Take a look at the social media marketing of any number of small businesses and you will likely see the same mistakes repeated over and over again. For a great number of these businesses, their social media strategy consists of creating a Facebook site and then just posting short promotional updates as their status:
Find out why we're the best EPOS system in the West!
Serve more customers with our fast and efficient system!
We can't wait to help you improve your business!
And then strangely, these companies just don't succeed! Why wouldn't people be excited to sign up?
The Way You View Your Social Media
The underlying problem here is actually the way that businesses are viewing their social media campaigns. To them, this is a marketing campaign and all they need to do to succeed is to just post regularly and shout about their business.
But ask yourself: would you follow a social media account that did that?
So how should you be viewing your social media accounts?
As products! View your social accounts as products that provide value, just like your core business, and that can exist outside of your business.
A Great Example
Let's take a look at a company that is doing very well on social media. Etsy is a store that lets creators sell their own home-made products and they have a very strong following on Pinterest. This is thanks to boards like their Cool Spaces board, which users can follow to see ideas for interior design and home decor. Here, they'll see regular pictures of inspiring homes, giving them ideas for their own plans.
Note the key difference: the board itself has a USP and there is a reason for people to follow it. Promotion is not the sole reason for this board to exist and instead occurs as a secondary objective.
So instead of thinking of your social media as a means to an end, ask instead what you can offer to your audience using this medium. This is also how you might succeed on a social media site that doesn't seem obviously relevant to your business model.
How does a life insurance company succeed on Pinterest? Perhaps by showing pictures of families and inspiring images suggesting days out and ways for those families to bond. Now people have a reason to follow and they might not even realize that the board is promoting your business until you recommend your life insurance product that is!