A golden rule of social media is that, for it to be truly effective, you need to talk to people. Broadcasting messages may get you some visibility, but it’s unlikely to tell you anything or deliver any real results.
However, for people using official social media channels, it’s often difficult to get beyond that broadcast stage because of time (not enough), money (shortage of) or confidence (lack of).
It seems to me though, that the people who cannot move beyond broadcast, and would stand to benefit most, are often the ones who are most upset when they read things they don’t like about their project or
And the repurcussions of not committing to proper digital engagement can be dangerous.
Just take a look at Southern trains. No official Twitter presence, so a disgruntled passenger has set up their own account for Southern, which re-broadcasts almost every negative comment or complaint made by other passengers on Twitter.
Can you really afford not to move beyond broadcast?
If you are lacking in time/money/confidence to engage fully through your official social media channels, think about the following:
1. Do you need so many social media channels in the first place? If you can’t manage them properly, maybe you’re better off not having them at all. Leaving is difficult though, so you may find this is just as time consuming.
2. Focus on the channels that have the potential to deliver the most engagement and set some time aside for these, even if it is only ten minutes a day.
3. Build up a bank of content that you can use to help answer questions about your product or service online, with a set of links so that readers can learn more. This makes your engagement activity something that can be shared between several colleagues.
4. If confidence is an issue, identify your cheerleaders first, and talk to them. This will help you get comfortable with conversations online, and make them feel loved.