Unfortunately, social media often isn’t viewed as an essential part of communications strategies, which results in bland, inconsistent and unmonitored accounts. Here are five ways to optimize your social media accounts, so you can better communicate with your target audiences:

  1. Be Consistent

When trying to convey messaging and promote your brand through social media channels, consistency is key. Users should automatically be able to connect your social media page to your brand and to any other social media accounts. Consistency across social media platforms will reinforce your brand’s identity and reduce confusion among users. Here are some quick tips to increase consistency across your social media platforms:

  • Use the same profile photo across platforms
  • Set the same handle across platforms
  • Include messaging from your brand’s website in your regular social media lineup
  • Determine your preferred posting frequency and keep it regular
  1. Be Informative

Focus on providing valuable information to your audience. More and more users are using social media accounts as their main resource when researching brands and making purchasing decisions. On platforms such as Facebook, fill in all fields in the about section to make it easy for users to retrieve information about your organization. Take things a step further and incorporate an SEO strategy into your social media accounts. Figure out what popular searches align with your brand and include keywords in your profile description to help users connect with your brand. In addition to providing information about your organization, use your accounts to provide valuable industry information.

  1. Stay Organized

Using a social media calendar can streamline your posting process. Mapping out social media posts weeks or months in advance ensures that you won’t forget to post, and it forces you to think strategically about the content you include. Many organizations choose to use a content calendar that includes social media posts, blogs, emails, newsletters and any other content distributed on a regular basis. Planning content in advance makes it easy to incorporate special events, holidays and campaigns into your calendar. Calendars make scheduling social media much more efficient.

  1. Connect with Your Network

The success of your social media account relies heavily on followers and engagement. Follow influencers in your industry. See what users are saying about the industry and your brand. Monitor these posts and respond to user concerns when appropriate. Share posts that reflect positively on your brand.

  1. Focus on the Quality of the Content

At the end of the day, your social media accounts should be used to provide high quality content to your users. Create content that users can connect with emotionally. Focus on providing content that helps users make informed buying decisions, not content that only pushes the sale. Use a diverse content mix that includes photos, videos, graphics, text and links.

Social media strategies are constantly evolving. Take time to reassess your social media strategy and make improvements as often as possible.

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