No one likes the guy at a cocktail party who talks endlessly about himself without letting anyone else get a word in edgewise. Not only is he annoying and rude, he’s usually not all that interesting to boot!
Unfortunately, many businesses are guilty of the same lack of etiquette when it comes to social media. Perpetual self-promotion without any attempt of trying to encourage social media engagement or conversation is one of the most common and detrimental mistakes that can be made when trying to build a community.
Of course, the objective of any business that leverages social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter is to expand brand exposure with the ultimate goal of increasing sales. However, social media isn’t advertising. Rather, it’s relationship building. With an engaged, loyal online group of followers, you’ll cultivate an audience that will want to buy from you. And, here’s an even bigger benefit—they’ll share information about your brand with their communities, too.
So, let’s get down to the business of how to be the organization that people actually want to engage with at the “online cocktail party” known as social media. Here are 10 great ways to start and sustain the conversation.
Online audiences are perpetually searching for something that piques their curiosity. If you can give them something that propels them to find out more and combine it with a question, you can generate initial interest and start building valuable engagement.
Example: Would you like to know how John increased his online network from 40 to 4,000?
The questions you ask can be generic and broad-based or focused on your industry or even on the products and services you provide.
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